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The Coast Guard accepted the first newly manufactured MH-60T hull in support of the service life extension program (SLEP) for its Jayhawk fleet on Nov. 30, 2023, at the Sikorsky plant in Troy, Alabama. The hull was delivered on Dec. 9 to the Coast Guard Aviation Logistics Center in Elizabeth City, North Carolina, where the SLEP work will be completed. This followed formal approval in October to move to full rate production in the SLEP and begin Obtain Phase activities for MH-60T fleet growth.

The Coast Guard issued a delivery order with a total value of $25.1 million on Sept. 11, 2023, for three additional new hulls for its MH-60T helicopter fleet under an existing indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity contract. This action brought the total number of new hulls on order to 45. The September delivery order supports MH-60T fleet growth while the remaining 42 hulls on contract support the service life extension program for the existing fleet.

On March 8, 2023, the Coast Guard celebrated the start of production of new MH-60T hulls at Sikorsky Aircraft Corp. The new hulls will be outfitted with new wiring harnesses and other dynamic components to extend the service life of the medium range recovery helicopter fleet into the 2040s.

MH-60T Sustainment Program

The MH-60T is an all-weather medium range recovery (MRR) helicopter that provides multi-mission capabilities in support of Department of Homeland Security and Coast Guard missions. The MRR helicopter supports all statutorily mandated Coast Guard missions with specific emphasis on operations requiring rapid response and extended on-scene rotary wing aviation presence. It also conducts indirect support activities such as training and transportation of cargo and personnel. The Coast Guard is currently completing a Service Life Extension Project (SLEP) to sustain MH-60T Jayhawk fleet operations through the 2030s.

Why this program?

The Coast Guard’s H-60 helicopters have been in service since 1990, and the oldest helicopters in the MH-60T fleet are approaching their 20,000-hour service life limit. An estimated 90 percent of the fleet will reach this limit by fiscal year 2028 without the completion of a SLEP.

The current sustainment program was developed to prevent this capability from being significantly degraded in the future while serving as a bridging strategy until the service is able to obtain a suitable replacement through the Department of Defense’s Future Vertical Life Program.

How will the Coast Guard sustain the fleet?

The Coast Guard examined several options for extending the service life of its current MH-60T fleet, and is moving forward with a solution to replace the hulls of the legacy airframes. These replacement hulls will come from two sources: retired USN H-60 aircraft and newly manufactured hulls procured from the original equipment manufacturer, Lockheed Martin/Sikorsky.

Navy hull conversion at the Coast Guard Aviation Logistics Center in Elizabeth City, North Carolina. U.S. Coast Guard photos.

The Navy hulls will be converted to the MH-60T configuration at the Coast Guard Aviation Logistics Center in Elizabeth City, North Carolina. The program awarded an indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity contact in January 2021 for the production of new hulls – consisting of three fuselage structure sections: the nose, mid (cabin) and transition – that will be engineered, manufactured and delivered in the MH-60T configuration. Use of new hulls provides an airframe service life of 20,000 flight hours, compared to an average service life of approximately 12,000 flight hours for the previously used Navy hulls. The remaining conversion activities – including replacement of dynamic components such as rotors and electrical rewiring – for all hulls will also be completed at ALC.

Structural hull replacement through new hull acquisition.


The MH-60T program was chartered in 2017 to evaluate and implement technical and mechanical solutions for extending MH-60T use through the 2030s. The sustainment effort is being implemented through form, fit and function replacements of the structural hull components, dynamic components such as the rotor, and electrical rewiring. Replacement of the structural hulls will be accomplished either through conversions of retired Navy SH-60F/HH-60H hulls into the MH-60T specification or through the procurement of newly manufactured hulls from the original equipment manufacturer that will be engineered, manufactured and delivered to the Coast Guard in the MH-60T specification.

The program achieved ADE-2A on Aug, 11, 2020, and was approved by the Department of Homeland Security to proceed to the next acquisition phase, the Obtain Phase. Appropriated funds are being used to support the non-recurring engineering and production of 31 new hulls.

The program’s scope is limited to the sustainment of MH-60T operations and does not include the fielding of any new capabilities. The existing MH-60T avionics components and software will continue to be used and maintained on the replacement hulls through decommissioning and disposal.


  • Length: 64 feet 10 inches
  • Rotor Diameter: 53 feet 8 inches
  • Height: 17 feet
  • Maximum Weight: 21,884 pounds
  • Cruise Speed: 170 knots
  • Range: 700 nautical miles
  • Service Ceiling: 13,000 feet
  • Endurance: 6.5 hours
  • Crew: four


  • Common avionics architecture system of digital glass cockpit instruments similar to those installed on the Coast Guard’s fixed-wing aircraft
  • Surface search radar and electro-optical/infrared sensors
  • Engines standard with the Department of Defense’s H-60 fleet
  • Five multifunction display screens
  • Sensor and hoist cameras
  • Integrated traffic collision avoidance system
  • 7.62 mm machine gun for firing warning shots and a 7.62 mm shoulder-fired weapon for precise targeting, such as disabling engines on noncompliant go-fast vessels
  • Standardized mission system components complementing capabilities and equipment installed on the Coast Guard’s upgraded MH-65 short range recovery helicopter

MRR: In the News


Jan. 23, 2024 - Coast Guard takes next steps toward all MH-60T helicopter fleet


April 25, 2023 - MH-60T new hull production underway for Coast Guard acquisition/sustainment program


July 27, 2022 - Coast Guard orders 11 new MH-60T hulls

Feb. 4, 2022 - Coast Guard awards wire harness contract for MH-60T sustainment effort


Aug. 20, 2021 - MH-60T Sustainment Program adds one additional hull to IDIQ contract

July 7, 2021 - MH-60T Sustainment program adds five hulls to IDIQ contract

Feb. 17, 2021 - Coast Guard installs first new wire harness kit for MH-60T sustainment effort

Jan. 21, 2021 - Coast Guard awards hull contract as part of MH-60T sustainment effort


March 20, 2018 - MH-60T Service Life Extension Program approved to proceed to next phase


Oct. 2, 2017 - Coast Guard, partner agencies provide aid to Utuado, Puerto Rico, residents


Dec. 12, 2016 - MH-60T Upgrade Program Transitions To Sustainment

Nov. 1, 2016 - Acquisition Update: Coast Guard Completes MH-60T Block 2 Upgrade


Dec. 8, 2015 - Acquisition Update: Coast Guard Takes Delivery Of Final Software Upgrade For MH-60T Helicopter


Feb. 19, 2014 - Acquisition Update: Final Jayhawk Completes Conversion to MH-60T Model


May 29, 2013 - H-60 Conversion Project Marks Significant Milestones, Begins Final MH-60J to MH-60T Transition

Jan. 3, 2013 - The Crew of MH-60T Jayhawk 6006 Conduct a Training Exercise Over Womens Bay July 13, 2012 in Kodiak, Alaska


The Coast Guard completed upgrades to its fleet of MH-60J Jayhawk medium range recovery helicopters in August 2016. Redesignated as MH-60Ts, the upgraded helicopters received new flight instruments and avionics, communications and navigation equipment.

For more information: MH-60T upgrade page