The H-92 Superhawk is a military version of the Sikorsky S-92 commercial helicopter. It was developed as a private venture and is fitted with more powerful engines, improved avionics, and has some other modifications.
It can be seen as a larger alternative to the UH-60 Black Hawk. The Superhawk has been delivered to the US Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard, but it has not received any production orders from the US military. Canada became the first customer of this military helicopter. In 2004, they ordered 28 H-92 Superhawks for their Maritime Helicopter Project. These are locally designated as CH-148 Cyclone.
Deliveries were planned to begin in 2009 but were delayed multiple times due to development problems. The first helicopters were delivered to Canada in 2015. Eventually, the S-92/H-92 has been ordered by other countries, including Bahrain, Ireland, Kuwait, South Korea, Thailand, and the United Kingdom.
A variant of this helicopter is used as a VIP transport to carry the US President. Interestingly, in 2015, Sikorsky won the contract to replace the aging Marine One fleet, which includes the VH-3D Sea King and VH-60N White Hawk, with the Sikorsky VH-92. However, these helicopters are modified from the civilian S-92 helicopter, using a 4-blade main rotor. A number of safety features were incorporated into the design of this helicopter.
In military configuration, this helicopter can carry 22 troops. The Canadian CH-148 can carry 3,175 kg externally on a hook.
This helicopter is powered by General Electric CT7-8A series engines developing around 3,000 shp each. These are more powerful than engines used on the civilian S-92 helicopter. The H-92 uses a 4-bladed main rotor. A number of safety features were incorporated into the design of this helicopter.
The Canadian Cyclone is used for anti-submarine warfare, surveillance, search and rescue missions, and can also provide tactical transport.
The VH-92 is a variant of the S-92 that will be used to fly the US President. In 2014, Sikorsky won the competition to replace the VH-3D Sea King and VH-60N White Hawk, which currently transport the US President. The first flight was made in 2017. Six of these helicopters were ordered for delivery in 2017.
Eventually, an additional 17 helicopters were ordered, and production is planned to begin in 2020. Out of these, 23 helicopters will be a total of 21 VH-92A helicopters used for VIP transport and 2 CH-92A helicopters will be used for training.