Last updated: 23 Sep 2021
The CH-53K is the United States Marine Corps’ (USMC) heavy lift replacement for the CH-53E. The most powerful helicopter in the Department of Defense, the CH-53K is a new-build helicopter that will expand the fleet’s ability to move more material, more rapidly throughout the area of responsibility using proven and mature technologies. Four aircraft are currently in Initial Operational Test and Evaluation with Operational Test and Evaluation Squadron, VMX-1, at Marine Corps Air Station New River, NC. There are currently 33 program aircraft, either delivered or on contract.
Designed to lift 27,000 lbs/12,247 kg at a mission radius of 110 nautical miles (203 km), in Navy high/hot environments, the CH-53K is capable of lifting almost triple the baseline CH-53E lift capability. It is also designed to have a smaller shipboard footprint, lower operating costs per aircraft, and less direct maintenance man hours per flight hour. The CH-53K is currently on track for first fleet deployment in FY2024, in alignment with Marine Corps schedules and requirements. The USMC’s procurement objective is 200 helicopters.
The CH-53K is the Marine Corps' heavy lift replacement for the CH-53E. There are four aircraft currently in Initial Operational Test and Evaluation with Operational Test and Evaluation Squadron, VMX-1, logging more than 2500 flight test hours. Delivery to the Marine Corps for operational squadron deployment is expected in FY2024, in alignment with Marine Corps schedules and requirements. The Marine Corps' procurement objective is 200 helicopters.
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