Sikorsky S-70

The H-60 Hawk Family

Designed to replace the venerable Bell Huey series , the YUH-60 was the winner of the 1972's US Army UTTAS program ( Utility Tactical Transport Aircraft System ) against the Boeing Vertol YUH-61 for a new helicopter that contemplate the Vietnam era lessons.

The UTTAS competition was born October 1965, when a Qualitative Material Development Objective was approved by the US Department of Defence (DoD). The specification called for an aircraft able to carry a crew of three and eleven troops, a 3.150 kg slung load, at a cruising speed of 270/320 km/h. Requests for proposals were issued to the US industry on January 5, 1972. Bell, Boeing Vertol and Sikorsky submitted five proposals and the last two were selected to proceed to prototype construction with contracts being placed on 30 August, 1972. The Sikorsky S-70 was declared winner on December 26, 1976.

YUH-64 Black Hawk prototype

Configured in more than 10 different versions for the US armed forces, had became more popular since 1978 when the first unit was delivered to the US Army. By 1994, 2000 Hawks were already built.

The latest UH-60M variant represents the US army's third standard baseline Black Hawk version in the history of the program. Sikorsky delivered the UH-60A from 1978 until 1989 and has been delivering the UH-60L since 1989. As of 2006, is nearing the end of production of that variant for the US army as it transitions to the UH-60M.

Black Hawk in ESSS configuration

As an example of this helicopter effectiveness, on December 2000 a dramatic rescue took place 200 miles (322 kilometres) off the coast of Virginia, USA. The cruise liner SeaBreaze I suffered an engine failure during a storm and soon began taking on water. One US Coast Guard HH-60J Jayhawk helicopter rescued 26 crewmembers and another Jayhawk rescued the remaining eight. The helicopter with the 26 rescued sailors aboard, combined with its own four crewmen, set a new record for the most people aboard a single H-60.

US Navy Seahawks

The Seahawks for the US Navy come in three versions, SH-60B, SH-60F,and HH-60H.
The SH-60B was the first of the bunch and can be distinquished by its surface search radar underneath the cockpit, between the wheels. Also all SH60B's have a sonobouy launcher on the left side that looks like a five by five set of tubes. SH60Bs are used off cruisers and destroyers for antisubmarine warfare and surface search and surveillance.
The SH-60F is the next in line and is the carrier based version of the Seahawk. It has a dipping sonar (unique in the Seahawk family), it is used to find submarines. It is also the "slickest" of the group having very little things sticking out of it. It has no surface search radar or side mounted sonobouy launcher. It is most often confused with the B model, not the H.
The HH-60H is the final version. It has the two sliding windows on the left side. It also has the speacial HRSS nozzels on the exhaust to reduce heat signature. Some times, the HH-60H can be seen with a nose mounted FLIR ball and HELLFIRE missiles. It is used for Cargo, Combat Search and Rescue, and other missions.
All these were replace by the MH-60R and MH-60S (previously known as SH-60R and CH-60S Knighthawk )

US Air Force Pave Hawks

The Air Force variants were the first Hawks to introduce an air-refueling capability. There is (was) virtually no difference between the MH-60G Pave Hawk and the HH-60G Pave Hawk with a few minor exceptions. The biggest difference (and determining factor in the designation) is the command that they were assigned to. The 10 MH-60G's were assigned to AF Special Operations Command (AFSOC) and hence the "MH" designation for "multi mission". The MH-60G's also had a different paint scheme -- a dark gray similar to the other AFSOC aircraft like the MH-53J/L Pave Low and the MC-130's. The remaining HH-60G's were assigned to rescue duties with Air Combat Command (ACC) and painted woodland camouflage. The other minor differences are that the MH-60G's had "Sea Hawk" windows long before the HH-60G's, the (former) MH-60G's all have rotor brakes, and they have windshield washer reservoirs and motors. When the USAF had both designations in service, there was only one Operator's Manual ("Dash 1") and it was for the "MH/HH-60G Pave Hawk". With the closing of the only AFSOC MH-60G unit in the late 90's, the MH-60G's were transferred to ACC, painted woodland camo, and redesignated HH-60Gs. The USAF currently has no MH-60G Pave Hawks in service -- they are all now HH-60G Pave Hawks... though that may change with the move of ALL HH-60G's to AFSOC on October 2003.


1972 : US Army UTTAS program begun
1974, Oct 17: YUH-60 First flight
1976, Dec 26: Declared winner against YUH-61 after 7 months of competitive tests
1977, Sep: S-70B wins US Navy LAMPS III competition
1978, Oct: First flight of production aircraft UH-60A
1979, Dec 12: SH-60B First flight
1981: EH-60 QuickFix program begun
1984, Feb 4: HH-60 Nighthawk First flight
1986, Sep: HH-60J USCG Jayhawk First flight
1989, Oct: UH-60L, engines upgrade and ESSS capable
1994, May 5: Hawk (S-70 family) number 2000 take off
2005 : First US Navy MH-60R delivered
2006 : US Army third generation UH-60M

MC-130P Combat Shadow refueling 2 MH-60G Pavehawks



Crew: 3 + 11
Engines: 2 x GE T700-GE-700 of 1500 shp each
Speed: 265 km/h Max: 296
Service Ceiling: 5790 m
Range: 600 km
Weight: Empty: 4944 kg -- Max: 9185
Rotor Span: 16.36 m
Length: 19.76 m
Height: 5.13 m
Disc Area: 210 m2

Black Hawk views blue prints

S-70 US military variants

Model User
YUH-60A UTTAS Prototype
UH-60A Black Hawk US Army initial serie
UH-60A Pot Hawk Model for US Custom for anti-drug surveillance
UH-60A Credible Hawk SAR Model for US Air Force
GUH-60A Simulator without flight capacity
JUH-60A Model constructed for evaluations and tests
YEH-60A US Army prototype for electronic warfare (ECM)
EH-60A Quick Fix ECM variant
HH-60A Prototype for USAF ( single aircraft 82-23718 )
MH-60A First special operations Blackhawk, was a standard UH-60 with many improvements
VH-60A first UH-60 VIP variant
UH-60B Improved engines and avionics; not built but incorporated into the UH-60L
YEH-60B UH-60A for targets acquisition, prototype
SH-60B Seahawk LAMPS mk3 Model for US Navy (sea above)
EH-60C ECM version for US Army (66 built)
HH-60D Night Hawk Combat SAR model for US Air Force (cancelled)
CH-60E Proposed assault helicopter for US Marines (cancelled)
SH-60F Ocean Hawk Model for US Navy (sea above)
MH-60G Pave Hawk USAF; combat SAR and special operations, equipped with a drogue and a FLIR turret
HH-60G Pave Hawk USAF; similar to MH-60G optimised for SAR (see above)
HH-60H Rescue Hawk Model for US Navy (sea above)
HH-60J Jay Hawk US Coast Guard for SAR functions
UH-60J Japanese-built model similar to UH-60L with SAR functions
MH-60K US Army Spec.Ops; similar to MH-60G, but with a better equipment
AH-60L Gunship for US Army 160 SOAR Rgt
UH-60L Improved model of UH-60A, see UH-60B
HH-60L US Army medevac based on UH-60L
UH-60M New production model for the US Army
HH-60M US Army medevac based on UH-60M
MH-60M US Army MH-60K replacements
VH-60N White Hawk US President Marine One; equipped with improved avionics and communication system
UH-60P Model for Southern Korea
UH-60Q US Army Dust-off Hawk Medical model
MH-60R Seahawk Model for US Navy (sea above)
MH-60S Seahawk Model for US Navy (sea above)
CH-60S Knight Hawk renamed MH-60S
MH-60T Jay Hawk Upgraded USCG HH-60J Jayhawks
HH-60U Ghost Hawk USAF failed HH-1N Replacement
UH-60V UH-60L cockpit upgraded as the UH-60M
HH-60W USAF Combat Search and Rescue (CSAR) CRH-60

Other variants

Firehawk S-70A equipped for firefighting, rescue and medical evacuation
Maple Hawk Proposal for Canadian Armed Forces, not accepted

Database: ( production list )

Austrian Air Force
Australia Royal Australian Army - Royal Australian Navy
Brazil Air Force - Army - Navy
Colombia Air Force - Army - Police
Spanish Navy
Hellenic Navy
Heil Ha'Avir
Japan Mitsubishi S-70 - JGSDF - JASDF - JMSDF
Taiwan Thunderhawk - Bluehawk
USA Army - Navy - Air Force - Marines - Coast Guard - CBP

Related News:
S-70 Battlehawk for Australia Feb 16, 1999
Laser-based countermeasures for the H-60 Aug 24, 1999
US Navy CH-60S is on the production line Oct 25, 1999
Cockpit air bag system for the H-60 Nov 18, 1999
Rockwell Collins upgrade Turkish Blackhawks Jan 24, 2000
First CH-60S completes initial flight Jan 27, 2000
First CH-60S arrives at NAS Patuxent River May 25, 2000
More Seahawks for Greece Navy Jun 14, 2000
Black Hawks to Colombia in 2002 Sep 21, 2000
Austria to purchase 9 Blackhawks Oct 09, 2000
6 more SH-60 Seahawks for Spain Oct 26, 2000
New paint for US Navy gray CH-60S Nov 17, 2000
30 more Black Hawks for Colombia Dec 18, 2000
New record for Coast Guard Jayhawk Rescue Jan 17, 2001
First Flight of Turkish SH-60 Seahawk Jan 18, 2001
Others 24 new Blackhawks for Israel Feb 01, 2001
US Navy trials TERPROM on SH-60 Seahawk Feb 05, 2001
MH-60S in its first at-sea rescue by hoist Oct 02, 2002
First Production Sikorsky MH-60R Delivered Aug 19, 2005
First New Production UH-60M Black Hawk delivered to US Army Jul 31, 2006
Sikorsky Aircraft Signs Strategic MOU with PZL Mielec Sep 20, 2006

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