American firm Lockheed Martin on Friday shared the first picture of the MH-60 Romeo multi-role helicopter for the Indian Navy in Indian colours. India has placed orders for 24 of these helicopters under a government to government deal. The helicopters will be acquired at a cost of $2 billion. India has been in need of these formidable anti-submarine hunter helicopters for more than a decade now.
MH-60 Romeo multi-role helicopter for India | All you need to know
- The MH-60 Romeo deal is expected to have an offset requirement. Sources indicated that India plans to follow up this urgent requirement with a long-term plan to manufacture 123 of these helicopters in India.
- Currently deployed with the US Navy as the primary anti-submarine warfare anti-surface weapon system for open ocean and littoral zones, Lockheed Martin's MH-60R Seahawk helicopter is considered the world's most advanced maritime helicopter.
- According to industry experts, it is the most capable naval helicopter available today designed to operate from frigates, destroyers, cruisers and aircraft carriers.
- MH-60 Romeo Seahawks would add lethal capabilities of the Indian Navy, which experts say is the need of the hour given the aggressive behavior of China in the Indian Ocean region.
- Lockheed over the years has emerged as a major American supplier of state-of-the-art defence military equipment.
- With this Seahawk deal the overall US-India defense trade will surpass USD 20 billion.
- According to US Naval Air System Command, the MH-60R Seahawk missions are anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, surveillance, communications relay, combat search and rescue, naval gunfire support and logistics support.
- As the Navy's next generation submarine hunter and anti-surface warfare helicopter, the MH-60R Seahawk is considered to be the cornerstone of the Navy's Helicopter Concept of Operations.
- The MH-60R and its mission systems have replaced the US naval fleet's legacy SH-60B and SH-60F aircraft.