Updated with the latest technology, Boeing’s new F-15EX features an affordable capability in the field and is ready to go now due to a continuous production line, according to the company. Furthermore, the aircraft is able to work together with stealth fighters.
The US Air Force (USAF) will request eight F-15EX fighters in its budget, planning to buy 80 fighters over five years. According to Boeing, the aircraft could start being delivered next year, if the USAF decides to buy it.
The new aircraft, currently only envisioned as a two-seater, will feature conformal fuel tanks to give it a longer range, a digital fly-by-wire control system, a new Advanced Display Core Processor II (ADCPII) mission computer (for which the company was awarded a a U$91.2 million contract on ) April), an advanced crew station with an 10x19in LAD, the Eagle Passive Active Warning Survivability System (EPAWSS) for protection from air-to-air missiles and the advanced APG-82 active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar by Raytheon.
Aircraft equipped with the APG-82(V)1 AESA radar can simultaneously detect, identify and track multiple air and surface targets at longer ranges than ever before. The longer standoff range facilitates persistent target observation and information sharing for informed decision making. This superior battlespace awareness supports greater tactical mission capability.
The radar also includes a new cooling system and Radio Frequency Tunable Filters (RFTF). RFTF is designed to enable the radar and the electronic warfare hardware (jamming) to operate simultaneously without degrading each other.
Most of the updates are already flying in F-15s produced for other countries, with research and development already paid for by nations such as Qatar and Saudi Arabia. While the EX is only applicable for US customers, versions of F-15 Advanced are already with international customer (see above).
As stated above, the F-15EX is meant to complement stealth fighters and at U$80 million an inexpensive way to bring extended firepower.