State Department orders additional S-61 helicopters

  • 29-Sep-2010 11:59 EDT
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For more than 50 years, the Sikorsky S-61 has reliably and safely performed missions for U.S. and foreign allied militaries. A British Sikorsky S-61 is shown.

The U.S. State Department has ordered 11 additional upgraded S-61 utility helicopters for use in Iraq and Afghanistan from Sikorsky Aerospace Services. Earlier this year, the State Department entered into a five-year indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity (IDIQ) contract for up to 110 upgraded S-61 aircraft for passenger and cargo transport missions in support of its worldwide operations. Under the IDIQ agreement, the first four aircraft purchased in February are currently in completion and are scheduled for deployment in Afghanistan this fall. The upgraded S-61 helicopter incorporates key components including composite main rotor blades, a glass cockpit, and modular wiring harness. Additional features have been incorporated to reduce pilot fatigue and maintenance requirements for increased safety. The first delivery of the 11 upgraded S-61 helicopters for Iraq and Afghanistan is scheduled to occur in mid-2011.

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