HH–60 Pave Hawk

Product Type:

Combat Search and Rescue Helicopter

Using Service (US):

Air Force (USAF)

Program Status:


Prime Contractor:

Sikorsky Aircraft (United Technologies)

The HH-60 Pave Hawk

About the HH–60 Pave Hawk:

The Sikorsky HH-60 Pave Hawk is the U.S. Air Force combat search and rescue (CSAR) version of the Army's UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter. The HH-60M is a four bladed, twin engine, single-rotor helicopter that is designed to carry a crew of four and a combat-equipped squad of 11 or an equal cargo load. The aircraft is also capable of carrying external loads of up to 6,000 pounds. The HH-60M is powered by two General Electric T700-GE-701D turboshaft engines, each delivering 1,994 shp. The older HH-60G is powered by the less powerful 1,890 shp T700-GE-701C.

The HH-60M comes in many variants and many different modifications. The aircraft can be fitted with stub wings to carry additional fuel tanks or weapons. Variants may have different capabilities and equipment in order to fulfill different roles. The Pave Hawk can perform a wide array of missions, including the tactical transport of troops, electronic warfare, and aeromedical evacuation. The HH-60M will replace the HH-60G.

The Pave Hawk has conducted countless operations in support of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. HH-60 crews have logged hundreds of American and coalition saves conducting combat search and rescue missions and medical evacuations or MEDEVAC missions.

The Navy has purchased 24 HH-60M Pave Hawks in an effort to recapitalize the CSAR HH-60 fleet. As of April 2014, there are 98 of the original 112 HH-60G Pave Hawks remaining, which means that the current U.S. Air Force Pave Hawk inventory is 122 aircraft, of which 98 are HH-60Gs and 24 are HH-60Ms.


The Pave Hawk can be equipped with two M240 7.62mm machine guns or two GAU-21 .50 caliber machine guns. For more detail, see specifications below.

Price/Unit Cost:

The unit cost of the HH-60M, excluding ancillary equipment and support costs is $33.16 million (in FY 2012). The Air Force purchases UH-60M airframes at a unit cost of $17.45 million and spends another $15.71 million on additional mission equipment. UH-60M airframes are supplied by Sikorsky and converted to the HH-60M configuration at the U.S. Army's Redstone Arsenal in Alabama.


The HH-60 Pave Hawk is the U.S. Air Force version of the UH-60 Black Hawk modified for aircrew search and rescue in all weather situations. The Pave Hawk performs special missions including search and rescue, combat support, and airborne medical evacuation.

FY 2014 DoD Program:

Provides RDT&E funds in the amount of $333.6M to support the development of a long-term Combat Search and Rescue (CSAR) replacement platform. FY 14 also provides $28.8 million for HH-60G modifications and spares.

FY 2015 DoD Program:

No RDT&E funds provided in FY 2015 to support the development of a long-term Combat Search and Rescue (CSAR) replacement platform. FY 14 provides $61.0 million for HH-60G modifications and spares.

For more information, click to see the FY 2015 DoD HH-60 Modifications Budget.

Source: U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), Sikorsky, and General Electric Co.

Specifications Armament DoD Spending FY2015 Budget

Last Update: June 16, 2014.

By Joakim Kasper Oestergaard /// (jkasper@bga-aeroweb.com)

External Resources:

Sikorsky's HH-60 Site: HH-60 Pave Hawk

YouTube: HH-60 Pave Hawk | YouTube

Fact Sheet: Not Available

HH-60 U.S. Defense Budget Charts:

DoD Spending on the HH–60 Pave Hawk in FY 2011, FY 2012, FY 2013, FY 2014 and FY 2015
DoD Purchases of HH–60M Pave Hawk Helicopters in FY 2011, FY 2012, FY 2013, FY 2014 and FY 2015
Defense Budget Data

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DoD Spending, Procurement and RDT&E: FY 2011/12/13 + Budget for FYs 2014 + 2015

DoD Defense Spending, Procurement, Modifications, Spares, and RDT&E for the HH–60 Pave Hawk

Download Official U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) Budget Data:

HH-60M Purchases RECAP (USAF-2014) Modification of HH-60 Helicopters (USAF) Aircraft Spares and Parts

Aircraft Specifications: HH–60M Pave Hawk

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Primary Function: Combat Search and Rescue (CSAR)
Prime Contractor: Sikorsky Aircraft (United Technologies Corp.)
Power Plant: 2x General Electric T700-GE-701D engines with 1,994 shp (each engine)
Length: 64 ft 8 in (17.1 m)
Height: 16 ft 8 in (4.4 m)
Rotor Diameter: 53 ft 7 in (14.1 m)
Weight (Empty): 16,000 lbs (7,258 kg)
Maximum Takeoff Weight (MTOW): 24,500 lbs (11,113 kg)
Capacity: 8–12 troops; 6,000 lbs external cargo
Fuel Capacity: 4,500 lbs (2,041 kg)
Speed: 159 kts/184 mph (295 km/h)
Service Ceiling: 14,000 ft (4,267 m)
Range: 504 nm/580 miles (934 km)
Combat Radius: 210 nm/242 miles (389 km)
Armament/Weapons: 2x M240 7.62mm machine guns or 2x GAU-21 .50 caliber machine guns
Crew: Four (two pilots, one flight engineer and one gunner)
Price/Unit Cost: $33.16 million (in FY 2012)
Deployed: Date unknown
Inventory: 122 (98x HH-60G and 24x HH-60M)

Defense Program

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