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Indian Navy would like to acquire MH-60R Seahawk helicopters to counter submarine threats

According to news published on December 4, 2019, to the Hindu newspaper website, Vice Admiral Atul Kumar Jain has announced that the Indian Navy needs a new naval helicopter able to track and destroy submarines.

Indian Navy would like to acquire MH 60R Seahawk helicopters to counter submarine threats 925 001 Sailors remove chocks and chains from an MH-60R Sea Hawk, assigned to the "Raptors" of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 71, on the flight deck of the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Russell (DDG 59), Nov. 30, 2019. (Picture source U.S. Navy)

Indian navy would like to acquire 24 MH-60R Seahawk helicopters from the US-based Lockheed Martin's Sikorsky Company. Sources in the Indian Defense Ministry said that the new acquisition would come as a replacement for the aging Sea King helicopters.

Currently, the Indian Navy uses Chetak Helicopters. The range of Chetak’s is limited to a radius of about 10 km, whether from shore or from any floating platform.

The Seahawks can operate for long ranges both from shores and ships and can land on the flight on any Indian naval ship, be it corvettes or guided-missile destroyers. Its avionics, communication and radars are advanced and state-of-the-art and have proven to be one of the best in anti-submarine warfare. It is capable of firing air-launched torpedoes and Hellfire missiles.

As the Navy's next-generation submarine hunter and anti-surface warfare helicopter, the MH-60R Sea Hawk is the cornerstone of the Navy's Helicopter Concept of Operations. Anti-Submarine Warfare and Surface Warfare are the MH-60R's primary missions. Secondary missions include Electromagnetic Warfare, Search and Rescue, Vertical Replenishment, Naval Surface Fire Support, logistics support, personnel transport, Medical Evacuation, and VHF/UHF/Link Communication Relay. The MH-60R and its mission systems have replaced the fleet's legacy SH-60B and SH-60F aircraft.

The MH-60R Sea Hawk missions are Anti-Submarine Warfare, Anti-Surface Warfare, Electromagnetic Warfare, Surveillance, Communications Relay, Search and Rescue, Naval Gunfire Support and logistics support.