The UH-60M is a modified version of the Black Hawk, a four-bladed, twin-engine, medium-lift utility chopper aimed at serving in the harshest conditions worldwide.
The Taiwan’s copters will be “uniquely configured,” the contract states without revealing further details. Earlier, US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) released notification unveiling that the copters will have GAU-19/A 12.7 mm Gatling guns, radar warning receivers, infrared countermeasure sets, laser detecting sets and communication/datalink systems.
Taiwan ordered a total of 60 Black Hawks valued some $3.1 billion in 2010, and the new contract is a part of the wider deal. The first four platforms were delivered to the country in December 2014, and shipping in batches of seven are continuing.
“All 60 of the basic aircraft are under contract,” Defense News quoted a Sikorsky source as saying. “This most recent contract is for completion work, adding options and the stuff different from the USA.”
At the time of the award, the US Army said it will cover the full value of this deal from its fiscal 2016 “other” funds. All the works are expected to be carried in Stratford, Connecticut, where Sikorsky is based.
The second contract, worth of $158.43 million, calls for Sikorsky to construct 14 UH-60Ms for the US Army. The deal is a modification of the previous order, according to Journal Inquirer.
The announcement comes as the aircraft corporation struggles to downsize it expenses. On Wednesday, 109 workers were laid off, and Sikorsky is planning to fire an additional 85 employees to “remain competitive” on the market.