Israel is likely to place an order for 18 CH-53K King Stallion helicopters worth $3.4 billion, now that it has received the green light from the United States.
On Friday, the U.S. State Department approved a Foreign Military Sale to Israel that includes the provision of related support and equipment, aside from the Lockheed Martin-manufactured helicopters. The aircraft will be the largest and heaviest helicopter in the U.S. military.
The Israel Ministry of Defense announced in February that it chose CH-53K as its next heavy-lift helicopter, over Boeing’s CH-47 Chinook. The new chopper will replace the country’s five decades-old CH-53D Sea Stallion Yasur helicopter.
Germany has also been choosing between CH-53Ks and Chinooks to replace its old CH-53G fleet.
The Government of Israel intends to buy 18 CH-53K Heavy Lift Helicopters; up to sixty T408-GE-400 Engines (54 installed, 6 spares) produced by General Electric; and up to thirty-six Embedded Global Positioning System/Inertial Navigation Systems (EGI) with Selective Availability/Anti-Spoofing Module (SAASM).
The deal will also include communication equipment; GAU-21 .50 caliber Machine Guns; Mission Planning System; facilities study, design and construction; spare and repair parts; support and test equipment; publications and technical documentation; aircrew and maintenance training; U.S. Government and contractor engineering, technical, and logistics support services; and other related elements of logistics and program support. The total estimated cost is $3.4 billion.