Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., a subsidiary of Lockheed Martin, has clinched a $168.2m contract for the advanced acquisition of long-lead time materials crucial for producing 21 CH-53K King Stallion helicopters.
The contract, supporting the Marine Corps, shows Lockheed Martin’s commitment to enhancing the capabilities of the heavy-lift helicopter fleet, paving the way for advanced military operations.
The company’s commitment to advancing CH-53K helicopter capabilities is evident in the $2.7bn contract to supply 35 helicopters to the USMC and the Israeli Air Force, marking the largest procurement for this multi-mission aircraft.
Sikorsky has made strides in distributing the CH-53K King Stallion helicopter, delivering the seventh aircraft to the US Marine Corps (USMC) in 2022. Concurrently, it delivered two additional helicopters to the USMC in December 2022.
Sikorsky Aircraft Corp is headquartered in Stratford, Connecticut. The contract, awarded by the Naval Air Systems Command in Patuxent River, Maryland, is set to propel the full-rate production of the helicopters in lot 9.
The CH-53K King Stallion helicopter, a joint venture between the US Department of Defense (DoD) and the Israeli government, is set to receive a boost with the procurement of 169 units of the General Electric T408 turboshaft engine in a $683.7m contract.
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The CH-53K King Stallion helicopter was hailed as a heavy-lift capability and played a role in the Marine Corps’ operational readiness. The contract’s non-competitive procurement status underlines the unique position of Sikorsky as a manufacturer in the field. The project will be carried out in Stratford, Connecticut, with an anticipated completion date in March 2025.
The CH-53K has reduced operating costs and is said to have a more predictable maintenance cycle. It will support the Marine Air-Ground Task Force, providing unparalleled lift capabilities in terms of operational altitudes and weight lift capacities. The CH-53K variant can lift three times that of its predecessor, the CH-53E, according to GlobalData’s “US Defence Market 2022-2027” report.
Concurrently, the US Marine Corps (USMC) deployed the CH-53K in its first fleet training exercise at Mountain Home Air Force Base in Idaho in 2022.