OWEGO, NY (WIVT/WBGH) – Lockheed Martin is sharing more details about its big, new contract with the Royal Australian Navy.

The $503 million contract includes the production of 12 MH 60R Sea Hawk helicopters.
Director of the Naval Helicopters program, Scott Breen says that the Australian Navy was the company’s first international customer back in 2011.

He says there are currently 1,100 employees working specifically on this project.

Breen says that the MH 60 Romeo is a derivative of the Black Hawk; and says that these helicopters have more sensory capabilities than any other in the world.

Director of the Naval Helicopter Programs at Lockheed Martin, Scott Breen says, “We are working with the U.S. Navy to enhance, so that the aircraft is more and more reliable, a key measurement for the Navy and all Navy’s that they need an aircraft, in a harsh maritime environment, you need an aircraft that will be reliable, it will be there when you need it, and mission capable. So we’re constantly looking to refresh and make improvements to an already great aircraft.”

The frame of the helicopters are built by Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin company based out of Stratford, Connecticut where they are then flown to Owego for the installation of the avionics.

Breen says this contract guarantees that Lockheed employees have a production project for the next several years.

The dozen MH 60R helicopters are expected to be shipped to the Australian Navy between 2025 and 2026.