MH-60 Black Hawk
The primary mission of the MH-60 Black Hawk helicopter is to conduct overt or covert infiltration, exfiltration, and resupply of special operations forces across a wide range of environmental conditions. An armed version, the Direct Action Penetrator, has the primary mission of armed escort and fire support. Secondary missions of the MH-60 include external load, combat search and rescue and medical evacuation operations. The MH-60 is capable of operating from fixed-base facilities, remote sites, or ocean-going vessels.
The 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne) operates three versions of the Black Hawk helicopter:
The MH-60K (Black Hawk) is a highly modified twin-engine utility helicopter based on the basic UH-60 Black Hawk airframe but developed specifically for the special operations mission. Improvements include an aerial refueling capability, an advanced suite of aircraft survivability equipment and improved navigation systems, including multi-mode radar to further improve pinpoint navigation in all environments and under the harshest conditions.
The MH-60L is also a highly modified version of the standard U.S. Army Black Hawk configured for special operations use. It has many, but not all, of the modifications found on the “K” model.
The MH-60L Direct Action Penetrator (DAP), or DAP, is an MH-60L modified to mount a variety of offensive weapons systems. Its mission is to conduct attack helicopter operations utilizing area fire or precision guided munitions and armed infiltration or exfiltration of small units. It is capable of conducting direct action missions as an attack helicopter or reconfiguring for troop assault operations. In the direct action role, the DAP would not normally be used as a primary transport for troops or supplies because of high gross-weight limits. The DAP is capable of conducting any mission during day, night or adverse weather conditions.
MH-60L and MH-60K Performance Characteristics:
- Normal cruise airspeed 120 knots
- Maximum dash airspeed 178 knots
- Normal mission range (no A/R) 450 NM
- Normal mission endurance (no A/R) 4 hrs, 20 min