Lockheed Martin has delivered the 24th and final MH-60R Seahawk helicopter to the Royal Australian Navy (RAN).

The helicopter was produced at the company’s new 8,300m² logistics and maintenance facility in Nowra on the New South Wales south coast, which will house and maintain the new fleet of 24 MH-60R Seahawk helicopters.

This facility has a maintenance repair and overhaul base and a logistics centre warehouse that will provide services for the RAN’s new fleet.

"We at Lockheed Martin are committed to securing and investing in the future of Australia."

Lockheed Martin Australia and New Zealand chief executive Raydon Gates said: “We at Lockheed Martin are committed to securing and investing in the future of Australia.

“This facility in Nowra will house and maintain the new fleet, contributing to the local community and creating local job opportunities.”

In June 2011, the MH-60R ‘Romeo’ Seahawk helicopter was selected by the Commonwealth of Australia to fulfil the Australian Defence Force’s requirement of a fleet of 24 multi-role naval combat aircraft.

All 24 MH-60Rs have now been delivered to the Royal Australian Navy.

The MH-60R helicopter can perform secondary missions, including search-and-rescue operations, vertical replenishment, and has the capability to offer naval surface fire support, logistics support, personnel transport, medical evacuation, and VHF / UHF / link communication relay.

These aircraft will replace the RAN’s existing fleet of S-70B-2 SEAHAWK helicopters.             

The RAN fleet is supported by Lockheed Martin and Sikorsky through the Maritime Helicopter Support Company (MHSCo).

Image: A Royal Australian Navy MH-60R helicopter takes off from the helipad of aircraft manufacturer Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin Company, earlier this year. Photo: courtesy of Lockheed Martin Corporation.