MH-60K Black Hawk
The advanced MH-60K are highly specialized helicopters designed for special operations support missions and are operated by the elite 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (SOAR).
MH-60s flown by SOAR operators carried Delta Force and Ranger troops into action in Mogadishu as part of Operation Gothic Serpent, the US attempt to arrest Somali warlord General Mohamed Farrah Aidid. 2 MH-60s were shot down by ground fire in events depicted in the 2001 film, Black Hawk Down.
The MH-60K is based around the UH-60a Black Hawk the US Army's main utility helicopter. The MH-60K boasts more powerful engines and a suite of electronic countermeasures and navigational aids. As iits role demands, the MH-60K carries a terrain-following radar to enable extremely low-level flying levels in all weathers and at night and a set of wire cutting blades are fitted to the fuselage. a forward-looking infra-red (FLIR) sensor further enables all-weather/day/night operation. The MH-60K features advanced night-vision-compatible cockpits with Multi-Function Displays (MFDs).
MH-60Ks feature provision for various pintle-mounted door guns, the most common being 2xM134 7.62mm miniguns, one each side, although .50 cal machine guns or M240D 7.62mm belt-fed machine guns may also be mounted.
To enable rapid deployment around the globe, the MH-60K features folding components and can be transported by air or stowed aboard aircraft carriers. The helicopter's range ca be extended with the fitting of 2x230 gallon external fuel tanks. Both these external tanks and the MH-60K's main tanks can be replenished via the extendable air-to-air refueling probe.
The MH-60K is packed with specialized avionics including an APQ-174 terrain-following radar and a Raytheon AAQ-16 FLIR.
MH-60K Black Hawk from the 160th SOAR fitted with 2x230 gallon external fuel tanks.
Photo Courtesy US Army
SOAR C&C Black Hawk | MH-60 SOAR Black Hawk | MH-60K SOAR Black Hawk
Info on the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment