Black Hawk prototype faces fielding delay without reprogramming

By Maximilian Kwiatkowski / July 17, 2018 at 1:07 PM

The Army will be forced to delay fielding its Black Hawk UH-60V prototype if Congress does not approve the Defense Department's fiscal year 2018 omnibus reprogramming request, according to DOD.

The service seeks to realign $15.2 million in research, development, test and evaluation funding to speed up developmental flight testing of the UH-60V, as well as fielding and development of training support.

The request points to issues with the Army having to rely on the current UH-60L model's analog cockpit system, which "reduces situational awareness, increases pilot workload and decreases mission readiness," according to the request obtained by Inside Defense.

The same amount would be shifted from the procurement budget for UH-60A and UH-60L models, as well as for aircraft survivability equipment, $15.2 million each.

The request cites a decreased need for UH-60V kits, with only three of the seven currently funded kits required to equip the first unit by FY-21. The survivability equipment is also in less demand due to a reduction of aircraft that require work to install a radar receiver and electronic warfare system, the request states.

The Soldier Borne Sensor program could also see a multimillion-dollar realignment -- an additional $21 million going to procure the miniature UASs for infantry brigade combat teams.