ARLINGTON, Va. – The Marine Corps VH-92A presidential support helicopter has reached initial operating capability, according to the Department of the Navy.
The VH-92A, built by Lockheed Martin, underwent testing and crew training and reached IOC on December 28, 2021. No announcement from the program office was made at the time. The IOC was announced in the Navy Department’s fiscal year 2023 budget highlights book that was released in mid-April.
The arrival of the VH-92A at the IOC was confirmed April 26 during a hearing of the Seapower Subcommittee of the Senate Armed Services Committee by Frederick Stefany, who serves as Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, the development and acquisition.
“We have reached the IOC for VH-92 – the presidential helicopter – and we are now beginning the commissioning process with the White House to integrate this helicopter into the White House fleet,” Stefany said.
The presidential helicopter fleet is flown by Marine Helicopter Squadron One (VMX-1). Currently, VMX-1 flies the VH-3D Sea King and VH-60N Black Hawk helicopters.
The fiscal year 2023 budget proposal funds the VH-92A program at $45.6 billion and “continues to develop product enhancements for phased integration into the VH-92A capability base to include enhancements to broadband line of sight”. [WBLOS] communications capability, cockpit upgrades, government-supplied equipment, onboard interoperability, software upgrades, and begins developing product enhancements for distributed network communications and vehicle performance enhancements.
The planned VH-92A fleet will include 21 operational aircraft and two test aircraft. Full operational capability of the VH-92A is scheduled for the second quarter of fiscal year 2023.