Navy’s Presidential Helicopter Program Approved for Production of Six Aircraft

News Release, NAVAIR

Patuxent River, Md.–The Navy’s Presidential helicopter program awarded a $542 million contract to Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin Company, June 10, 2019 to build six VH-92A aircraft, spares and support equipment.

“The team has efficiently leveraged a proven platform with cutting edge government mission systems for rapid agile development of the next helicopters to fly Presidential missions,” said the Honorable James F. Geurts, assistant secretary of the Navy for research, development and acquisition. “Optimizing commercial practices, the VH-92A will provide safe, reliable and timely transportation with mission-critical communications that will support the security of our Nation. I am proud of the combined government and contractor team who has worked so hard to transition this program into initial production and did so at over $1 billion less than the program’s cost baseline.”

“The Presidential lift mission is a no-fail mission for the Marine Corps,” said Lt. Gen Steven Rudder, the deputy commandant for Marine Corps aviation. “We deliver helicopter and MV-22 transportation across the globe to support the requirements of the Presidency.  The authorization to move forward with procurement of the VH-92A will allow the Marine Corps to deliver the next generation of Presidential Helicopter support.”

The VH-92A aircraft will increase performance and payload over the current Presidential helicopters, VH-3D and VH-60N, that have been serving over 40 years. The VH-92A will provide enhanced crew coordination systems and communications capabilities, plus improve availability and maintainability.

“The authorization to exercise the program’s first Low-Rate Initial Production lot is a testament to the hard work and dedication from the team to deliver this important asset on budget and within the planned acquisition timeline” said Col. Eric Ropella, PMA-274 presidential helicopter program manager. “This award is an example of acquisition done right.”

Government testing will continue to validate system performance and prepare for Initial Operational Test and Evaluation (IOT&E) planned for mid 2020 and Initial Operational Capability (IOC) in late 2020. 

The Navy and Marine Corps are committed to ensuring mission-critical Presidential helicopter transportation is delivered as an integral and world-wide support requirement of the Presidency – necessary to conduct Presidential duties as Commander in Chief, Chief Executive and Head of State.

The Southern Maryland Chronicle is a local, small business entrusted to provide factual, unbiased reporting to the Southern Maryland Community. While we look to local businesses for advertising, we hope to keep that cost as low as possible in order to attract even the smallest of local businesses and help them get out to the public. We must also be able to pay employees(part-time and full-time), along with equipment, and website related things. We never want to make the Chronicle a “pay-wall” style news site.

To that end, we are looking to the community to offer donations. Whether it’s a one-time donation or you set up a reoccurring monthly donation. It is all appreciated. All donations at this time will be going to furthering the Chronicle through hiring individuals that have the same goals of providing fair, and unbiased news to the community. For now, donations will be going to a business PayPal account I have set-up for the Southern Maryland Chronicle, KDC Designs. All business transactions currently occur within this PayPal account. If you have any questions regarding this you can email me at davidhiggins@southernmarylandchronicle.com

Thank you for all of your support and I hope to continue bringing Southern Maryland the best news possible for a very long time. — David M. Higgins II