The Czech aircraft manufacturer and subcontractor Aero Vodochody and Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation, a member of the Lockheed Martin Group, have extended their contract on Black Hawk helicopters, the Czech media, including Novinky.cz, reports. The company has been producing cockpits for Black Hawk helicopters since 2011. The contract has now been extended to 2023.
Aero Vodochody began production of fully-equipped cockpits for UH-60M Black Hawk helicopters for Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation in 2011 and so far that cooperation has proven very successful. Company spokesman Tobiáš Tvrdík confirmed that the firm will continue to deliver up until 2023. The president of Aero Vodochody Giuseppe Giordo called the extension of the contract by more than five years “a sign of [Aero Vodochody’s] reliability” and also of the company’s “strong relationship with the customer”.
Aero delivers Black Hawk cockpits as a dual-source to Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation, which belongs to Lockheed Martin group. By the end of May 2017, Aero delivered 240 cockpits for UH-60Ms. Aero and Sikorsky also cooperate on the S-76 program, the company said, where Aero produces the entire helicopter airframe ready for the installation of dynamic parts. These programs were a demonstration of Aero’s capabilities in helicopter production, the company said.
In terms of international cooperation, Aero Vodochody has built a reputation as a risk-sharing partner to main aerospace companies, working, for example, with Embraer on KC-390 program and with Bombardier on the CSeries aircraft program. In the future, Aero is hoping to extend production in the helicopter sector.