MH-53J Pave Low
The Pave Low helicopter is a Navy design that the Air Force has rebuilt to perform deep penetration missions in heavily defended airspace during night and adverse weather conditions. To give the Pave Low these abilities the Air Force heavily modified the avionics, loading it with advanced electronics, including terrain following radar,
, GPS and
are also mounted. In addition a there is a computer generated moving-map display to help cut down on the pilots workload.
There is extensive armor covering vital areas of the aircraft ( over 1,000 pounds ) and it can be armed with up to three 7.62 Miniguns or .50 cal machine guns. In addition the MH-53J is equipped with radar-warning receivers as well as chaff and flare launchers to help defend the aircraft from enemy missiles.
The Pave Low has the capacity to carry up to 38 troops or 14 litters, and can sling up to 20,000 lbs (9,000kg) with it's external cargo hook. It can reach top speeds of 165MPH (264Kph) and altitudes of up to 16,000 feet. Although the maximum range of the Pave Low is 630 Miles, it can fly virtually Indefinitely with in-flight refueling. The MH-53E is crewed by two pilots, two flight engineers, and two aerial gunners. In CSAR missions two USAF Pararescue medics will accompany the usual crew.