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The Spanish Navy has formally ordered the eight MH-60R Seahawk helicopters it requested from the US authorities final 12 months.

The procurement comes 19 months after the US State Division accepted the request and notified Congress of the proposed $950-million overseas navy sale.

In keeping with producer Lockheed Martin, the choppers to be delivered to Madrid may have superior mission methods and sensors appropriate for anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare.

The Seahawks will reportedly considerably improve Spain’s maritime patrol capabilities amid the growing threats within the European area.

The nation has employed SH-60 helicopters to protect its maritime territories after decommissioning its decades-old SH-3 Sea King helicopters in 2022.

“The brand new MH-60R will improve … the SH-60B fleet, elevating the [Spanish Navy] to the best stage of anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare functionality,” the service mentioned. “We anticipate a easy transition from the SH-60B to the MH-60R.”

‘Prepared, Succesful, and Outfitted’

In March 2022, the US authorities mentioned Spain had requested 20 T-700-GE-401C engines, 32 AGM-114R Hellfire missiles, and 100 WGU-59/B Superior Precision Kill Weapon Techniques along with the eight MH-60R choppers.

It additionally needed airborne low-frequency sonars, missile warning methods, embedded international positioning methods, and identification friend-or-foe transponders.

Though it’s unclear if the objects have been included within the recently-signed contract, the US State Division mentioned the choppers alone will permit Spain to raised reply to threats.

They will additionally help different missions, together with vertical replenishment, search and rescue, and communications relay.

“Spain’s confidence within the MH-60R is an attestation to our shared dedication to nationwide safety and the safety of our allied nations,” US Navy H-60 program supervisor Capt. William Hargreaves defined.

He additional said that the brand new applied sciences built-in into the Madrid-bound MH-60R will permit the Spanish Navy “to stay a prepared, succesful, and geared up fleet.”