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Author Topic: USAF plans F-15 modernization  (Read 69296 times)

Offline Triton

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USAF plans F-15 modernization
« on: August 20, 2012, 10:07:07 am »
USAF plans F-15 modernization, but pilots want better displays

By:   Dave Majumdar Washington DC
08:58 17 Aug 2012
Source:
http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/usaf-plans-f-15-modernization-but-pilots-want-better-displays-375612/
 

The US Air Force is planning a host of upgrades for its fleet of Boeing F-15Cs and F-15Es, but pilots say that without upgraded displays, they will not be able to take full advantage of those enhanced systems.

On the two-seat multirole F-15E Strike Eagle, the air force is planning to add the new Raytheon APG-82(V)1 active electronically-scanned array (AESA) radar, a new advanced display core processor II (ADCP II) mission computer, a new electronic warfare system dubbed the Eagle passive/active warning and survivability system (EPAWSS), a digital video recorder, Mode 5 identification friend or foe (IFF), and a joint helmet mounted cueing system (JHMCS) for the front seat, says a senior air force official at the F-15 system program office (SPO) at Robins AFB, Georgia. The aircraft will also receive a series of software block updates.

The air force plans to furnish the single-seat F-15C air superiority fighter fleet with a similar upgrade. The F-15C is already receiving the Raytheon APG-63(V) 3 AESA, but it will also receive the ADCP II, EPAWSS, Mode 5 IFF, a new flight data recorder, a satellite communications (SATCOM) radio, and a new digital video recorder, the F-15 SPO official says. The F-15 will also receive a series of software block updates.

Pilots applaud the improved sensors, but point out that without a major overhaul to the aircraft's displays, they will not be able to take full advantage of those new systems. "Those look like great upgrades. The part I see that is lacking is in the displays," says one highly experienced former F-15 pilot. "You have these phenomenal subsystems, but if you can't provide [sensor data] in a meaningful way to the operator, it doesn't matter."

The radar display on the F-15C is particularly problematic. "The F-15C has a phenomenal radar, but the info is displayed on a tiny four by four [inch] scope," the pilot says. Even the F-15E, which has a much more modern glass cockpit, will not be able to fully utilize the information generated by the new sensors without further modernization.

The USAF is not currently considering adding, for example, the large area display or decoupled cockpits that Boeing is offering to international F-15E customers. "However, we continue to look for opportunities to leverage to meet the warfighter's needs," the F-15 SPO official says.

The APG-82 development effort for the F-15E is continuing, the F-15 SPO official says. The new radar marries the AESA antenna from the APG-63(V) 3 with the backend electronics from the Boeing F/A-18E/F's Raytheon APG-79 AESA radar-currently in service with the US Navy. "Operational testing will start in March 2013," the official says. "The first production installation is scheduled for early fiscal year 2014."

Meanwhile, the air force has started planning for the development and integration of the EPAWSS. The service hopes to award an engineering and manufacturing development (EMD) contract in the second quarter of fiscal year 2015, the official says.

To take better advantage of the new radar and electronic warfare systems, and also to enable further upgrades, the F-15 must integrate the ADCP II computer. The air force hopes to start development of the ADCP II with a "Milestone B" decision in November 2012, the F-15 SPO official says. The first F-15E installation is planned for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2016 while the F-15C will receive the new computer in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2017.

The USAF also hopes to add an infrared search and track (IRST) capability to the F-15C, which could significantly boost the air-to-air capability of the venerable air superiority fighter. "The IRST program will restart in fiscal year 2015," the official says. But "the F-15E will not receive the IRST" because it is not primarily tasked with air-to-air missions.

Further modernization is a foregone conclusion as both versions of the F-15 are expected to remain in USAF service into the 2030s. Fortunately for the air force, the F-15 airframe is robust and should be able serve well into the future, the F-15 SPO official says.

"There is currently no projected requirement for a major structural mod program. Numerous structural improvements have been incorporated throughout the life of both F-15C and E models," he says. "Many parts have been redesigned to eliminate structural issues identified during service."

One of the unique features of the F 15 is that "it has very robust programmed depot maintenance (PDM) which includes a complete wing overhaul." The aircraft's structure will continue to be sustained through this PDM process, the F-15 SPO official says.

But the USAF is also working to increase the F-15's service life though structural testing.

"Previous F-15E full scale testing successfully demonstrated 16,000 flight hours of operational usage with no catastrophic failures or evidence of life limiting fatigue issues. The current fleet average is approximately 9,000 hours," the official says. "A contract for additional testing was awarded in [fiscal year 2010] to recertify the F-15E structure for service to 2035 based on current/projected flying hours and usage severity." Testing in the Strike Eagle should be completed by September 2015.

F-15C full scale testing has already demonstrated 18,000 flight hours of operational usage "with no catastrophic failures or evidence of life limiting fatigue issues. The current fleet average is approximately 8,600 hours," the F-15 SPO official says. The air force awarded a contract for additional testing on the jet in fiscal year 2009 to recertify the F-15C's structure to push its service life out to 2030. That is "based on current/projected flying hours and usage severity," the official says.

Testing on the F-15C should be complete by September 2014.

Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #1 on: August 20, 2012, 10:48:42 am »
F-15C full scale testing has already demonstrated 18,000 flight hours of operational usage "with no catastrophic failures or evidence of life limiting fatigue issues.

Which begs the question how many hours did the F-15 lost to a failed longeron have?
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Offline Michel Van

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #2 on: August 20, 2012, 12:10:40 pm »
oh dear, after F-22 program stop
will the F-15 become the fighter counterpart of B-52 ?
still in service in 2040...
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Offline Triton

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #3 on: August 20, 2012, 12:39:24 pm »
In February, it was announced that the US Air Force planned on modernizing 350 F-16 fighter aircraft.

Source:
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/02/03/us-exclusive-usa-fighters-lockheedmartin-idUSTRE81200H20120203

Offline Triton

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #4 on: August 20, 2012, 12:50:31 pm »
oh dear, after F-22 program stop
will the F-15 become the fighter counterpart of B-52 ?
still in service in 2040...

Does the Air National Guard and the United States Air Force really require that its enter fleet of fighters and strike fighters have low observable (stealth) technology? Is it really an "old" airplane if it has undergone a service life extension and upgrade radars and other systems.

Offline pometablava

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #5 on: August 20, 2012, 02:00:11 pm »
why not?,
the F-15 is still a useful aircraft and it can fill the gap untill the arrival of UCAV

Offline Sea Skimmer

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #6 on: August 20, 2012, 09:22:48 pm »
Which begs the question how many hours did the F-15 lost to a failed longeron have?


5,700, but the piece failed because it wasn't built right in the first place. That is something full scale testing of a single air frame can't save you from, but it also means repairing it wasn't that hard.

Offline Trident

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #7 on: August 22, 2012, 08:47:41 am »
What Sea Skimmer said - the problem with the longeron failure was not some kind of previously unknown fatigue issue with the structure as designed/tested, it was caused by a part not having been manufactured to the correct specification.

Offline John21

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #8 on: August 24, 2012, 12:26:18 am »
Quote
The USAF is not currently considering adding, for example, the large area display or decoupled cockpits that Boeing is offering to international F-15E customers. "However, we continue to look for opportunities to leverage to meet the warfighter's needs," the F-15 SPO official says.

For the price of a couple of F-35s they could replace all the older CRT and LCD displays in our F-15s and F-16s, but noooooo...

I'm glad they're improving our older aircraft but it seems compared to new built F-15s for South Korea and Singapore & Saudi Arabia along with all those block 60+ F-16s being manufactured it is kind of lacking. Sure we have our 195 F-22s and F-35s but other countries will be buying and upgrading those F-35s while other countries develop and sell their own 4++ and 5th generation fighters.

Quote
The USAF also hopes to add an infrared search and track (IRST) capability to the F-15C, which could significantly boost the air-to-air capability of the venerable air superiority fighter. "The IRST program will restart in fiscal year 2015," the official says. But "the F-15E will not receive the IRST" because it is not primarily tasked with air-to-air missions.

We had IRST since the 1950s and had it on our F-14s, what the heck is taking so long for something many other countries develop, buy and use? Never should have gotten rid of our F-14s, we could have at least used its IRST or a design based off of it for improvements to our aircraft.

« Last Edit: August 24, 2012, 12:31:49 am by John21 »

Offline fightingirish

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #9 on: September 18, 2014, 03:48:15 am »

Boeing is building four pods to be mounted on the USAF F-15 Eagle's under the Talon Hate program.
These pods will contain an infrared search and track sensor (IRST) and data-links systems like the Multifunctional Information Distribution System-JTRS (or MIDS-J) terminal, that will allow the F-22 to share its information with USAF legacy fighters.
Quote
Boeing has completed the final design review for a U.S. Air Force system, called Talon HATE, to improve communication and information sharing among various platforms. Talon HATE combines information from fighter networks, national sources and joint command and control assets. Transmitting over data-links, the information can then be used by joint aircraft, ships and ground stations, improving communication and information sharing across the battlespace.
The Talon HATE system is designed to initially be carried in a pod attached to Boeing’s F-15C fighter aircraft as shown in this artist’s concept. It combines information from fighter networks, national sources and joint command and control assets. Boeing is on schedule to deliver several Talon HATE systems to operational squadrons in 2015.


Source: Boeing Completes Design Review for U.S. Air Force’s Talon HATE Program
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Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #10 on: September 18, 2014, 05:06:26 am »
I hope that "pod" has 500 gallons of fuel as well else it should be the size of a Sniper pod. 
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Offline TomS

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #11 on: September 18, 2014, 05:37:49 am »
It looks like the IRST is pretty big -- not a boresight sensor but something with quite a wide field of view.  I suspect it's meant to cue other aircraft across a pretty broad area, not just the carrier.  Throw in SATCOM, a couple of different datalinks, and a MIDS modem (in a quick and dirty non-optimized design) and it's not surprising that it's pretty large.
 
I get the impression that the idea for this pod is to use the equipped aircraft as coordinators to direct large operations like offensive counter-air sweeps with a mix of F-15s and F-22s.

Offline F-14D

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #12 on: September 18, 2014, 07:10:21 pm »
It looks like the IRST is pretty big -- not a boresight sensor but something with quite a wide field of view.  I suspect it's meant to cue other aircraft across a pretty broad area, not just the carrier.  Throw in SATCOM, a couple of different datalinks, and a MIDS modem (in a quick and dirty non-optimized design) and it's not surprising that it's pretty large.
 
I get the impression that the idea for this pod is to use the equipped aircraft as coordinators to direct large operations like offensive counter-air sweeps with a mix of F-15s and F-22s.

The IRST itself is not that big, I'm pretty sure it's a later version of the IRST the F-14D carried internally.  About 9" diameter and a bit over 3 ' long.  Field of view is +/- 70 ° in azimuth and elevation.  It's already on the F-15SGs and later Ks and may show up on other export Eagles.   As you can see it is compact enough that you can even hang another sensor/designator pod underneath it. 

Like you said, the use of the big tank is so that they can throw a lot of other stuff onto th eEagle for which it doesn't have the internal volume.  There's another perspective on it here:
http://www.defenseindustrydaily.com/f-18-super-hornets-to-get-irst-03429/  under the heading,
IRST Future: A SpectIR for all Teens?
« Last Edit: September 18, 2014, 07:14:25 pm by F-14D »

Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #13 on: September 18, 2014, 07:15:26 pm »
I guess I just don't understand why, if Japan can do it right, why can't we?

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Offline Grey Havoc

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #14 on: September 19, 2014, 03:00:25 am »
I guess I just don't understand why, if Japan can do it right, why can't we?

It's not all roses for Japan in that area. Look at the ongoing (AFAIK) RF-15 [not to be confused with SNEAK PEAK] dispute. Long story short, a previous government cancelled a contract with Toshiba to convert 8 MSIP F-15DJs to RF-15 standard with podded SAR, along with optical and infrared capability. (The Government at the time had social programs to pay for after all.) Unfortunately for them, they used the old saw of unilaterally changing the contract specs, and then while the contractor was trying to meet the changed specs, declared default & Cancelled for Cause, with a ¥1.2 billion yen damages claim on the side. I say unfortunately, because Toshiba refused to play along and sued for ¥9.3 billion in damages. Tricks that work in Western style contract law tend not work so well in Japanese style contract law (which is probably why there have been recent attempts by 'reformers' to supplant the latter with the former in Japanese contracts).
« Last Edit: September 19, 2014, 03:32:22 am by Grey Havoc »
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Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #15 on: September 19, 2014, 07:15:25 am »
I guess I just don't understand why, if Japan can do it right, why can't we?

It's not all roses for Japan in that area. Look at the ongoing (AFAIK) RF-15 [not to be confused with SNEAK PEAK] dispute. Long story short, a previous government cancelled a contract with Toshiba to convert 8 MSIP F-15DJs to RF-15 standard with podded SAR, along with optical and infrared capability. (The Government at the time had social programs to pay for after all.) Unfortunately for them, they used the old saw of unilaterally changing the contract specs, and then while the contractor was trying to meet the changed specs, declared default & Cancelled for Cause, with a ¥1.2 billion yen damages claim on the side. I say unfortunately, because Toshiba refused to play along and sued for ¥9.3 billion in damages. Tricks that work in Western style contract law tend not work so well in Japanese style contract law (which is probably why there have been recent attempts by 'reformers' to supplant the latter with the former in Japanese contracts).

How does this relate to the IRST on the F-15J?
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Offline F-14D

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #16 on: September 19, 2014, 10:14:07 am »
I guess I just don't understand why, if Japan can do it right, why can't we?

I suspect it's that until fairly recently, USAF has not been a fan of IRST  capability and so never wanted it.   

Offline John21

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #17 on: September 21, 2014, 03:42:24 am »
We used to have IRST on the F-101,102,106,4,8,14. Why did we suddenly seem to lose interest in the past 20-30 years? It's seems to be a pretty simple capability we could have kept around for only a fairly small investment in time and money.

Could pods such as ATFLIR, Litening, SNIPER-XP...etc be used in a similar way, maybe fusing what they see to the radar display? Although it probably would not be as accurate as a dedicated IRST sensor.
« Last Edit: September 21, 2014, 03:48:01 am by John21 »

Offline F-14D

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #18 on: September 24, 2014, 07:04:01 pm »
 

We used to have IRST on the F-101,102,106,4,8,14. Why did we suddenly seem to lose interest in the past 20-30 years? It's seems to be a pretty simple capability we could have kept around for only a fairly small investment in time and money.
 
Could pods such as ATFLIR, Litening, SNIPER-XP...etc be used in a similar way, maybe fusing what they see to the radar display? Although it probably would not be as accurate as a dedicated IRST sensor.
 

 Probably more than anyone cares to read, but...

The IR on those earlier a/c (note that in the case of those three USAF aircraft they were all interceptors), IR was mostly detection and not really intended to supply a usable track, mostly just search and detect.  Plus, an image was not formed, just a detection.  Also, they were add-ons not designed in from the start.  In the case of the F-4, the USN from the beginning planned for the F-4B to have a more advanced IR sensor with limited track  capability, but it proved to be maintenance intensive and not worth the trouble in the real work environment in which the F-4 was operating, so it was removed. 
 
 
The F-14A (originally) had a more advanced IR scanning sensor.  It could scan independently of the radar or be slaved to it.  In the latter case it was useful to compensate for the problem beam width error.  For example, if Maverick and Goose's F-14 had had that sensor, the" MiG-28s" would not have been able to sneak up on them at the beginning of the movie before they were exposed as multiples.  They would have seen the single radar returns, but collocated would have been two distinct heat sources which would have given the game away. It worked, but again there were maintainability issues with this more advanced piece of equipment, so it was discontinued.
 
The F-14D used the AN/AAS-42, a much more advanced type.  It had full search and track capability operating in conjunction with the radar, TCS or independently.  Reportedly it could track, "...at Phoenix ranges", which could probably be translated as "beyond AIM-120 range".   Full sensor fusion was planned for the F-14D, although offhand I can't remember how much actually got implemented after Cheney killed the aircraft.  On the tactical display the computer generated imagery could be synthesized from a combination of the APG-71 radar and the AAS-42.  If one sensor lost track through countermeasures or whatever, the go other could bring it back on target.  The IRST imagery was slated to also be displayed on the HUD and could be correlated with the TCS as well.   Again, how much of that actually got done I don't know. Imagery from the AAS-42 and it's remarkable, looks like a decent black and white movie, images fully formed.  Detects curvature and the like and can identify aircraft types when combined with the right database processor.    I imagine the latest PIRATE may have  similar capabilities   

Until recently USAF hasn't been much interested in IR/IRST /optical systems for fighters, preferring  to hang their hat mostly on radar.  Lately, though, their own work with stealth technology has convinced them they need another arrow in the quiver. 



Although ATFLIR and Sniper have been played with in the air-to-air mode, they really aren't that effective.  Their resolution (like you said) and scan is slower (modern IRSTs can scan faster than an AESA), because for what they are intended to do it's not needed.  OTOH, they are designed to operate longer.  One of the improvements to the AAS-42 planned back in the '90s was to have a seeker head that would go more than 50 hours before having to be rebuilt.   This life was acceptable because an IRST doesn't have to operate on a mission for as long a period as a FLIR.  Still, the longer the better. 



Besides there's no need to go to the trouble of adapting those devices.  You can just buy the An/AAS-42.  It was on the F-14D, a  version is on export Strike Eagles, USAF uses it on Aggressor F-16s and a later version is going to go into a centerline fuel tank on the Hornet E/F (Hey! I thought they said one of the Super Bug's benefits was that it would have so much more internal space for new systems!) and on USAF F-15s it's going to be in a multipurpose centerline pod.   Why spend the bucks to adapt something not as good (in this role) when you can buy the AN/AAS-42 , I mean "IRST21" as it's now marketed, off the shelf. 

 
« Last Edit: September 25, 2014, 11:18:43 am by F-14D »

Offline marauder2048

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #19 on: September 24, 2014, 10:08:35 pm »


AN/AAS-42 IRST footage at 19 seconds in.

Offline F-14D

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #20 on: September 25, 2014, 11:22:34 am »
AN/AAS-42 IRST footage at 19 seconds in.

...and it's been significantly improved since that early marketing-level video was made.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #21 on: September 25, 2014, 11:57:50 am »
F-14D - Thanx. Good background - and note attached LM graphic showing that range exceeds radar.


I was never quite sure what got IRST thrown off ATF (or consigned to the future-upgrade list) but the basic line was "it didn't earn its way on board" - which may have meant that, at the time, the other sensors (LPI radar, EW and offboard) were considered enough to enable detection/track/ID without the attacker being detected. However, adversary RCS reduction and EW improvements will have moved those goalposts.



As for Selex (Pirate and Skyward-G), the story I hear is that processing has done a very good job of reducing false alarm rates in a cluttered environment (Europe). Multiplatform, fusion and dynamic ranging (weave and measure the bearing change) help provide a range measurement. And it is of course independent of RCS and EW.


As for the Bug integration, it's a little harder when you need a window looking forward.




Offline F-14D

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #22 on: September 26, 2014, 11:31:09 am »
F-14D - Thanx. Good background - and note attached LM graphic showing that range exceeds radar.


I was never quite sure what got IRST thrown off ATF (or consigned to the future-upgrade list) but the basic line was "it didn't earn its way on board" - which may have meant that, at the time, the other sensors (LPI radar, EW and offboard) were considered enough to enable detection/track/ID without the attacker being detected. However, adversary RCS reduction and EW improvements will have moved those goalposts.



As for Selex (Pirate and Skyward-G), the story I hear is that processing has done a very good job of reducing false alarm rates in a cluttered environment (Europe). Multiplatform, fusion and dynamic ranging (weave and measure the bearing change) help provide a range measurement. And it is of course independent of RCS and EW.


As for the Bug integration, it's a little harder when you need a window looking forward.

I suspect IRST got removed from the F-22 because at the time USAF had a history and culture of not being a fan of non-radar  issues r on fighters.  Both Northrop and Lockheed's proposals envisioned IRST on production versions (I believe the F-22 would use an enhanced system developed from the AAS-42), and for NATF it was an absolute requirement.  After the award, as development began, USAF decided it didn't want IRST that badly and so offered it up as a cost reduction measure.  It shouldn't be forgotten that USAF also wanted to remove AIM-9 capability, arguing that since no one would get close enough to an F-22 where an AIM-9 would be relevant, they could reduce cots and complexity by just getting rid of it (Interestingly, though, they still would keep the gun). 

Regarding the Super Bug, it's just about as big as the F-14D, yet somehow there's not room on the "more room for new systems" nose for the AN/AAS-42. 

Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #23 on: September 26, 2014, 11:40:15 am »
Regarding the Super Bug, it's just about as big as the F-14D, yet somehow there's not room on the "more room for new systems" nose for the AN/AAS-42.

Pretty sure the Tomcat's forward fuselage has a lot more volume.
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Offline F-14D

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #24 on: September 26, 2014, 08:43:22 pm »
Regarding the Super Bug, it's just about as big as the F-14D, yet somehow there's not room on the "more room for new systems" nose for the AN/AAS-42.

Pretty sure the Tomcat's forward fuselage has a lot more volume.

Of course it does, a byproduct of accommodating that enormous antenna.  I was just being snarky because back when the Super Bug was being pushed one of the things emphasized was how much more internal volume it had to accommodate future systems.   

Getting back on topic,  my previous post shows it fits quite nicely in a pylon,  Low Observable's graphic show sit on the port intake station of an F-16 and this pic from the Aviationist shows it on an Aggressor F-16 on the starboard one.  It's not that big,  the reason USAF is putting "IRST21" in a centerline pod on the F-15C  is  because it enables them to carry other equipment they want to carry as well, not because they have to, as on the Super Hornet.   These two pics show the difference in the size of the installation on the two aircraft, the Eagle carrying the IRST and other systems, the SH carrying the IRST and fuel. 
« Last Edit: September 26, 2014, 08:48:44 pm by F-14D »

Online bring_it_on

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #25 on: December 15, 2014, 06:46:03 am »


From an F-15C perspective, I feel if the Talon Hate pods were going to be a permanent fixture anyways then it makes a lot of sense to save the money on integration and strap on an IRST 21/SpectIR onto them
« Last Edit: December 15, 2014, 06:49:52 am by bring_it_on »
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Offline fightingirish

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #26 on: February 12, 2015, 01:35:27 pm »

Just found via Twitter, that Lockheed Martin has unveiled the Legion Pod. It is shown on F-15Cs and F-15Es so far, so it might me the LM's IRST- and Network upgrade proposal for the F-15 family.
Quote
Sensing and Networking for Targeting
Legion Pod is a multi-function sensor system that supports collaborative targeting operations in radar-denied environments. Flexible by design and production-ready, Legion Pod is set to serve as the next sensor system of choice for fixed-wing aircraft.
Using Lockheed Martin’s IRST21 sensor, networking and advanced processing technology, Legion Pod provides high-fidelity detection and tracking of air-to-air targets. Its plug-and-play architecture also makes it easily transportable across numerous platforms, including fighter and non-fighter aircraft.
Designed for flexibility, Legion Pod accommodates additional sensors within its current structure, acting as a multi-function sensor suite without costly aircraft or system modifications. This ensures it can meet both current and emerging customer requirements.
Housed in a 16-inch diameter structure, Legion Pod’s baseline configuration includes an advanced processor and datalink capability in addition to its infrared search and track technology. With capabilities unmatched by other targeting systems and the ability to accommodate additional sensors at low cost, Legion Pod fulfills warfighters’ critical needs and sets itself apart from the competition.
Link: Lockheed Martin - Legion Pod
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Offline pathology_doc

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #27 on: February 13, 2015, 05:57:40 am »
Why would you put your IR sensor into an external tank that you may need to dump for speed, agility and reduced weight?

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #28 on: February 13, 2015, 06:10:20 am »
Why would you put your IR sensor into an external tank that you may need to dump for speed, agility and reduced weight?

1. Dumping a pod this small is going to make very little difference in speed, agility or weight.

2.  IRST in a pod is better than no IRST.
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Offline TomS

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #29 on: February 13, 2015, 06:22:54 am »
Legion isn't that small (16 inches diameter, 98 inches long, roughly 550 pounds).  But it's not just an ISRT either -- it's got a bunch of datalinks and room for other unspecified sensors (perhaps a next-gen HARM Targeting system, for example).
 
Putting expensive sensors in pods isn't exactly new -- Pave Tack ring a bell, anyone?  You don't dump them unless it's that or losing the aircraft.
 
 
 
 

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #30 on: February 13, 2015, 06:38:14 am »
Depending on the attachment system, it might be just plain impossible to eject anyway.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #32 on: June 30, 2015, 10:19:39 pm »
Legion Pod Completes First Flight Test

7/1/2015

​Lockheed Martin’s Legion Pod successfully tracked multiple airborne targets during its first flight test aboard an F-16 aircraft flying from the company’s Forth Worth, Texas, facility. The multi-function sensor system, which was integrated on the F-16 “without making any hardware or software changes to the aircraft,” is available to meet USAF requirements for the F-15C infrared search and track program of record, according to a June 30 company release. More flight tests are expected on both F-16s and F-15Cs this year. “With our most advanced hardware and software, a hot production line, and an established logistics depot, Legion Pod provides a high-performance, low-risk, affordable capability to warfighters today,” said Paul Lemmo, vice president of Lockheed’s missile and fire control
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #33 on: July 01, 2015, 01:38:01 am »
These pod systems are all hanging low underneath the aircraft. Are they meant more for ground targets, and lesser for air to air? It seems the entire top view of the IRST pod is going to be unable to "see" the front/top view above the aircraft fuselage and nose in turns and if a target is approaching from above.
« Last Edit: July 01, 2015, 01:39:34 am by kcran567 »

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #34 on: July 01, 2015, 02:53:30 am »
These pod systems are all hanging low underneath the aircraft. Are they meant more for ground targets, and lesser for air to air? It seems the entire top view of the IRST pod is going to be unable to "see" the front/top view above the aircraft fuselage and nose in turns and if a target is approaching from above.

You can fly at higher altitudes and have multiple aircraft spaced when it comes to altitudes. I believe that these pods also have data links to share information with other pod users.
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Offline Pioneer

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #35 on: July 08, 2015, 07:01:34 pm »
Quote
The USAF is not currently considering adding, for example, the large area display or decoupled cockpits that Boeing is offering to international F-15E customers. "However, we continue to look for opportunities to leverage to meet the warfighter's needs," the F-15 SPO official says.

For the price of a couple of F-35s they could replace all the older CRT and LCD displays in our F-15s and F-16s, but noooooo...

I'm glad they're improving our older aircraft but it seems compared to new built F-15s for South Korea and Singapore & Saudi Arabia along with all those block 60+ F-16s being manufactured it is kind of lacking. Sure we have our 195 F-22s and F-35s but other countries will be buying and upgrading those F-35s while other countries develop and sell their own 4++ and 5th generation fighters.

Quote
The USAF also hopes to add an infrared search and track (IRST) capability to the F-15C, which could significantly boost the air-to-air capability of the venerable air superiority fighter. "The IRST program will restart in fiscal year 2015," the official says. But "the F-15E will not receive the IRST" because it is not primarily tasked with air-to-air missions.

We had IRST since the 1950s and had it on our F-14s, what the heck is taking so long for something many other countries develop, buy and use? Never should have gotten rid of our F-14s, we could have at least used its IRST or a design based off of it for improvements to our aircraft.

I like the way you think John21!! :P ;)
But may I add.......

Unfortunately and most regrettably the “infrared search and track (IRST) capability” on the F-15A/C Eagle is some 40 years too late! It could and should have been a part of the design during its design process (along with the intended and warranted all aspect AIM-82 or later AIM-95 Agile IR missile). But I guess with the USAF’s obsessive (and successful) cry of a ‘Fighter Gap’ (just as it had successfully done with its deliberate and orchestrated ‘Bomber and Missile Gap’ catch cry) in response to the Mig-25 ‘Foxbat’, its principle ability of close-in-air combat was hijacked by long-range (Aim-7F Sparrow’s) missiles!

Its ironic that the U.S. military and NATO was so surprised and concerned about the appearance of the MiG-29 ‘Fulcrum’ equipped with its S-31E2 KOLS IRST in Finland in 1986. The fact that the USAF had known and employed IRST on its Convair F-102 Delta Dagger’s from 1956. And realistically, how long has it been since the USAF had access to the former East German MiG-29’s and seen and experienced firsthand how potent its IRST system is in dissimulated air combat, and yet the USAF are still only talking about introducing an IRST system 


Well hang on John21, why not consolidate cost (I know I know an oxymoron in the Pentagon's vocabulary  ::) ) and introduce the intended F-35's CRT and LCD displays into these upgrades of the F-15 and F-16, which could then be removed and recycled back into the actual F-35 if and when the F-35 is truly deemed operational and able to effectively replace the F-16 in USAF service!  :o

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Faithfulness and fortitude.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #36 on: July 08, 2015, 10:58:16 pm »
It is not a coincidence the US Navy is much bigger on IRSTs than the USAF - the sea is a very benign environment with minimal infrared clutter.

IRSTs have serious issues with clutter. They cannot directly measures range or doppler and it is very, very difficult for a computer to distinguish the optical flow of the background from target motion. Prior to the 1990s (western, Russian IRSTs got the capability even later) IRSTs could not even be used for look-down shoot-down engagements overland. The IRSTs that were available during the cold war would have been essentially useless in the low altitude combat that was anticipated over Europe.
Radar provides more reliable tracks in general and far more reliable tracks in the presence of ground clutter. It is also largely independent of atmospheric effects. IRSTS can achieve some very impressive tracking ranges under good conditions especially between two aircraft at altitude. But the probability of say a 100km cloud free line of sight at the same time there is little or no haze is... much less good.


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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #37 on: July 09, 2015, 05:34:39 am »
The fact that the USAF had known and employed IRST on its Convair F-102 Delta Dagger’s from 1956.

Funny thing is many US fighters have had IR sensors on them.  In addition to the Tomcat and F-102 there was the F-101, F-106, F-4, F-8, XF-108, YF-12, and probably others I'm missing. 
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #38 on: July 09, 2015, 08:51:23 am »
The fact that the USAF had known and employed IRST on its Convair F-102 Delta Dagger’s from 1956.

Funny thing is many US fighters have had IR sensors on them.  In addition to the Tomcat and F-102 there was the F-101, F-106, F-4, F-8, XF-108, YF-12, and probably others I'm missing.


I wonder how much functional use IRST got on those platforms? Except for the TCS on the F-14, it always seemed like RADAR was *the* sensor of choice.

Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #39 on: July 09, 2015, 09:01:14 am »
The fact that the USAF had known and employed IRST on its Convair F-102 Delta Dagger’s from 1956.

Funny thing is many US fighters have had IR sensors on them.  In addition to the Tomcat and F-102 there was the F-101, F-106, F-4, F-8, XF-108, YF-12, and probably others I'm missing.


I wonder how much functional use IRST got on those platforms? Except for the TCS on the F-14, it always seemed like RADAR was *the* sensor of choice.

That'd be a question for some of the older pilots over on F-16.net. 
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #40 on: July 09, 2015, 11:21:30 am »
I don't think they were used much. They were bedevilled by false alarm rates and (absent fusion) were one more thing for the pilot to monitor.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #41 on: July 10, 2015, 01:27:31 am »
Quote
I guess I just don't understand why, if Japan can do it right, why can't we?

I take the analogy that the USAF willingly took its eye off the ball, when it came to the F-15 in its service, when it got infatuated with the 'paper' capabilities and wet-dream about its F-22 and F-35! Poor old Eagle's, I guess if they could talk, they'd understand what its poor cuz - the A-10 Thunderbolt II has had to contend with all its life!  ::)

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #42 on: July 10, 2015, 02:56:37 am »
Quote
I guess I just don't understand why, if Japan can do it right, why can't we?

I take the analogy that the USAF willingly took its eye off the ball, when it came to the F-15 in its service, when it got infatuated with the 'paper' capabilities and wet-dream about its F-22 and F-35!

You do realize the design of the F-15 was wrapped up about 15 years before they even started talking about the F-22 right?
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Offline Grey Havoc

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #43 on: July 10, 2015, 03:04:11 am »
He's talking about the advanced upgrades (and at least one new variant) that were shelved in the expectation that the ATF would shortly be coming down the road.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #44 on: July 10, 2015, 03:54:29 am »

I seem to recall the F-14 IRST was used to provide visual confirmation of target friend/foe status and not for missile guidance.  As has been mentioned already, a passive imaging sensor can’t give you range unless you calculate parallax over a tangential distance relative to the target bearing.  You would not have enough information to select between a short or long range missile.


If you want an optical alternative to radar, it would have to be a LIDAR.  This would give you both bearing and range.  If I were trying to come up with a way to counter radar stealth, I would be experimenting with ways to shrink a kilowatt class beacon laser into a fighter nosecone plus an associated beam director.  The Airborne Laser (before it was killed), had a TIL (Track Illuminator Laser) designed to provide this function (coaxial to the main HEL laser and fired through the 1.5 meter beam director).


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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #45 on: July 10, 2015, 03:56:37 am »
Why not just a ranging laser built into the IRST?

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #46 on: July 10, 2015, 04:12:43 am »
He's talking about the advanced upgrades (and at least one new variant) that were shelved in the expectation that the ATF would shortly be coming down the road.

He's talking about IRSTs and for the F-15 that was killed in the crib just like it was with the F-22.  As for advanced F-15s, even the F-15 MANX didn't have an IRST.

http://www.flightglobal.com/pdfarchive/view/1996/1996%20-%203017.html?search=F-15 MANX

« Last Edit: July 10, 2015, 04:17:47 am by sferrin »
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Offline fredymac

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #47 on: July 10, 2015, 05:58:12 am »
Why not just a ranging laser built into the IRST?


The IRST is a large field of view sensor.  If your ranging laser is to compute range for anything within that FOV, it would have to be exceedingly powerful and then you would get range readings for everything within that FOV at the same time.  If you arrange the rangefinder beam to be restricted to a small FOV (say 1mrad), then you need to point it to match whatever is showing up in the image display of the IRST.  Now you need a gimbal system.

Offline Jeb

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #48 on: July 10, 2015, 09:06:00 am »

I seem to recall the F-14 IRST was used to provide visual confirmation of target friend/foe status and not for missile guidance. 


That would be the TCS (Tactical Camera System), not IRST.


http://www.anft.net/f-14/f14-detail-chinpods.htm

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #49 on: July 10, 2015, 09:35:06 am »
A minor point, but TCS = Television Camera Set, according to the documentation:
http://mil-spec.tpub.com/MIL-C/MIL-C-85437B/MIL-C-85437B00001.htm
 
 
 

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #50 on: July 10, 2015, 09:38:39 am »
A minor point, but TCS = Television Camera Set, according to the documentation:
http://mil-spec.tpub.com/MIL-C/MIL-C-85437B/MIL-C-85437B00001.htm


I am unaccustomed to such straightforward system naming practice.  :P  Blame it on the MATS site, not me!

Offline TomS

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #51 on: July 10, 2015, 09:55:30 am »
No worries.  There are at least two other versions of the name in use -- I've also seen Television Camera System and Telescopic Camera System. 
 
 

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #52 on: July 10, 2015, 12:12:28 pm »
Why not just a ranging laser built into the IRST?


The IRST is a large field of view sensor.  If your ranging laser is to compute range for anything within that FOV, it would have to be exceedingly powerful and then you would get range readings for everything within that FOV at the same time.  If you arrange the rangefinder beam to be restricted to a small FOV (say 1mrad), then you need to point it to match whatever is showing up in the image display of the IRST.  Now you need a gimbal system.

Not at all, as with LIDAR/LADAR. The laser beam can be steered with a tiny mirror or two. No need for anything gimballed.

example from quick google:_ http://www.spectrolab.com/pv/support/Low-cost_compact_MEMS_scanning_LADAR_system_for_robotic.pdf

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #53 on: July 10, 2015, 12:19:38 pm »
The IR on those earlier a/c (note that in the case of those three USAF aircraft they were all interceptors), IR was mostly detection and not really intended to supply a usable track, mostly just search and detect.  Plus, an image was not formed, just a detection.

I remember the story as the opposite.

The early jet fuselage-mounted IR sensors were used to cue the Sidewinder and Falcon missiles on the target for a quicker lock-on.
This became unnecessary once the AIM-9 seeker got better.

Offline Pioneer

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #54 on: July 10, 2015, 08:58:49 pm »
Quote
He's talking about IRSTs and for the F-15 that was killed in the crib just like it was with the F-22.  As for advanced F-15s, even the F-15 MANX didn't have an IRST.
Correct! Thanks Sferrin  ;)

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Offline fredymac

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #55 on: July 11, 2015, 04:57:23 am »
Why not just a ranging laser built into the IRST?


The IRST is a large field of view sensor.  If your ranging laser is to compute range for anything within that FOV, it would have to be exceedingly powerful and then you would get range readings for everything within that FOV at the same time.  If you arrange the rangefinder beam to be restricted to a small FOV (say 1mrad), then you need to point it to match whatever is showing up in the image display of the IRST.  Now you need a gimbal system.

Not at all, as with LIDAR/LADAR. The laser beam can be steered with a tiny mirror or two. No need for anything gimballed.

example from quick google:_ http://www.spectrolab.com/pv/support/Low-cost_compact_MEMS_scanning_LADAR_system_for_robotic.pdf


That tiny mirror equates to a big spot given any significant range.  That may not matter depending on your particular application.  For ranging to small objects over long range and where you don't want to convolve multiple targets, you need a big mirror to launch the beam.  A spatially resolved Lidar will be monostatic (laser is projected through the same telescope that feeds the receiver).  In a way, LIDAR is architecturally similar to HEL systems.  A typical bistatic arrangement where the laser is projected independent of the telescope usually injects the beam onto a flat mirror positioned just in front of the secondary mirror mount of the receiver telescope.  This keeps the beam coaxial vs range.  And speaking of range, aperture matters.  The bigger the aperture, the longer the range.  Signal returns drop as 1/range squared. 


Offline fightingirish

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #56 on: September 12, 2015, 12:05:46 am »
Quote
[...]Boeing will also use the AFA conference to market a new configuration of its F-15 fighter.


The new design features 16 air-to-air weapons, doubling the number currently available on the jet. To accommodate the additional weaponry, the new design alters the location of the fuel tanks.


Marketing a new configuration for the F-15 makes sense, as the line is expected to expire before the end of the decade. More details are expected to be available at the show, held Sept. 14-16.


Carter also visited the new design, which was on display at the facility.
Sources: http://www.airforcetimes.com/story/defense/policy-budget/industry/2015/09/09/boeing-to-provide-first-glimpse-of-t-x-at-conference/71979416/
http://foxtrotalpha.jalopnik.com/boeings-touts-new-16-air-to-air-missile-carrying-f-15-e-1730258333
« Last Edit: September 12, 2015, 10:19:36 am by fightingirish »
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Offline TomS

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #57 on: September 12, 2015, 04:29:52 am »
So this looks to be F-15 Advanced, which is basically the Saudi F-15SA adapted to the single-seat models. 

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #58 on: September 12, 2015, 11:31:38 am »
That would be good for Cruise Missile defense.


I am surprised they did not show the version with 20 AAMs.
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Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #59 on: September 12, 2015, 01:39:35 pm »
That would be good for Cruise Missile defense.

I'm on the fence there.  It's only going to be effective if the aircraft happens to be in the air (putting flight hours on many live rounds), and in the right spot when the cruise missiles are detected.  I'd think something like SM-6 with AWACS/aerostats would be able to cover a larger area for less money.  Even better/cheaper would be something like SLAMRAAM-ER with a tandem booster (think skinny Terrier/RIM-67 configuration) with CEC.
« Last Edit: September 12, 2015, 01:47:17 pm by sferrin »
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Offline bobbymike

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #60 on: September 12, 2015, 01:50:20 pm »
Quote
[...]Boeing will also use the AFA conference to market a new configuration of its F-15 fighter.


The new design features 16 air-to-air weapons, doubling the number currently available on the jet. To accommodate the additional weaponry, the new design alters the location of the fuel tanks.


Marketing a new configuration for the F-15 makes sense, as the line is expected to expire before the end of the decade. More details are expected to be available at the show, held Sept. 14-16.


Carter also visited the new design, which was on display at the facility.
Sources: http://www.airforcetimes.com/story/defense/policy-budget/industry/2015/09/09/boeing-to-provide-first-glimpse-of-t-x-at-conference/71979416/
http://foxtrotalpha.jalopnik.com/boeings-touts-new-16-air-to-air-missile-carrying-f-15-e-1730258333
About 100 F-15s with 16 AMRAAMs each could take on the entire Iranian air force  :o
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #61 on: September 12, 2015, 02:43:52 pm »
Combining these huge missile loads with the new IRST/datalink pods could make the F-15 interesting as a sort of Linebacker or Missileer, lobbing missiles from long range to give the close-in F-22s a large "virtual magazine" capacity.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #62 on: September 12, 2015, 11:42:34 pm »

Offline Triton

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #63 on: September 15, 2015, 07:00:56 pm »
"Boeing doubles F-15C missile load in '2040C' Eagle upgrade"
15 September, 2015 BY: James Drew Washington DC

Source:
https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/boeing-doubles-f-15c-missile-load-in-2040c-eagle-u-416766/

Quote
Boeing has unveiled an up-gunned version of its supersonic F-15C air superiority jet designed to keep the aging fleet operationally relevant through 2040.

Called 2040C, the upgrade package includes “quad pack” munitions racks designed to double the aircraft’s air-to-air missile payload to 16 and conformal fuel tanks for extended-range flights.

For communications, Boeing is naturally offering “Talon HATE” – the air force’s programme of record for connecting the F-15 with Lockheed Martin’s F-22 Raptor.

In terms of survivability, Boeing’s package includes Raytheon’s APG-63(v)3 active synthetically scanned array (AESA) radar and a long-range infrared search and track (IRST) sensor for “first sight, first shot, first kill” air-to-air combat.

2040C continues delivery of the Northrop Grumman’s Eagle Passive/Active Warning Survivability System (EPAWSS) systems – a programme designed to equip the fourth-generation F-15 with the latest electronic warfare capabilities.

Boeing vice president of F-15 programs Mike Gibbons says the 2040C concept is an evolution of the Silent Eagle proposed to South Korea, with some low-observable improvements but mostly a focus on the latest air capabilities and lethality.

 “F-15s and F-22s in the fight together in the future out there in the 2030s; the assessment and analysis we’ve done points to this as a nice solution set for the air force,” he said at an Air Force Association conference in Washington. “The air force has funded some of these and we’re in discussions about the others, but many are funded programmes of record.”

“Doubling the number of missiles on the jet is not something that’s a current programme of record, but it is something we know is of interest to the air force.”

Gibbons says instead of carrying weapons internally to reduce the Eagle’s radar cross section, the “evolving threat” – Russia and China’s fielding of advanced fighter jets – favours more weapons, according to Boeing.

The Pentagon capped F-22 production at 195, forcing the air force to keep the F-15C in service far longer than planned, and current operating concepts team the two jets for a high-low mix.

Boeing sees a market for more than 200 active-duty and air national guard F-15C upgrades, and the new payloads could be delivered as part of a future service-life-extension programme (SLEP).

Gibbons says some USAF F-15Cs have more than 20,000h of flight time remaining on the airframe, whereas other are in the low teens and would require new wings and vertical tales.

Speaking at a media roundtable 15 September, Air Combat Command commander Gen Hawk Carlisle said the F-15C will require a life-extension programme in the near future and the added capabilities being offered by Boeing will be considered as part of that.

The upgrade would be a “significant bill,” but he says the planning for that needs to start now in the absence of more F-22s. Boeing is also targeting international F-15C operators including Japan, Israel and Saudi Arabia.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2015, 07:07:07 pm by Triton »

Offline Triton

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #64 on: September 15, 2015, 07:05:31 pm »
"Boeing Positions F-15 as F-22 Supplement"
by Aaron Mehta 2:51 p.m. EDT September 15, 2015

Source:
http://www.defensenews.com/story/defense/show-daily/afa/2015/09/15/boeing-positions-f-15-as-f-22-supplement/72316414/

Quote
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. — In an effort to extend its F-15 business, Boeing unveiled a new upgrade package for the F-15C design — one specifically targeting an air superiority gap left from the decision to cut production on the F-22.

The new design, part of an effort dubbed "F-15 C2040" by the company, would double the number of air-to-air weapons carried by the F-15C from eight to 16 while adding conformal fuel tanks for enhanced distance.

It would also feature updated electronics, including a long-range Infra-Red Search and Track (IRST) sensor and the already planned Eagle Passive/Active Warning Survivability System (EPAWSS). It would also feature an updated AESA radar.

The upgrades being proposed are not one large package. Rather, the company is offering a menu of options, one which can be targeted both at the 250 air dominance F-15s in the US inventory and the hundreds used by international customers abroad.

Mike Gibbons, F-15 program manager for Boeing, said the idea of this particular configuration came from a realization that "there is a real challenge the Air Force faces with air superiority."

Boeing's marketing theory goes something like this. The F-22 was supposed to be the air superiority backbone of the Air Force for years to come, working hand in hand with the F-35 to provide a high-end air capability. But then the F-22 program was cancelled well short of projected totals.

Gen. Mark Welsh, Air Force chief of staff, acknowledged the challenge caused by the curtailed F-22 fleet in an exclusive interview with Defense News.

The F-35, Welsh said, "was never designed to be the next dog fighting machine. It was designed to be the multipurpose, data-integration platform that could do all kinds of things in the air-to-ground arena including dismantle enemy, integrated, air defenses. It had an air-to-air capability, but it was not intended to be an air-superiority fighter. That was the F-22."

For Boeing, the argument then is that an upgraded F-15C can help bridge the gap left by the F-22 cutback, at least until the next-generation air dominance program comes online in large numbers — around 2040.

Which isn't to say upgraded F-15s will replace the F-22. Indeed, Boeing is expressly positioning the system as an integrated capability with the F-22, thanks to its Talon HATE program.

Speaking to reporters last week in St. Louis, Boeing executives gave a first glance at the pod, which is on contract with the Air Force for 4 EMD pods. The pod is designed to allow easy data transfer between F-22 and F-15, built around the Boeing "Phantom Fusion" computer system.

Gibbons confirmed the Talon HATE pod is part of the upgrade package being discussed. He added that while the pod comes with an IRST capability, it is not the long-range IRST being discussed for the 2040C package.

Backlog orders on the F-15 line run out in 2019. While denying that means the end of the F-15 line in St. Louis, Gibbons did acknowledge it puts pressure on the Air Force to decide whether it wants these upgrades "in the next few" budget cycles.

Gibbons also said the work is largely non-evasive, with the exception of EPAWSS — which is already planned to be installed across the fleet in the early 2020s. That would provide an ideal window to do other depot work, he noted.

Speaking to reporters later in the day, Gen. Hawk Carlisle, the head of Air Combat Command, acknowledged that a capability upgrade would be nice, but that a service life extension program, or SLEP, is more important.

"When we look at the stress tests we've done on the f15c and were doing on the f15 and f16 there are issues were gonna have to do for service life extension with respect to the structural integrity of the airplane, so were working on those and what were gonna have to do in the future,

"If I could find a way with resources, I would do everything I could when we put those airplanes in to do a service life extension program and fix the structural issues, I would do everything in my power to try to do capabilities upgrade at the same time," he said. "I will try to do as much of that as I can find the resources."

As to how much a SLEP program would cost, Carlisle said the analysis is underway but "we know it's a pretty significant bill in the billions of dollars."
« Last Edit: September 15, 2015, 07:42:01 pm by Triton »

Offline Dragon029

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #65 on: September 16, 2015, 01:25:27 am »
I wonder if those quad rails could be transplanted to other platforms; it'd be impressive to see Super Hornets and F-35s fitted with them on their 2000lb+ hardpoints.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #66 on: September 16, 2015, 04:47:21 am »
I'm wondering if the intent is mainly to serve as flying magazines for the F-22s.  Unless they come up with something with more range than an AIM-120D I can't see more missiles making the F-15 any more survivable against something like a J-20 or T-50 as it's not the quantity of missiles that puts it at a disadvantage.
« Last Edit: September 16, 2015, 06:02:58 am by sferrin »
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Offline Jeb

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #67 on: September 16, 2015, 10:43:50 am »
Here's what I think is interesting. Last year, or two years ago, whenever, Boeing pushed out the Silent Eagle program, which stealthed up the F-15 at the expense of missile carriage. I think a Silent Eagle in full LO configuration carried four internal AIM-120Cs? And buyers yawned.


Now Boeing's done a total 180 on the idea of what an advanced F-15 would be and doubled (or more) the missile load, which screams "screw stealth, more warshots!" but also acquiesces[/size] to the F-35 as the de facto standard for stealth airpower going forward.
[/size]
[/size]I guess if you can't be Snake Eyes, might as well be Roadblock. ;D

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #68 on: September 16, 2015, 11:21:07 am »
sferrin - there was some talk of integrating F-15's with F-22s, using F-22s as forward recon then passing data back to F-15s. The IRST pod was supposed to be integral with that.

It looks like Boeing is taking the logical conclusion of that program, making the ultimate missile truck to support F-22s.

But, I agree with you that AIM-120D won't have enough range to make this really viable. It'd make much more sense with a Meteor class AAM or one of those absurdly long range Russian ones.

Offline Triton

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #69 on: September 16, 2015, 12:40:11 pm »
I'm wondering if the intent is mainly to serve as flying magazines for the F-22s.  Unless they come up with something with more range than an AIM-120D I can't see more missiles making the F-15 any more survivable against something like a J-20 or T-50 as it's not the quantity of missiles that puts it at a disadvantage.

I understand that Boeing Phantom Works and Raytheon are still working on the DARPA Triple Target Terminator (T3) program.

"Boeing Phantom Works May Unveil New Projects"
by Bill Sweetman
Jun 15, 2015

Source:
http://aviationweek.com/paris-air-show-2015/boeing-phantom-works-may-unveil-new-projects

Quote
[Boeing Phantom Works President Darryl] Davis disclosed that the Phantoms had conducted four flight tests under the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's Triple Target Terminator (T3) program. The test vehicles, about the size of an AIM-120 Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile, flew "faster and farther" than an Amraam, Davis said, but he did not provide any other details.

We'll see whether this is deployed as the replacement to the AIM-120 AMRAAM and AGM-88 HARM like the cancelled Next Generation Missile (NGM).

Triple Target Terminator (T3) topic:
http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,11188.0.html


« Last Edit: September 16, 2015, 12:42:21 pm by Triton »

Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #70 on: September 16, 2015, 01:04:16 pm »
sferrin - there was some talk of integrating F-15's with F-22s, using F-22s as forward recon then passing data back to F-15s. The IRST pod was supposed to be integral with that.

It looks like Boeing is taking the logical conclusion of that program, making the ultimate missile truck to support F-22s.

But, I agree with you that AIM-120D won't have enough range to make this really viable. It'd make much more sense with a Meteor class AAM or one of those absurdly long range Russian ones.

"DARPA Hard"  It ain't what it use to be.

Offline Triton

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #71 on: September 16, 2015, 01:14:36 pm »
sferrin - there was some talk of integrating F-15's with F-22s, using F-22s as forward recon then passing data back to F-15s. The IRST pod was supposed to be integral with that.

It looks like Boeing is taking the logical conclusion of that program, making the ultimate missile truck to support F-22s.

But, I agree with you that AIM-120D won't have enough range to make this really viable. It'd make much more sense with a Meteor class AAM or one of those absurdly long range Russian ones.



AIM-152 AAAM was cancelled in 1992.

Image of the Hughes-Raytheon design.

Source:
http://www.designation-systems.net/dusrm/m-152.html

Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #72 on: September 16, 2015, 01:16:57 pm »
Unfortunately.  It would have been perfect for today.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #73 on: September 16, 2015, 01:26:57 pm »
Raytheon could dust off FRAAM (Future Medium Range Air to Air Missile), a modified ramjet powered version of the Hughes (now Raytheon) AIM-120 AMRAAM.


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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #74 on: September 16, 2015, 01:32:40 pm »
Raytheon could dust off FRAAM (Future Medium Range Air to Air Missile), a modified ramjet powered version of the Hughes (now Raytheon) AIM-120 AMRAAM.

True, but that GD/Westinghouse design was even more compact.  With a lofting trajectory, and multiple pulse motors I wouldn't be surprised if it out could out distance Meteor.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #75 on: September 16, 2015, 01:41:24 pm »
Model of Raytheon-Aerojet AIM-120 VFDR (Variable Flow Ducted Rocket)
« Last Edit: September 16, 2015, 02:41:50 pm by Triton »

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #76 on: September 16, 2015, 01:44:35 pm »
I think I've posted that two or three times here myself.  ;D
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #77 on: September 16, 2015, 01:59:23 pm »
The GD version was the version I thought would hold the most promise.


Put a 1/2 sized booster on the 1st stage and 2-3 could fit in the place of each F-22 Sidewinder and 6-8 full size ones could fit in each F-22 internal bay.


UAVs, IFR, & ISR assets could carry carry just the 1st stage as a self-defense measure.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #78 on: September 16, 2015, 02:00:41 pm »
Why would Raytheon need to dust off anything when they already tested the T3 for DARPA? Why look back?
Old radar types never die; they just phased array - Unknown

Offline Triton

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #79 on: September 16, 2015, 02:39:10 pm »
Why would Raytheon need to dust off anything when they already tested the T3 for DARPA? Why look back?

You wrote on f-16.net that the program is completed and a final test report was delivered. You further wrote:

Quote
The program is jointly funded with, and will transition to the Air Force.

The DARPA phase is over and they accomplished in 2013 what they set out to do i.e. test out the Raytheon VFDR missile, and the Boeing dual pulse missile. Now its up to the USAF to spin this into either a further testing program or use it to come up with requirements. I think they'll sit on it for a while, because you really have a dual-need to not only fund a clean sheet AMRAAM replacement, but also a SACM class missile.

Source:
http://www.f-16.net/forum/viewtopic.php?p=289951#p289951


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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #80 on: September 16, 2015, 04:34:13 pm »
Yes and if the plan is to considerably upgrade the BVR capability through a new weapon then you already have a program that has demonstrated what is possible given current technology. All you need to do is roll that into a program and spend money to get this capability by 2025. There is no indication that the Raytheon weapon was the enhanced AMRAAM derivative that had been presented earlier. If one looks at the capability requirement from the T-3 it would make sense to completely replace some of the systems to get that dual use capability and If i were to guess I would guess that the missile plan for raytheon with that program was significantly different from the AMRAAM in both seeker technology, and propulsion technology. Lockheed has a multi-pulse missile proposal as well since it did not win contract awards for the T-3. I also doubt that Raytheon would be rigid when it comes to the propulsion concept, they did consider a dual pulse motor as well for the AMRAAM at one point of time. It would all come down to the range and other performance requirements for a future missile that will largely drive the choices in propulsion.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/usaf-seeks-interim-champ-longer-range-air-to-air-416828/
« Last Edit: September 16, 2015, 04:39:17 pm by bring_it_on »
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Offline DrRansom

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #81 on: September 17, 2015, 01:30:57 pm »
Bring-it-on linked the article I was about to post, but here are two highlights

On topic:
Quote
In terms of air superiority weapons, Carlisle says the development of next-generation air-to-air missiles is also “an exceptionally high priority”.

Raytheon’s AMRAAM is the current go-to Western weapon for beyond-visual-range air combat, but new long-range missiles being fielded by Russia and China are a significant concern to the Pentagon.

Carlisle says outmatching the Chinese PL-15 air-to-air missile in particular is an “exceedingly high priority”.

“The PL-15 and the range of that missile, we’ve got to be able to out-stick that missile,” he says.

LowObservable will find this funny, but it looks like the USAF is going the way of Europe and the Rafale. USAF is now investing in advanced IRSTs and is looking at a long-range missile program. This mirrors European investments into IRST a decade ago and the Meteor missile. Amusing observation here.


*************************************

Off-topic
Quote
“[Global Strike commander Gen Robin Rand] and I are talking about how to transition some number, an interim capability that’s on the current [CALCM] system and then how do we move to even an improved capability into the next generation air-to-surface cruise missiles we’re producing today.”


- Sounds like CHAMP is /about/ to be deployable, albeit in small numbers


Offline bobbymike

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #82 on: September 17, 2015, 03:50:56 pm »
What would be the maximum range of a AIM-120D launched at 50,000 feet at Mach 2 (or whatever the highest speed they could be launched at) from an F-15?
« Last Edit: September 18, 2015, 12:37:22 am by bobbymike »
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Offline Triton

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #83 on: September 17, 2015, 09:43:47 pm »
"F-15 SLEP Coming"
—John A. Tirpak9/16/2015

Source:
http://www.airforcemag.com/DRArchive/Pages/2015/September%202015/September%2016%202015/F-15-SLEP-Coming.aspx

Quote
The F-15C and E fleets will need a Service Life Extension Program that will cost “billions,” Air Combat Command chief Gen. Hawk Carlisle told reporters at ASC​15. “If you look at the stress tests we’re doing on the F-15C and the F-16 and F-15E, there are issues” requiring attention, Carlisle said. Wing spars and skins, and longerons are just some of the things that have to be replaced, he said, adding that if he “could find a way” to afford some capability upgrades, he would add them to the list of things installed when the jets are down for refurbishment. These include radars, passive detection systems, link architecture, radios, communications, and navigation equipment, he said. While the F-15Es fly a different mission than the C models, they both endure “a lot of weight on the wings” and so will need similar attention. “Those airplanes are going to be in the inventory for a long time to come,” he said, and “we have to get them as capable as we can.” The SLEP isn’t something that will happen “in the next one or two years” because stress data is still being collected, but “we have to start building (that) into the program.”


Offline Triton

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #84 on: September 18, 2015, 12:06:05 pm »
YMMV, but I thought that this observation was interesting concerning US military use of IRST.

"Airborne IRST properties and performance"
Posted by picard578 on June 16, 2015

Source:
https://defenseissues.wordpress.com/2015/06/16/airborne-irst-properties-and-performance/comment-page-1/

Quote
While US Department of Defense has a very long history of being “late to the party” when it comes to introducing simple, yet effective (even transformative) systems*, US military is currently taking baby steps to rectifying its lag in development and application of airborne IR sensors. This can be clearly seen from the F-35s inbuilt IRST (though that decision was only made on insistence of US Navy, which was also the first service to introduce the Legion pod, and generally has better understanding of passive IR systems than USAF**), and procurement of IR pods for the F-15C, F-16 and F-18 fleets. Legion pod procured is capable of generating weapons track. US Navy is also the service that initiated development of AIM-9X Block III, which is basically a BVR missile, with a range of 42 km.

One of reasons why United States have not put funds into developing IRST, and are even now using almost exclusively systems geared for air-to-ground performance that happen to have air-to-air option, is that IRST was seen as a threat to the AWACS program, and later on also to stealth fighters. Both of these were high-budget programs that USAF could not allow to disappear. With average price of 1 million USD per unit, it would take only 3,2 billion USD to equip the entire US inventory of tactical aircraft with modern IRST systems. Allowing it to threaten the multi-billion AWACS or stealth aircraft programmes was simply unacceptable.*** For this reason, USAF is still acting as if IR sensors have not advanced past Vietnam-era sensors with their range, weather and targeting limitations. Same reason is also likely behind the decision to retire the IRST-equipped F-14 just before the F-22 started entering service (F-14s were retired in mid-2006, while the F-22 started entering service in 2007).

This might be changing as USAF agressors are starting to use IR sensors during Red Flag exercises.

* Examples are assault rifles, carrier catapults, IR sensors, helmet mounted sights, HOBS IR missiles.

** US Navy was also the first service to deploy IR Sidewinder missile in 1956. US Air Force deployed a Falcon missile the same year, but it had both IR and RF variant, and unlike Sidewinder, it was primarily intended for bomber self-defense and not for usage on fighters. Even though it was later deployed on fighter aircraft as well, USN Sidewinder proved superior and became preeminent US IR air-to-air missile.

*** E-3 Sentry program cost is 26,73 billion USD, F-22 program cost is 79,48 billion USD and F-35 program cost is estimated at 323 billion USD, though it is likely to be higher.

Offline bobbymike

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #85 on: September 18, 2015, 03:15:54 pm »
YMMV, but I thought that this observation was interesting concerning US military use of IRST.

"Airborne IRST properties and performance"
Posted by picard578 on June 16, 2015

Source:
https://defenseissues.wordpress.com/2015/06/16/airborne-irst-properties-and-performance/comment-page-1/

Quote
While US Department of Defense has a very long history of being “late to the party” when it comes to introducing simple, yet effective (even transformative) systems*, US military is currently taking baby steps to rectifying its lag in development and application of airborne IR sensors. This can be clearly seen from the F-35s inbuilt IRST (though that decision was only made on insistence of US Navy, which was also the first service to introduce the Legion pod, and generally has better understanding of passive IR systems than USAF**), and procurement of IR pods for the F-15C, F-16 and F-18 fleets. Legion pod procured is capable of generating weapons track. US Navy is also the service that initiated development of AIM-9X Block III, which is basically a BVR missile, with a range of 42 km.

One of reasons why United States have not put funds into developing IRST, and are even now using almost exclusively systems geared for air-to-ground performance that happen to have air-to-air option, is that IRST was seen as a threat to the AWACS program, and later on also to stealth fighters. Both of these were high-budget programs that USAF could not allow to disappear. With average price of 1 million USD per unit, it would take only 3,2 billion USD to equip the entire US inventory of tactical aircraft with modern IRST systems. Allowing it to threaten the multi-billion AWACS or stealth aircraft programmes was simply unacceptable.*** For this reason, USAF is still acting as if IR sensors have not advanced past Vietnam-era sensors with their range, weather and targeting limitations. Same reason is also likely behind the decision to retire the IRST-equipped F-14 just before the F-22 started entering service (F-14s were retired in mid-2006, while the F-22 started entering service in 2007).

This might be changing as USAF agressors are starting to use IR sensors during Red Flag exercises.

* Examples are assault rifles, carrier catapults, IR sensors, helmet mounted sights, HOBS IR missiles.

** US Navy was also the first service to deploy IR Sidewinder missile in 1956. US Air Force deployed a Falcon missile the same year, but it had both IR and RF variant, and unlike Sidewinder, it was primarily intended for bomber self-defense and not for usage on fighters. Even though it was later deployed on fighter aircraft as well, USN Sidewinder proved superior and became preeminent US IR air-to-air missile.

*** E-3 Sentry program cost is 26,73 billion USD, F-22 program cost is 79,48 billion USD and F-35 program cost is estimated at 323 billion USD, though it is likely to be higher.
Has there not been Typhoons, MiGs and Rafael's at Red Flag for years? 
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #86 on: September 18, 2015, 03:45:37 pm »
Bring-it-on linked the article I was about to post, but here are two highlights

On topic:
Quote
In terms of air superiority weapons, Carlisle says the development of next-generation air-to-air missiles is also “an exceptionally high priority”.

Raytheon’s AMRAAM is the current go-to Western weapon for beyond-visual-range air combat, but new long-range missiles being fielded by Russia and China are a significant concern to the Pentagon.

Carlisle says outmatching the Chinese PL-15 air-to-air missile in particular is an “exceedingly high priority”.

“The PL-15 and the range of that missile, we’ve got to be able to out-stick that missile,” he says.

LowObservable will find this funny, but it looks like the USAF is going the way of Europe and the Rafale. USAF is now investing in advanced IRSTs and is looking at a long-range missile program. This mirrors European investments into IRST a decade ago and the Meteor missile. Amusing observation here.


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Quote
“[Global Strike commander Gen Robin Rand] and I are talking about how to transition some number, an interim capability that’s on the current [CALCM] system and then how do we move to even an improved capability into the next generation air-to-surface cruise missiles we’re producing today.”


- Sounds like CHAMP is /about/ to be deployable, albeit in small numbers

I think the reference was to this -

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Offline Triton

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #87 on: September 18, 2015, 09:04:45 pm »
"Fighter Gap Forces Questions On USAF F-15C Plans"
Sep 17, 2015 Amy Butler | Aviation Week & Space Technology

Source:
http://aviationweek.com/defense/fighter-gap-forces-questions-usaf-f-15c-plans

Quote
The lack of an official retirement date for the U.S. Air Force’s F-15C is perhaps the strongest indication of a bright future for the platform.

This is not lost on the fighter’s manufacturer, Boeing, which is recasting its efforts to offer an upgrade plan for the air superiority aircraft after its earlier effort, dubbed the Silent Eagle, flopped.

Most Air Force platforms have a retirement date on the books, even if just for planning. But the F-15C is in a peculiar position. It was to be replaced by a fleet of F-22s, but high costs prompted then-Defense Secretary Robert Gates to end production for the stealthy, twin-engine aircraft in 2009 with only 187 jets produced. This is far fewer than the 350 hoped for. So the F-15C fleet is likely to stay on far longer than expected, at least until an F-22follow-on—dubbed the Next-Generation Air Dominance aircraft—is designed and fielded.

“They will not be producing another air superiority jet until the 2030s, and they will not be out there in sufficient numbers . . . until 2040 or beyond,” says Mike Gibbons, Boeing’s F-15 vice president

Air Force officials will not go so far as to call it a “gap” in capability, but there clearly is a shortfall. This is exemplified by the shift in plans for the critical air-to-air mission. A decade ago, the service projected a “high-low” mix of F-22s handling all of the air superiority tasks, with the F-35 relegated to a multirole mission of suppression/destruction of enemy air defenses and close air support roles. The F-35 was equipped for limited air-to-air engagement, including for self protection, but not as a front-line air superiority fighter.

Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh says that now, however, the limited number of F-22s has pushed the service to look at a long-range plan for the F-15C as well as pressing the F-35 into that role. The F-35 “is not intended to be an air superiority fighter. That was not how it was designed,” he told reporters during a Sept. 15 press conference at the annual Air Force Association Air and Space Conference. “When the F-22 buy was curtailed . . . we [decided we] have to supplement it with something. Near-term it is going to be the F-15C . . . and then as the F-35 comes on board it is capable of supplementing the F-22, but then it will not be doing its primary job.”

Gen. Herbert Carlisle, who heads Air Combat Command, acknowledges the conundrum. The F-15C will require costly upgrades to stay relevant in the fight. And the service is already stretched for resources. Durability testing thus far—with more to come—suggests new longerons, wing spars and wings could be required on at least some of the F-15Cs. This will result in a “pretty significant bill,” he told reporters at the conference, adding it will total billions of dollars.

Ideally, the Air Force would be able to purchase a new platform for a new “low” end to its earlier high-low concept, Welsh says. Such an aircraft would operate in permissive airspace, conducting a variety of missions, possibly including air-to-air and air-to-ground sorties. But, funding is lacking to support this, he notes.

As the Air Force mulls its requirements, Boeing is crafting a menu of upgrades for the F-15C fleet to both keep it safe to fly and relevant in a changing threat environment. The initiative, dubbed “F-15 2040C” is a follow-on to the company’s unsuccessful push to sell options under the “Silent Eagle” effort. The latter, unveiled in 2009, was focused on reducing the F-15’s radar cross section, with a prominent feature being conformal fuel tanks (CFT) capable of carrying weapons internally, along with a canted tail option and coatings focused on reducing its radar signature. While Boeing officials say Silent Eagle was aimed at Israel and South Korea, it was clearly an option for the U.S. Air Force as well. Eventually, all three passed on the concept.

The new emphasis with 2040C is a shift from the Silent Eagle’s focus on adding as much stealthiness to the F-15 as possible. Instead, the new initiative maximizes the aircraft’s characteristically heavy weapons loadout with a variety of options. “We definitely don’t want to give up the range we get with the CFT and even if we could give up the reach, we didn’t want to limit ourselves to the number of weapons we can carry internally,” Gibbons says.

This puts the F-15 in more of a support role. While F-22s would be expected to penetrate air defenses, the operational concept would be for them to then relay data to the F-15s—operating at a safe distance—to deploy a large number of weapons for kills. This depends on the F-15’s load increasing and on much-needed new communications, also part of the 2040C offering.

One of the 2040C loadout options would place four external air-to-air missiles on each of the CFTs. That doubles the loadout from the current eight to 16. Another option—available only if the Air Force opts to add fly-by-wire controls to the aircraft—would add more air-to-air missiles on the outboard stations as well. These options involve a new CFT design, though it would follow the existing CFT outer mold line, Gibbons says. The service does employ CFTs for the F-15E Strike Eagle fleet, but they are rarely used for the air superiority variant.

The goal of 16 air-to-air missiles is at the “upper end” of the need, based on a variety of scenarios being examined by the Air Force, Gibbons says. “It is very easy to envision that with our forces around the world enemy threats can get an advantage . . . because they have aircraft on station and aircraft at bases [close by]. It is just a matter of numbers. If you are anywhere near their country, they can launch a lot of jets pretty quickly.”

Communications with the F-22 also are essential to support this operational concept. The Air Force is continuing to struggle with crafting a plan for so-called 5th-to-4th communications, named to reflect the pathways needed from fifth-generation F-22s to fourth-generation legacy platforms, like the F-15C/D.

Boeing’s Talon Hate pod is a pathfinder of sorts for this capability. Flight testing is slated to begin in the fall on the pod, but only a few are being procured, to address an urgent need. The service has yet to articulate a follow-on plan for 5th-to-4th communications for the entire fleet. The issue is that the F-22 is unable to covertly send and receive data with F-15Cs. This is significant, because increasingly sophisticated air defenses are pushing F-15s farther away from harm where the F-22s will be operating. The theory is F-22s, which carry few weapons, would designate targets and F-15s would launch missiles. Equipped with a long-range infrared search and track (IRST), F-15s could also relay targeting data forward to F-22s.

Another item on the 2040C menu is a long-range IRST sensor. This is part of the Talon Hate project. It is needed for the F-15 to be able to detect aircraft employing radar-evading technologies at long ranges. Gibbons says advances in survivability—both passive and active—also are included in the options.

These capabilities would be added to already planned work on outfitting the F-15C fleet with upgraded AN/APG-63 advanced active electronically scanned array radars. Boeing also is developing the Eagle Passive/Active Warning and Survivability System (Epawss), a $7.6 billion project. It is replacing the 1970s- technology Tactical Electronic Warfare System used today. 

Gibbons says an announcement on the Epawss supplier is expected soon, after which a roughly one-year technology maturation phase will begin. Development would then take about five years, including flight testing, he says. Ultimately, Epawss should be ready for fielding in the early-to-mid 2020s. This would be a target time to implement desired 2040C modifications as well, he says.

In parallel, Boeing is working on extended fatigue-life testing on the aircraft to support additional service life. The C fleet is certified to 9,000 hr., says Robert Zwitch, F-15 deputy system program manager for the Air Force’s F-15 division in the Life Cycle Management Center.

The Air Force has directed Boeing to conduct additional fatigue tests on two jets—one to 33,000 hr. and another to 13,500 hr. For low-hour aircraft, inspection could be enough to get to 2040. However, those more heavily used could require new structures such as vertical tails or wings. In some cases, Boeing may offer to provide entire new platforms, with mission systems (radar, avionics, and pods) reused from aging models. The high-life aircraft could reach as many as 20,000 hr. of flight by 2040.

The Air Force operates 213 F-15Cs.

Offline Colonial-Marine

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #88 on: September 19, 2015, 02:10:39 am »
We're down to just 213 F-15C/Ds? Wasn't that number quite a lot higher just a few years ago?
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #89 on: September 19, 2015, 02:37:25 am »
We're down to just 213 F-15C/Ds? Wasn't that number quite a lot higher just a few years ago?
I don't know 'recent' numbers but since the end of the Cold War

"Although, he [Gen. Carlisle] admits the air force has a serious capacity problem, having slimmed down from 188 fighter squadrons at the end of the Cold War to just 49 squadrons in the current five-year plan.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #90 on: September 19, 2015, 06:53:31 am »
We're down to just 213 F-15C/Ds? Wasn't that number quite a lot higher just a few years ago?

According the this year's USAF almanac the 213 is for Cs only.  There are an additional 36 Ds and 220 Es.  There are a lot of Eagles in the Bone Yard.  :(
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #91 on: September 19, 2015, 11:31:17 am »
We're down to just 213 F-15C/Ds? Wasn't that number quite a lot higher just a few years ago?

According the this year's USAF almanac the 213 is for Cs only.  There are an additional 36 Ds and 220 Es.  There are a lot of Eagles in the Bone Yard.  :(
We could have been up to between 300 and 350 F-22s by now*

* I will eventually stop posting this and just maintain the small black ribbon I wear over the cancellation.  ;)
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Offline Triton

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #92 on: September 19, 2015, 11:42:14 am »
The article I posted says that the Air Force operates 213 F-15Cs, it does not mention the number of F-15Ds.
« Last Edit: September 19, 2015, 02:05:49 pm by Triton »

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #93 on: September 19, 2015, 02:47:24 pm »
Eagle Passive/Active Warning Survivability System (EPAWSS) datasheet:
http://www.northropgrumman.com/Capabilities/EPAWSS/Documents/northrop_grumman_epawss.pdf

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #94 on: September 19, 2015, 03:02:46 pm »
Boeing has to make a down select, so BaE is also a potential supplier.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #95 on: September 20, 2015, 08:32:13 am »
BAE already has DEWS on Korean and Saudi F-15s. NG says its kit will be less expensive to retrofit.


With the Talon Hate pod idea, combining "5th-to 4th" with IRST, big AESA, lots of missiles and an effective jammer, the idea seems as much a complement to the JSF as to F-15.







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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #96 on: September 20, 2015, 02:06:44 pm »
I understand that Northrop Grumman has licensed Selex ES IRST technology for OpenPod.

What should we make of Selex ES claims for the capability of their SKYWARD-G pod and the usefulness of IRST on the "2040C"?

Quote
The IRST is capable of detecting low-RCS targets at distances compatible with a beyond-visual-range missile launch, Mason says. “We have seen them,” he responds when asked if Selex IRSTs have tracked low-RCS targets. “We are looking at very small delta-Ts [temperature differences between the target and the background]. Some infrared absorbent paints cause more friction than standard surfaces, and that causes kinetic heating that the IRST will pick up.” Skyward-G does not depend on a supersonic target—“skin heating at 300-400 knots is significant”—and detects heat radiating through the aircraft's skin from the engine, as well as skin friction and the exhaust plume.

The IRST uses a long-wave focal plane array sensor (a dual-band system, adding mid-wave capability, is a potential upgrade) with three fields of view. In its long-range search mode, the system is an IR telescope with a fast-moving scanning mirror (located in a transparent dome in front of the windshield) and “step-scans” through its search sector. It also has a single-target track mode, and in wide-field mode it provides a night-vision image on the head-up display. As a passive system, IRST does not have inherent range data, but it can perform “kinetic ranging”—the aircraft performs a weaving maneuver and the range is determined by the change in azimuth angle to the target—or the IRSTs on two aircraft can triangulate the target over the TAU-Link.

IRST hardware—the optics, detector and processor—has been improved since the development of Pirate started, but (according to Mason and other industry sources) the most important change has been the development of algorithms, based on operational experience and the analysis of real-world imagery, that look at IR signatures in detail, including variations of color and brightness within the target, in order to filter out false alarms caused by everything from birds to barbecue grills.

The IRST can give the radar a very accurate azimuth and elevation to the target, which allows it to focus its energy and increase the probability of achieving detection and track on a low-RCS target, Mason says. The AESA provides virtually instantaneous beam-steering within its ±70-deg. scan, but the repositioner is slower. One concept to be demonstrated will be the use of two Gripen radars and the TAU-Link to provide a wide-angle picture to both targets.

Source:
http://aviationweek.com/awin/gripen-sensors-claim-counter-stealth-performance

Offline Triton

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #97 on: September 20, 2015, 02:42:12 pm »
"Northrop unveils OpenPod as USAF seeks F-15 IRST"
02 June, 2015 BY: James Drew Washington DC

Source:
https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/northrop-unveils-openpod-as-usaf-seeks-f-15-irst-413022/

Quote
Northrop Grumman has responded to US Air Force interest in an infrared search and track (IRST) capability for its F-15C Eagle by unveiling OpenPod, a reconfigurable sensor pod which the company says is already being flight tested on a tactical military aircraft. Northrop’s system would employ an IRST produced by Italy’s Selex ES, owned by Finmeccanica.

The front end of the rail-mounted pod can be swapped out between sorties to host either an IRST, light detection and ranging (LIDAR), targeting, or communications payload.

James Mocarski, Northrop’s vice president of airborne tactical sensors, says OpenPod is the company’s answer to an unspecified air force sources-sought notice for an IRST system. It could also host the air force’s planned Maps System, a capability that will allow F-22s and F-35s to exchange tactical information with legacy fighters, he says.

“OpenPod IRST combines state-of-the-art IRST sensor system technology from our partner Selex ES with the latest advances in target identification, clutter rejection and tracking from Northrop Grumman’s F-35 distributed aperture system, fire control radar, and infrared countermeasures products,” Mocarski said at the June 2 unveiling in Washington DC. “It’s our intended entry into an upcoming air force competition for infrared search and track.”

The air force’s F-15 division has formally expressed interest in a production-ready IRST capability for fielding in 2018, and in a longer-term development effort that would acquire a more advanced system in the 2020 time frame. The sensor would allow legacy, fourth-generation aircraft to “detect, track, target, and engage threats in radar denied environments.”

Meanwhile, the air force research laboratory is exploring next-generation IRST technologies with a programme to mature and demonstrate advanced, long-range offensive infrared search and track capabilities.

Northrop’s OpenPod would will compete against Lockheed Martin’s Legion Pod, unveiled in February. Legion Pod is a derivative of the company’s IRST21 sensor for the US Navy F/A-18 Super Hornet.

Lockheed intends to qualify the Legion Pod on the F-15 and F-16 with test flights planned this spring and into 2016. Mocarski declined to name any specific aircraft type for Northrop's product, but the F-16 and F-15 would be ideal candidates.

“It’s in flight testing today and we’re meeting our technical milestones, we’re meeting our schedule milestones, and we’re meeting our cost objectives,” he says. “I can’t go into details, but we are on contract and investing our own collaborative resources as well into integration on a variety of military platforms.

“We believe that there’s a growing requirement for infrared search and track across the entire industry and around the world. Our offering would be available to any upcoming competitions, but this is the first.”

Northrop says OpenPod could host new targeting pod capabilities through the company’s long-standing relationship with Israel’s Rafael on the development and sale Litening G4. Rafael’s latest Litening design is due to become operational next year.

“The OpenPod is an upgrade path we have for Litening,” Mocarski says. “We remain committed to Litening as a product, we remain committed to our partnership with Rafael. It’s been a long-lasting relationship and we see this as the next step in Lightning development. It offers a lot of opportunities to continue to evolve and improve that product with even better capability and higher-performance sensors.”

OpenPod weighs 500lb and is designed to Northrop’s open architect standards. Host platforms could include bombers, unmanned aerial vehicles or even cargo aircraft like the Lockheed C-130 and Boeing C-17.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #98 on: September 20, 2015, 02:47:13 pm »
Lockeed Martin Unveils 'Legion Pod' for F-15, F-16 Retrofit
by Bill Carey
 - February 23, 2015, 9:44 AM

Source:
http://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news/defense/2015-02-23/lockeed-martin-unveils-legion-pod-f-15-f-16-retrofit

Quote
Lockheed Martin unveiled an internally funded multi-function sensor pod for F-15C and F-16 retrofits that incorporates its new infrared search and track (IRST) system. The Legion Pod supports collaborative targeting between multiple aircraft in radar-denied environments, the company said.

The new system is housed in a 16-inch-diameter structure and contains an advanced networking processor and datalink in addition to Lockheed Martin’s new generation AN/ASG-34 IRST sensor, which it calls IRST21. In December, the U.S. Navy received approval to begin low-rate initial production of the IRST sensor pod on the F/A-18 Super Hornet.

In an announcement earlier this month, Lockheed Martin said Legion Pod components have completed “limited qualification.” The company plans to conduct initial flight tests this year, with further testing in 2016. It said the pod would be available to support the F-15C IRST program of record for a long-range detection and tracking system. “As a flexible, production-ready system, Legion Pod can be quickly procured and integrated to meet current and emerging customer requirements,” said Ken Fuhr, Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control director of fixed wing programs.

The Legion Pod also supports the Multi-Domain Adaptable Processing System (Maps), a “communication gateway” the U.S. Air Force seeks. Maps would enable the F-22 and F-35 fifth-generation fighters to share tactical data with fourth-generation fighters such as the F-15, F-16 and F-18, as well as other platforms connected by Link 16 data link. The gateway will be hosted on the F-15C, the Air Force has said.

Offline Triton

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #99 on: September 21, 2015, 04:33:00 pm »
Yes and if the plan is to considerably upgrade the BVR capability through a new weapon then you already have a program that has demonstrated what is possible given current technology. All you need to do is roll that into a program and spend money to get this capability by 2025. There is no indication that the Raytheon weapon was the enhanced AMRAAM derivative that had been presented earlier. If one looks at the capability requirement from the T-3 it would make sense to completely replace some of the systems to get that dual use capability and If i were to guess I would guess that the missile plan for raytheon with that program was significantly different from the AMRAAM in both seeker technology, and propulsion technology. Lockheed has a multi-pulse missile proposal as well since it did not win contract awards for the T-3. I also doubt that Raytheon would be rigid when it comes to the propulsion concept, they did consider a dual pulse motor as well for the AMRAAM at one point of time. It would all come down to the range and other performance requirements for a future missile that will largely drive the choices in propulsion.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/usaf-seeks-interim-champ-longer-range-air-to-air-416828/

Hopefully the United States Air Force will get on with it.   ;)

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #100 on: September 21, 2015, 07:01:52 pm »
Published on Aug 3, 2015

Quote
Lockheed Martin’s Legion Pod recently completed its first flight test, successfully tracking multiple airborne targets while flying on an F-16 in Fort Worth, Texas. Legion Pod was integrated onto the F-16 without making any hardware or software changes to the aircraft.




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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #101 on: October 01, 2015, 07:11:35 am »
Bae Gets EPAWSS...

http://boeing.mediaroom.com/2015-10-01-Boeing-Selected-as-Prime-for-EPAWSS-Electronic-Warfare-Suite-Program?cm_mmc=BDS-_-Twitter-_-WarfareSuite-_-Program

The F-15 EPAWSS upgrade will significantly improve the F-15's capability to autonomously and automatically detect, identify and locate radio frequency (RF) threats as well as provide the ability to deny, degrade, deceive, disrupt and defeat RF and electro-optical / infrared (EO / IR) threat systems in contested and unplanned operations within highly contested environments through 2035. The F-15 EPAWSS will provide indication, type and position of ground-based RF threats as well as the indication, type and bearing of airborne threats with the situational awareness needed to avoid, engage or negate the threat. The F-15 EPAWSS will prevent RF and IR threat systems from detecting or acquiring accurate targeting information prior to threat engagement to complicate and / or negate an enemy threat targeting solution--and effectively counter enemy missiles / weapons if adversary threat systems engage and employ weapons against friendly forces--through components such as chaff, flares, decoys / angle countermeasures and jamming.

http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/library/budget/fy2015/usaf-peds/0207171f_7_pb_2015.pdf
« Last Edit: October 01, 2015, 07:33:36 am by bring_it_on »
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Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #102 on: October 01, 2015, 09:28:33 am »
Sounds like it's got a built in DIRCM.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #103 on: October 01, 2015, 10:54:16 am »
It does - although it might simply be a case of a very brief blurb failing to clearly separate capabilities according to the nature of threat (RF or EO). Nonetheless, worth watching more closely!

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #104 on: October 01, 2015, 11:01:00 am »
We're down to just 213 F-15C/Ds? Wasn't that number quite a lot higher just a few years ago?

According the this year's USAF almanac the 213 is for Cs only.  There are an additional 36 Ds and 220 Es.  There are a lot of Eagles in the Bone Yard.  :(


... or with the ANG, right?

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #105 on: October 01, 2015, 11:07:14 am »
The most detailed article I've come across was in the Old Crows journal a while back..

https://www.scribd.com/doc/283359838/EPAWS-AOC
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Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #106 on: October 01, 2015, 12:24:25 pm »
We're down to just 213 F-15C/Ds? Wasn't that number quite a lot higher just a few years ago?

According the this year's USAF almanac the 213 is for Cs only.  There are an additional 36 Ds and 220 Es.  There are a lot of Eagles in the Bone Yard.  :(


... or with the ANG, right?

Forgot to check the Guard/Reserves. 
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #107 on: October 01, 2015, 12:37:06 pm »
as per almanac's figures - usaf has 101 C and 13 D, while ANG has 112 C and 23 D.  AFRC has none.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #108 on: October 01, 2015, 12:38:04 pm »
as per almanac's figures - usaf has 101 C and 13 D, while ANG has 112 C and 23 D.  AFRC has none.

Dang.   :'(
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #109 on: October 01, 2015, 12:40:34 pm »

Boeing, BAE Will Develop EW Suite For F-15


Quote
WASHINGTON — The US Air Force selected Boeing as the prime contractor on a new, all-digital electronic warfare suite for its fleet of F-15 fighters. BAE Systems will develop the new system.

 The Air Force’s Eagle Passive Active Warning Survivability System (EPAWSS) will counter threats and better protect F-15 air crews, according to an Oct. 1 Boeing statement. The system will be installed on more than 400 F-15Es and F-15Cs, replacing the legacy Tactical Electronic Warfare System, which has been in use since the 1980s.

 The EPAWSS program is valued at $4 billion, according to the statement.

“Warfighters of today and tomorrow need the latest in jamming, targeting, infrared threat detection and enhanced decoy capabilities,” said Mike Gibbons, vice president, Global Strike Boeing F-15 programs, according to the statement. “EPAWSS will ensure the F-15 is relevant and dominant through 2040 and beyond.”

Boeing has chosen BAE Systems as the subcontractor to develop EPAWSS, which provides advanced EW capabilities and a “significant growth path” for the F-15, according to an Oct. 1 BAE Systems statement. The system will improve aircraft protection by adding advanced electronic countermeasures, radar warning and increased chaff and flare capability.

“By upgrading to an enhanced all-digital system, the Air Force, in conjunction with the platform prime, Boeing, will provide next-generation electronic warfare capability to F-15C and F-15E aircraft to help keep the platform capable and mission-ready against current and future threats, ” said Brian Walters, vice president and general manager of Electronic Combat Solutions at BAE Systems, according to the BAE statement.
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Offline Trident

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #110 on: October 01, 2015, 02:34:56 pm »
as per almanac's figures - usaf has 101 C and 13 D, while ANG has 112 C and 23 D.  AFRC has none.


Whoa - that IS unexpected!

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #111 on: October 01, 2015, 02:54:09 pm »
Well, my thought is this: How are they going to get this EW capability and IRST (As well as a helmet with missile cue tech) into the F22.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #112 on: October 01, 2015, 03:00:25 pm »
Why would you want to get "this EW" into the F-22? All you need to do is modernize the current digital EW system onboard. HMS can come through the two products that the ACC has previously shown interest in (and may have been evaluated as well), the Scorpion and JHMCSII. IRST would be harder if not completely impossible.
« Last Edit: October 01, 2015, 03:14:40 pm by bring_it_on »
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Offline Sundog

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #113 on: October 01, 2015, 04:36:17 pm »
Why would you want to get "this EW" into the F-22? All you need to do is modernize the current digital EW system onboard. HMS can come through the two products that the ACC has previously shown interest in (and may have been evaluated as well), the Scorpion and JHMCSII. IRST would be harder if not completely impossible.


Considering the F-22 was originally designed to carry IRST, I don't see what the problem is with adding it. Unless you're referencing integrating it with the on board systems.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #114 on: October 01, 2015, 05:42:51 pm »
Yup, as in using an existing systems and sensors.  You could obviously try to develop the solution that was originally intended for the program but then one must weigh that against other potential upgrade paths.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #115 on: November 30, 2015, 12:55:39 pm »
EPAWSS  MOVES  FORWARD WITH  BAE

Quote
One of the questions surrounding the design of EPAWSS has been the choice of technology  that  would  be  used  to power  the  system's  jammer  transmit­ters, whether a solid-state amplifier ap­proach  or more  conventional traveling wave  tube  (TWT)  technology.  Walters answers that question saying BAE's ap­proach is a GaN-based solid-state amplifier design. "We already consider it to be in the TRL-7 to TRL-9 range, and it will definitively be TRL-9 very shortly. We're already deploying this technology on other programs   

Moore points out that there are extensive aircraft modifications required to put a new EW system on an aircraft including, in this case, removal of the wings and replacement of the aircraft's 'tailbone' between the engine exhaust nozzles. "A lot of work has to be done all over the aircraft to support the program.

We're taking off all of the TEWS components, with a savings of 13 LRUs [Line Replaceable Units] going from TEWS to EPAWSS, so a lot of weight is being re¬moved from the aircraft, as well as providing for a smaller footprint." Moore adds that the determination of the com¬position of the Group A (cables, panels, etc.) and Group B (actual EPAWSS compo¬nents) modification kits, including any "swing" elements was also a challenge.



https://www.scribd.com/doc/291713432/EPAWSS
« Last Edit: November 30, 2015, 12:58:51 pm by bring_it_on »
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Offline fightingirish

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #116 on: December 31, 2015, 11:20:37 am »
A F-15C with a new Talon HATE pod has been spotted flying out of Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada.
Sources:
http://airwingspotter.com/f-15c-new-talon-hate-pod/
http://foxtrotalpha.jalopnik.com/here-s-the-first-shot-of-the-f-15c-pod-that-will-change-1750314539
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #117 on: December 31, 2015, 12:01:56 pm »
Bout time they enable forward/combat deployable BACN nodes.  Now they need to add MADL to it's capability set.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #118 on: December 31, 2015, 07:36:59 pm »
Talon Hate from what I recall is an interim solution before MAPS which will be competed.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #119 on: May 07, 2016, 12:03:06 pm »
USAF puts Talon HATE to the test


The US Air Force (USAF) is currently engaged in a flight test programme for its new Talon HATE pod for the F-15C Eagle. Talon HATE is a new system designed to help integrate and enhance the relationship between its two air dominance platforms - the F-15C Eagle and the F-22 Raptor.Developed initially by the company's secretive Phantom Works as a rapid-prototyping concept, Talon HATE is a podded system that combines a covert data exchange capability with an inbuilt infrared search-and-track (IRST) sensor. It has been seen flying recently with the USAF's elite 422nd Test and Evaluation Squadron (422 TES) at Nellis Air Force Base (AFB) in Nevada.

Boeing completed the final design review for Talon HATE in September 2014, although public information remains scant. Many see Talon HATE acting very much along the lines of the USAF's Battlefield Airborne Communications Node (BACN) currently deployed on E-11A, EQ-4, and WB-57 aircraft, and essentially acting as a data relay platform for a wide range of information."The system assimilates information in real-time from multiple domains, creating an improved common operating picture for tactical awareness," said Alex Lopez, vice president, Advanced Network and Space Systems at Boeing Phantom Works.

One of the major limitations of the F-22 is its inability to communicate covertly with other aircraft types, although the F-22 features an intra-flight datalink (IFDL) that enables the aircraft to exchange data within a formation of F-22 aircraft.

Similarly, the F-22's Increment 3.2A spiral upgrade added Link 16, but only as a receive-only terminal because the non-stealthy Link-16 with its omnidirectional emissions could reveal the aircraft's location.

However, under programme director Sean Rice, the Talon HATE project has integrated the F-22's IFDL with the proven Multifunctional Information Distribution System-JTRS (MIDS-J) system. MIDS-J serves as a host for multiple concurrent communications waveforms that are essential for Talon HATE operations, with Talon HATE essentially receiving and translating the F-22 data and processing it for redistribution on MIDS/Link 16 waveforms to other friendly aircraft.Four engineering and manufacturing development (EMD) pods are thought to be on contract for ACC. The first public sighting of an Eagle carrying Talon HATE was in December 2015 when 422 TES F-15C serial 83-026/OT passed through Fort Worth, Texas. Another F-15C (82-022) has also been seen active at Nellis AFB in 2016.

Despite calls to re-start F-22 production, the reality is that the F-15C is needed to help meet long-term USAF air superiority needs, and will need to work closely with the F-22.

A smooth method of covertly exchanging data between the F-22 and F-15C will have many benefits. The new system should allow the F-22 to disperse data from two of its most sophisticated sensors: the AN/APG-77 radar and AN/ALR-94 electronic warfare system, a capability hitherto seemed impossible. Meanwhile, the F-15C's new AN/APG-63(V)3 AESA radar offers extremely long-range detection.

In addition, the new IRST sensor on the Talon HATE pod will enable the F-15C pilot to transmit both long-range radar and IRST data to the F-22, increasing its detection capabilities and decreasing reliance on its own sensors - thereby helping it to remain undetected. The ability to passively relay target data forward to the F-22s will mean they only break cover when they have to release a weapon. Conversely, the F-22s will be able to act as a passive sensor for missile-laden F-15Cs.
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Offline Steve Pace

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #120 on: May 07, 2016, 01:32:34 pm »
USAF puts Talon HATE to the test


The US Air Force (USAF) is currently engaged in a flight test programme for its new Talon HATE pod for the F-15C Eagle. Talon HATE is a new system designed to help integrate and enhance the relationship between its two air dominance platforms - the F-15C Eagle and the F-22 Raptor.Developed initially by the company's secretive Phantom Works as a rapid-prototyping concept, Talon HATE is a podded system that combines a covert data exchange capability with an inbuilt infrared search-and-track (IRST) sensor. It has been seen flying recently with the USAF's elite 422nd Test and Evaluation Squadron (422 TES) at Nellis Air Force Base (AFB) in Nevada.

Boeing completed the final design review for Talon HATE in September 2014, although public information remains scant. Many see Talon HATE acting very much along the lines of the USAF's Battlefield Airborne Communications Node (BACN) currently deployed on E-11A, EQ-4, and WB-57 aircraft, and essentially acting as a data relay platform for a wide range of information."The system assimilates information in real-time from multiple domains, creating an improved common operating picture for tactical awareness," said Alex Lopez, vice president, Advanced Network and Space Systems at Boeing Phantom Works.

One of the major limitations of the F-22 is its inability to communicate covertly with other aircraft types, although the F-22 features an intra-flight datalink (IFDL) that enables the aircraft to exchange data within a formation of F-22 aircraft.

Similarly, the F-22's Increment 3.2A spiral upgrade added Link 16, but only as a receive-only terminal because the non-stealthy Link-16 with its omnidirectional emissions could reveal the aircraft's location.

However, under programme director Sean Rice, the Talon HATE project has integrated the F-22's IFDL with the proven Multifunctional Information Distribution System-JTRS (MIDS-J) system. MIDS-J serves as a host for multiple concurrent communications waveforms that are essential for Talon HATE operations, with Talon HATE essentially receiving and translating the F-22 data and processing it for redistribution on MIDS/Link 16 waveforms to other friendly aircraft.Four engineering and manufacturing development (EMD) pods are thought to be on contract for ACC. The first public sighting of an Eagle carrying Talon HATE was in December 2015 when 422 TES F-15C serial 83-026/OT passed through Fort Worth, Texas. Another F-15C (82-022) has also been seen active at Nellis AFB in 2016.

Despite calls to re-start F-22 production, the reality is that the F-15C is needed to help meet long-term USAF air superiority needs, and will need to work closely with the F-22.

A smooth method of covertly exchanging data between the F-22 and F-15C will have many benefits. The new system should allow the F-22 to disperse data from two of its most sophisticated sensors: the AN/APG-77 radar and AN/ALR-94 electronic warfare system, a capability hitherto seemed impossible. Meanwhile, the F-15C's new AN/APG-63(V)3 AESA radar offers extremely long-range detection.

In addition, the new IRST sensor on the Talon HATE pod will enable the F-15C pilot to transmit both long-range radar and IRST data to the F-22, increasing its detection capabilities and decreasing reliance on its own sensors - thereby helping it to remain undetected. The ability to passively relay target data forward to the F-22s will mean they only break cover when they have to release a weapon. Conversely, the F-22s will be able to act as a passive sensor for missile-laden F-15Cs.
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Offline fightingirish

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #121 on: May 23, 2016, 10:11:14 am »
Advanced F-15 (2040c) Air Superiority Fighter

New add by Boeing showing an upgraded F-15.
The only visible upgrades I see in this video are the AESA radar and one flatscreen in the cockpit.
Edit: This version looks to have the same upgrades as the F-15SG to the F-15E, like the F-110- GE-129 engines and the EW systems.
Video:

Code: [Select]
https://youtu.be/xGY2JBuSCU0
« Last Edit: May 23, 2016, 10:52:38 am by fightingirish »
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Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #122 on: May 23, 2016, 10:41:47 am »
F110s  (-132s?)
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #123 on: May 23, 2016, 11:23:28 am »
Enlarged hardpoints too -- one shot shows it with 16 AMRAAM (2 each on the outers, four each on the inners, plus the four shoulder stations).  [First seen on the F-15SA.]

The later air-to-ground configuration has some new weapons -- SLAM-ER is new, I believe.  I think it also has SDBs directly on shoulder stations.

The FAST packs may be a slightly different in shape as well.
« Last Edit: May 23, 2016, 11:44:00 am by TomS »

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #124 on: May 23, 2016, 12:17:36 pm »
Enlarged hardpoints too -- one shot shows it with 16 AMRAAM (2 each on the outers, four each on the inners, plus the four shoulder stations).  [First seen on the F-15SA.]

The later air-to-ground configuration has some new weapons -- SLAM-ER is new, I believe.  I think it also has SDBs directly on shoulder stations.

The FAST packs may be a slightly different in shape as well.

 Time to say 'Good night Eagle, you did you duty, but it's time to go now.' 
« Last Edit: May 23, 2016, 12:20:00 pm by Airplane »
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #125 on: May 23, 2016, 12:48:18 pm »
Turkey feathers are back and no obvious attempt at incorporating stealth.  I wonder if this is an export oriented design or aimed more towards plugging the gap between the limited numbers of F-22's and availability of F-35's.  The video isn't at the official Boeing Youtube channel so I would guess there isn't much marketing effort being made.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #126 on: May 23, 2016, 01:01:21 pm »
Advanced F-15 (2040c) Air Superiority Fighter

New add by Boeing showing an upgraded F-15.

The credits at the end of the video are © 2014.

Regards.
Regards.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #128 on: July 26, 2016, 11:13:31 pm »
http://www.janes.com/article/62518/usaf-allocates-f-15c-upgrade-funds

Quote
The F-15 Eagle has been in service with the USAF for more than four decades, and with only about 200 operating alongside approximately 180 Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptors there is a near-term lack of pure air superiority aircraft capacity.

We'd have had another 200 F-22s by now  :'(
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Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #130 on: August 18, 2016, 10:35:38 am »
http://nationalinterest.org/blog/the-buzz/americas-f-15-fighter-will-soon-carry-double-the-amount-17384

"The US Air Force is vigorously upgrading the 1980s-era F-15 fighter by giving new weapons and sensors in the hope of maintaining air-to-air superiority over the Chinese J-10 equivalent."

Ugh.  ::)
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #131 on: August 18, 2016, 11:02:32 am »
IMHO the article means the J-11B and and its modern versions like the J-11D.
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Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #132 on: August 18, 2016, 11:15:27 am »
IMHO the article means the J-11B and and its modern versions like the J-11D.

That would make more sense.
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Offline Sundog

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #133 on: August 18, 2016, 05:23:33 pm »
Yeah, it makes sense, based on this paragraph;

Quote
As an example, the report said that in the 1980s, the US F-15 was vastly superior to the Chinese equivalent – the J-10. However, Chinese technical advances in recent years have considerably narrowed that gap to the point where the Chinese J-10 is now roughly comparable to the US F-15, the report explained.

The J-10 didn't even exist in the 80's.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #134 on: August 19, 2016, 03:53:02 am »
Yeah, it makes sense, based on this paragraph;

Quote
As an example, the report said that in the 1980s, the US F-15 was vastly superior to the Chinese equivalent – the J-10. However, Chinese technical advances in recent years have considerably narrowed that gap to the point where the Chinese J-10 is now roughly comparable to the US F-15, the report explained.

The J-10 didn't even exist in the 80's.

The J-10 is more comparable to an F-16.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #135 on: August 19, 2016, 06:27:26 am »
Has anyone done a cost comparison of the costs of upgrading and keeping the Eagles flying and relevant as compared to the costs of what would have been spent to procure another 100 F-22s?  What a gigantic waste of money it is to upgrade 25 year old airframes when a better solution was already in production.  I would rather have another 100 F-22s than a couple hundy upgraded F-15s.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #136 on: August 19, 2016, 06:34:04 am »
Has anyone done a cost comparison of the costs of upgrading and keeping the Eagles flying and relevant as compared to the costs of what would have been spent to procure another 100 F-22s?  What a gigantic waste of money it is to upgrade 25 year old airframes when a better solution was already in production.  I would rather have another 100 F-22s than a couple hundy upgraded F-15s.

Nobody ever accused politicians of being intelligent.
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Offline bobbymike

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #137 on: August 19, 2016, 09:09:57 am »
Has anyone done a cost comparison of the costs of upgrading and keeping the Eagles flying and relevant as compared to the costs of what would have been spent to procure another 100 F-22s?  What a gigantic waste of money it is to upgrade 25 year old airframes when a better solution was already in production.  I would rather have another 100 F-22s than a couple hundy upgraded F-15s.

Nobody ever accused politicians of being intelligent.
And add the cost of attrition in a possible near peer aerial war? How many non-stealthy F-15s would be lost as compared to F-22s? 
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Offline Airplane

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #138 on: August 19, 2016, 02:22:07 pm »
Has anyone done a cost comparison of the costs of upgrading and keeping the Eagles flying and relevant as compared to the costs of what would have been spent to procure another 100 F-22s?  What a gigantic waste of money it is to upgrade 25 year old airframes when a better solution was already in production.  I would rather have another 100 F-22s than a couple hundy upgraded F-15s.

Nobody ever accused politicians of being intelligent.
And add the cost of attrition in a possible near peer aerial war? How many non-stealthy F-15s would be lost as compared to F-22s?

Precisely.  Same for the B-2s and money dumped into the 52 fleet. It would have been better to have a numerically smaller modern fleet than the flying museum pieces we now got.
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Offline Triton

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #139 on: August 19, 2016, 02:56:59 pm »
Was the study ever released that the House of Representatives requested back in April of this year concerning the cost of restarting F-22 production?
« Last Edit: August 19, 2016, 03:42:12 pm by Triton »

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #140 on: August 19, 2016, 03:47:50 pm »
Has anyone done a cost comparison of the costs of upgrading and keeping the Eagles flying and relevant as compared to the costs of what would have been spent to procure another 100 F-22s?  What a gigantic waste of money it is to upgrade 25 year old airframes when a better solution was already in production.  I would rather have another 100 F-22s than a couple hundy upgraded F-15s.

Nobody ever accused politicians of being intelligent.

Another 100 F-22A Raptors benefits Lockheed Martin and the Dallas-Fort Worth economy. Politicians representing Boeing, and local economies benefiting from Boeing contracts, would rather see that money go to Boeing. Plus, how to you keep the Berkeley, Missouri factory going so that Boeing can bid on T-X and the sixth-generation Navy and Air Force fighter?

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #141 on: August 19, 2016, 05:47:26 pm »
I am pretty sure the F-22 was made in Georgia.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #142 on: August 23, 2016, 03:19:54 pm »
Was the study ever released that the House of Representatives requested back in April of this year concerning the cost of restarting F-22 production?

The Represenative that pushed for the study (Forbes [R-VA] ) lost in the primaries.
« Last Edit: August 23, 2016, 03:21:43 pm by marauder2048 »

Offline marauder2048

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #143 on: August 23, 2016, 04:16:49 pm »
Cross posting this from NGAD since the pod replaces a 600 gallon tank on an F-15.

Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems, Redondo Beach, California, has been awarded a $39,339,172 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for Self-Protect High Energy Laser Demonstrator (SHiELD) Turret Research in Aero-Effects (STRAFE) program. Contractor will develop and deliver an advanced beam control system for integration as part of a complete laser weapons system into a tactical pod on an Air Force fighter aircraft.  STRAFE will increase the knowledge and understanding of aero-optic disturbances in a supersonic environment by collecting data during engagement scenarios. Work will be performed at Redondo Beach, California; and Kirtland Air Force Base, New Mexico, and is expected to be complete by Aug. 31, 2021. This award is the result of a competitive acquisition with three offers received. Fiscal 2016 research, development, test and evaluation funds in the amount of $9,230,916 are being obligated at the time of award. Air Force Research Laboratory, Kirtland Air Force Base, New Mexico, is the contracting activity (FA9451-16-C-0007).

Offline NeilChapman

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #144 on: September 03, 2016, 09:07:20 am »


http://fox6now.com/2016/09/02/u-s-air-force-investing-12-billion-in-upgrading-1980s-era-f-15-fighter-jets/

435 F-15's to be upgraded. 

1.  Is there a more definitive list of what's included in the upgrade?  This article is not too specific.
2.  Where is the work going to take place?
3.  What is the rate of production?


Thx!

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #145 on: September 03, 2016, 11:40:43 am »


http://fox6now.com/2016/09/02/u-s-air-force-investing-12-billion-in-upgrading-1980s-era-f-15-fighter-jets/

435 F-15's to be upgraded. 

1.  Is there a more definitive list of what's included in the upgrade?  This article is not too specific.
2.  Where is the work going to take place?
3.  What is the rate of production?


Thx!
I welcome the news, however, no matter how many times I read this:

Quote
The Air Force initially planned to replace the entire F-15 fleet with the fifth-generation F-22 Raptor, but production of the stealthy aircraft was halted in 2009 and only 188 of the 749 F-22s purchased by the Pentagon were ever produced.

 :'( :'( :'( :'(
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #146 on: September 03, 2016, 03:37:07 pm »


http://fox6now.com/2016/09/02/u-s-air-force-investing-12-billion-in-upgrading-1980s-era-f-15-fighter-jets/

435 F-15's to be upgraded. 

1.  Is there a more definitive list of what's included in the upgrade?  This article is not too specific.
2.  Where is the work going to take place?
3.  What is the rate of production?


Thx!

- AESA Radars
- EPAWSS
- IRST sensor (not sure every one of those 400+ will get them though)
- Mission Computers

- Structural Upgrades if required

They would probably like cockpit upgrades similar to what the F-15 SA's are expected to get, but those are currently not planned. 

Quote
3.  What is the rate of production?

By production, I assume you mean upgrade. Different upgrade programs have different timelines. The AESA upgrades are happening as we speak. Don't have the exact per year schedule, but globally Raytheon had delivered the 200th AESA for the F-15 fleet by Nov. of last year so I guess one could subtract the export aircraft and get an idea of the currently upgraded USAF fleet.

 The EPAWSS IOC is expected by 2021 for the F-15E's and a year or so later for the C's. From the article posted a couple of pages earlier -

Quote
Boeing anticipates receiving a follow-on EPAWSS contract from the Air Force in September 2016 for the EMD, integration and test phase of the program. This will be followed by a low rate initial production (LRIP) phase currently anticipated for August 2019. As Moore notes, "EPAWSS is an Acquisition Category 1 program (a program over $2 billion), so we go through an extensive acquisition process and must pass through each of the Air Force's milestone gates to proceed into the next phase." In the LRIP phase, 24 F-15E model aircraft and 18 F-15C model aircraft will be modified. The remaining aircraft will be upgraded in the full-rate production phase with, ultimately, over 400 F-15E and F-15C model aircraft to be equipped with the new system. Initial Operational Capability (IOC) is targeted for 2021 for E-model aircraft, and late 2022 for C-models.

« Last Edit: September 03, 2016, 03:57:48 pm by bring_it_on »
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #147 on: September 14, 2016, 10:50:51 pm »
Long-Term Eagle Options

—John A. Tirpak

9/15/2016

​St. Louis—Mindful of the Air Force’s tight tactical aircraft budget, Boeing is offering the service a more modest package of F-15 upgrades than it has previously. Gone are the headliner F-15 “Silent Eagle” proposals—first pitched seven years ago—which would have made the jet more stealthy, supplanted by a package that will instead make the Eagle a better partner for the F-22 and F-35, said Larry Burt, of  Boeing’s Global Strike business sector. Speaking at a Boeing-sponsored briefing for reporters at its defense systems offices, Burt said the company is offering a program of upgrades that could be added when the aircraft come in for service life extension work, some of which is already under contract. Boeing is proposing changes that will keep the F-15C “combat relevant going into the 2030s and 2040s,” which is how long USAF now thinks it may have to keep the Eagle, Burt said. The changes center on improving the F-15’s radar, loadout—the number of air-to-air and other weapons it can carry—as well as increasing its range, adding an infrared search and track system, adding communications capability so the F-15 can talk to the F-35 and F-22, and an omnibus electronic warfare update. The F-15 could be upgraded with new “quad racks” that could double its dogfight missile payload to 16 or even 22 rounds, while range could be extended by adding conformal fuel tanks to the C model like those on the F-15E Strike Eagle version.

USAF’s mantra for the future fight is to “bring rails” with more shots, Burt said. The CFTs would free up a station on each wing for more missiles, and the CFTs themselves could carry racks. The IRST—which is not on the F-22 and is in a different form on the F-35—could passively detect adversary jets that will be increasingly stealthy over the next two decades, Burt said. “A lot of the Silent Eagle is here,” Burt said, but “we’ve right-sized the capability package,” said Dan Gillian,  vice president of the F/A-18 and EA-18 programs. The Air National Guard is buying 11 CFT sets and has an option for 200 more, Burt said. The structural improvements Boeing has discussed with the Air Force that would extend the Eagles into the 2040s include new wings, longerons, and other load-bearing elements, and there is always “the possibility of some new-builds,” Burt said. Boeing has a standing offer to produce more F-15s for the Air Force, and the line will stay open at the rate of one per month through 2019 for Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Other operators include Israel, Japan, Korea, and Singapore.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #149 on: September 16, 2016, 10:27:29 am »
http://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news/defense/2015-09-22/boeing-proposes-new-life-lethality-f-15c-fighter
That picture shows 16 missiles I wonder (from my post one up from yours) where the extra 6 missiles would go in a 22 missile configuration?
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #150 on: September 16, 2016, 10:39:43 am »
Possibly on the outer wing hardpoints, which are not currently used in the C model

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #151 on: September 16, 2016, 11:24:03 am »
Possibly on the outer wing hardpoints, which are not currently used in the C model

Weren't there structural problems that eliminated the use of those two pylons?  (Similar to the reason 4 tanks are never carried on the F-22 despite that being the intent.)
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #152 on: September 16, 2016, 11:46:32 am »
Possibly on the outer wing hardpoints, which are not currently used in the C model

Weren't there structural problems that eliminated the use of those two pylons?  (Similar to the reason 4 tanks are never carried on the F-22 despite that being the intent.)

The F-15SA uses them, and Boeing has shown them in other illustrations of the 16-shooter configuration (in lieu of the double racks on the shoulder stations).  Might be that you need to swap the C's wing for the E's?




Offline marauder2048

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #153 on: September 16, 2016, 12:09:54 pm »
I thought the activation of the outer wing hardpoints had more to do with the Digitial FBW that permitted them to compensate for asymmetric external stores.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #154 on: September 16, 2016, 02:03:58 pm »
Has anyone done a cost comparison of the costs of upgrading and keeping the Eagles flying and relevant as compared to the costs of what would have been spent to procure another 100 F-22s?  What a gigantic waste of money it is to upgrade 25 year old airframes when a better solution was already in production.  I would rather have another 100 F-22s than a couple hundy upgraded F-15s.

RAND study in 2010 stated 75 F-22's (block buy) would have been ~US$13Billion in FY08 dollars.  The same RAND study estimated >~US$19Billion to restart production line and build 75 jets in FY2010 dollars.  In hindsight, it would be nice to have more F-22's but it turns out the F-22 is a bitch to upgrade.  It's highly specialized and was at the forefront of stealth tech maturity.  It's mission capable rate is ~65%.

But say that's OK and you wanted to build another 100 F-22's today (6 years later) you'd have to

1.  Figure out what you don't have - tool-wise.  Recall they went to check on the production tooling that was supposedly saved and some of the boxes were empty.
2.  Figure out which of the over 1000 subcontractors still have the info/tools/etc they need to produce the parts.
3.  Complete that gap analysis.
4.  Figure out what you want to put into the restarted production.  Engine/systems/etc.
5.  Design the modified airframe.  It's going to be somewhat different because the engines, RAM and other tech will be different.
6.  Now you can determine what it's going to cost.
7.  Complete the design/risk reduction/EMD phase and train the workforce.
8.  Run through LRIP and testing
9.  Complete IoC
10.  Complete FoC

Costs include...
1.  The gap analysis above
2.  The design/risk reduction/EMD phase would be at least what the F-15 upgrade is costing.
3.  The acquisition costs which would be north of US$150Million per copy w/o EMD costs or >US$270Million per copy when US$12Billion in EMD costs are added across 100 airframes - ~US$27-30Billion
4.  And, you're looking at minimum 5 if not 10 years before you get a single airframe.

- or -

You can start upgrading 435 F-15's - TODAY.  Then award a PCA contract in 2018 with a 2025-2028 IOC which will take advantage of new engine technology + maturation of the F-35 systems and other stealth advances.

----------

With the state of readiness that's being reported, upgrading F-15's (and F-22's) is critical.  The US needs to get it's pilots back flying 30+ hours per month asap.  Want to see F-35 production at 180 jets per year as well instead of the planned 120 in 2019.




Link to the RAND study referenced
http://www.rand.org/content/dam/rand/pubs/monographs/2010/RAND_MG797.pdf





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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #155 on: September 16, 2016, 03:33:07 pm »
It's important to keep in mind that the F-15 upgrades aren't entirely an Air Force (ACC) decision.
There is intense congressional pressure for ANG F-15 upgrades and the HASC will typically add F-15 upgrades regardless of what the AF requests.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #156 on: November 17, 2016, 05:10:22 pm »
http://dsca.mil/major-arms-sales/government-qatar-f-15qa-aircraft-weapons-and-related-support

WASHINGTON, Nov. 17, 2016 - The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of Qatar for F-15QA aircraft with weapons and related support, equipment, and training. The estimated cost is $21.1 billion. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale on November 17, 2016.

The Government of Qatar requested to purchase seventy-two (72) F-15QA multi-role fighter aircraft and associated weapons package; the provision for continental United States based Lead-in-Fighter-Training for the F-15QA; associated ground support; training materials; mission critical resources and maintenance support equipment; the procurement for various weapon support and test equipment spares; technical publications; personnel training; simulators and other training equipment; U.S. Government and contractor engineering; technical and logistics support services; and other related elements of logistical and program support. The estimated total program value is $21.1 billion.

This proposed sale enhances the foreign policy and national security of the United State by helping to improve the security of a friendly country and strengthening our strategically important relationship. Qatar is an important force for political stability and economic progress in the Persian Gulf region. Our mutual defense interests anchor our relationship and the Qatar Emiri Air Force (QEAF) plays a predominant role in Qatar's defense.

The proposed sale improves Qatar's capability to meet current and future enemy air-to-air and air-to-ground threats. Qatar will use the capability as a deterrent to regional threats and to strengthen its homeland defense. Qatar will have no difficulty absorbing these aircraft into its armed forces.

The proposed sale of this aircraft, equipment, training, and support services will not alter the basic military balance in the region.

The prime contractor will be Boeing Corporation of Chicago, IL. The Purchaser typically requests offsets. Any offset agreement will be defined in negotiations between the purchaser and the contractor. Additional contractors include:

Astronautics Corporation of America, Arlington VA
BAE Systems, Arlington, VA
Elbit Systems of America, Fort Worth, TX
General Electric Aviation of Cincinnati, OH
Honeywell Aerospace, Phoenix, AZ
Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company, Fort Worth, TX
L3 Communications, Arlington, TX
NAVCOM, Torrance, CA Raytheon, Waltham, MA
Rockwell Collins, Cedar Rapids, IA
Teledyne Electronic Safety Products, Thousand Oaks, CA
UTC Aerospace Systems, Charlotte, NC

Implementation of this sale requires the assignment of approximately 24 additional U.S. Government and approximately 150 contractor representatives to Qatar.

There is no adverse impact on U.S. defense readiness as a result of this proposed sale.

This notice of a potential sale is required by law and does not mean the sale has been concluded.

All questions regarding this proposed Foreign Military Sale should be directed to the State Department's Bureau of Political Military Affairs, Office of Congressional and Public Affairs, pm-cpa@state.gov.


Offline bobbymike

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #157 on: December 15, 2016, 02:18:16 am »
From AFA:

Seymour Johnson Strike Eagles Get New Radars

12/15/2016

​An F-15E Strike Eagle from the 336th Fighter Squadron sits in a hanger while members of the Radar Modernization Program Eagle team begin removing panels, Oct. 3, 2016, at Seymour Johnson AFB, N.C. Air Force photo by Airman Shawna L. Keyes.

​The Strike Eagles of the 4th Fighter Wing are about to get better eyes and ears. Airmen at Seymour Johnson AFB, N.C., and Boeing employees earlier this fall began work on the first F-15E at the base to receive the new APG-82 active electronically scanned array radar, an upgrade from its old APG-70 mechanically scanned radar. The work, stemming from a June 2016 contract worth about $27.5 million, is expected to take seven to nine years, with all 92 jets at the base receiving the upgrade. “This radar update is going to drastically improve the aircraft’s air-to-air and air-to-ground radar making it significantly more capable,” Boeing’s F-15E site lead Jonathan Pierce said in a Seymour Johnson news release. The new radar provides “near simultaneous interleaving of air-to-air and air-to-ground functions,” along with better combat identification, longer air-to-air target detection and tracking, higher resolution air-to-ground radar mapping, and it improves ground moving target track capability. The new radars are in other aircraft such as F-22s and F-35s, and the Air National Guard is working to outfit some of its F-16s with them.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #158 on: December 15, 2016, 05:51:40 am »
From AFA:

Seymour Johnson Strike Eagles Get New Radars

12/15/2016

​An F-15E Strike Eagle from the 336th Fighter Squadron sits in a hanger while members of the Radar Modernization Program Eagle team begin removing panels, Oct. 3, 2016, at Seymour Johnson AFB, N.C. Air Force photo by Airman Shawna L. Keyes.

​The Strike Eagles of the 4th Fighter Wing are about to get better eyes and ears. Airmen at Seymour Johnson AFB, N.C., and Boeing employees earlier this fall began work on the first F-15E at the base to receive the new APG-82 active electronically scanned array radar, an upgrade from its old APG-70 mechanically scanned radar. The work, stemming from a June 2016 contract worth about $27.5 million, is expected to take seven to nine years, with all 92 jets at the base receiving the upgrade. “This radar update is going to drastically improve the aircraft’s air-to-air and air-to-ground radar making it significantly more capable,” Boeing’s F-15E site lead Jonathan Pierce said in a Seymour Johnson news release. The new radar provides “near simultaneous interleaving of air-to-air and air-to-ground functions,” along with better combat identification, longer air-to-air target detection and tracking, higher resolution air-to-ground radar mapping, and it improves ground moving target track capability. The new radars are in other aircraft such as F-22s and F-35s, and the Air National Guard is working to outfit some of its F-16s with them.

Upgrading only 10 jets a year for 9 years with a new radar isn't laughable. It's sad. It should be 5-6/month.  It's not as if Boeing is still churning out hundreds of 15s a year. They should have more than enough floor space and idle engineers/technicians.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #159 on: December 15, 2016, 06:12:51 am »
There are also funding limitations. You only install as many as you can afford to fund for a given year. As of the FY17 budget request, as long as the BCA remains the USAF intends on a peak rate of 32 a year  FY18 through FY-21. If the budget caps are lifted, perhaps they can accelerate it.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2016, 06:22:35 am by bring_it_on »
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #160 on: December 15, 2016, 06:39:16 am »
From AFA:

Seymour Johnson Strike Eagles Get New Radars

12/15/2016

​An F-15E Strike Eagle from the 336th Fighter Squadron sits in a hanger while members of the Radar Modernization Program Eagle team begin removing panels, Oct. 3, 2016, at Seymour Johnson AFB, N.C. Air Force photo by Airman Shawna L. Keyes.

​The Strike Eagles of the 4th Fighter Wing are about to get better eyes and ears. Airmen at Seymour Johnson AFB, N.C., and Boeing employees earlier this fall began work on the first F-15E at the base to receive the new APG-82 active electronically scanned array radar, an upgrade from its old APG-70 mechanically scanned radar. The work, stemming from a June 2016 contract worth about $27.5 million, is expected to take seven to nine years, with all 92 jets at the base receiving the upgrade. “This radar update is going to drastically improve the aircraft’s air-to-air and air-to-ground radar making it significantly more capable,” Boeing’s F-15E site lead Jonathan Pierce said in a Seymour Johnson news release. The new radar provides “near simultaneous interleaving of air-to-air and air-to-ground functions,” along with better combat identification, longer air-to-air target detection and tracking, higher resolution air-to-ground radar mapping, and it improves ground moving target track capability. The new radars are in other aircraft such as F-22s and F-35s, and the Air National Guard is working to outfit some of its F-16s with them.

Upgrading only 10 jets a year for 9 years with a new radar isn't laughable. It's sad. It should be 5-6/month.  It's not as if Boeing is still churning out hundreds of 15s a year. They should have more than enough floor space and idle engineers/technicians.
10 a year would be enough.................if 60 F-22s were rolling of the line every year  :'(
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #161 on: December 15, 2016, 07:42:52 am »
From AFA:

Seymour Johnson Strike Eagles Get New Radars

12/15/2016

​An F-15E Strike Eagle from the 336th Fighter Squadron sits in a hanger while members of the Radar Modernization Program Eagle team begin removing panels, Oct. 3, 2016, at Seymour Johnson AFB, N.C. Air Force photo by Airman Shawna L. Keyes.

​The Strike Eagles of the 4th Fighter Wing are about to get better eyes and ears. Airmen at Seymour Johnson AFB, N.C., and Boeing employees earlier this fall began work on the first F-15E at the base to receive the new APG-82 active electronically scanned array radar, an upgrade from its old APG-70 mechanically scanned radar. The work, stemming from a June 2016 contract worth about $27.5 million, is expected to take seven to nine years, with all 92 jets at the base receiving the upgrade. “This radar update is going to drastically improve the aircraft’s air-to-air and air-to-ground radar making it significantly more capable,” Boeing’s F-15E site lead Jonathan Pierce said in a Seymour Johnson news release. The new radar provides “near simultaneous interleaving of air-to-air and air-to-ground functions,” along with better combat identification, longer air-to-air target detection and tracking, higher resolution air-to-ground radar mapping, and it improves ground moving target track capability. The new radars are in other aircraft such as F-22s and F-35s, and the Air National Guard is working to outfit some of its F-16s with them.

Upgrading only 10 jets a year for 9 years with a new radar isn't laughable. It's sad. It should be 5-6/month.  It's not as if Boeing is still churning out hundreds of 15s a year. They should have more than enough floor space and idle engineers/technicians.
10 a year would be enough.................if 60 F-22s were rolling of the line every year  :'(

I would love to see the 22 come back at 60 a year, much in the same way Regan brought back the Bone as an interim >ahem< bomber until the B-2 was ready. 60 Raptors would be enough to replace 90 Eagles given the survivability of the Raptor over the Eagle.
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Offline marauder2048

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #162 on: December 15, 2016, 11:45:00 am »


Upgrading only 10 jets a year for 9 years with a new radar isn't laughable. It's sad. It should be 5-6/month.  It's not as if Boeing is still churning out hundreds of 15s a year. They should have more than enough floor space and idle engineers/technicians.

I suspect it's more of a capacity issue at Raytheon; the AN/APG-82 draws from the same supply/foundry base
as the AN/APG-79 and the AN/APG-63v(3).

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #163 on: March 01, 2017, 06:24:56 am »
Is there anybody who can shed some light on the mods connected to the Talon Hate pod. There is a large bulb which is positioned on top of the F-15 near the Vulcan gun drum? See picture from Nellis.
What is the use of that and the equipment on the side of the bulb? transmitting to space? Connection to the pods use?

Second question is about the small ball shape just aft of the radome on top and one at the same positon but then on the underside of the F-15. What is the purpose of that?

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #164 on: March 01, 2017, 07:14:47 am »
Aren't the three key capabilities the sat link, MIDS, and a air-ground link?

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #165 on: March 01, 2017, 12:54:17 pm »
Isn't there more in the bulge than a satellite up link? It is huge and has equipment on the corners of the bulge on top? In what way is the bulge on top connected to the Talon HATE pod?
« Last Edit: March 02, 2017, 01:53:29 am by GJ33 »

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« Last Edit: March 15, 2017, 06:37:02 pm by bobbymike »
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #167 on: March 15, 2017, 07:01:03 pm »
Isn't there more in the bulge than a satellite up link? It is huge and has equipment on the corners of the bulge on top? In what way is the bulge on top connected to the Talon HATE pod?
The corner items might be upper-hemisphere IFDL apertures, or maybe (but less likely) missile approach warning sensors.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #168 on: March 23, 2017, 12:39:43 pm »
​USAF calls plans to retire F-15s "pre-decisional"

Quote
The US Air Force says it’s too soon to say whether the service will swap out retired Boeing F-15C and F-15Ds for updated Lockheed Martin F-16.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/usaf-calls-plans-to-retire-f-15s-pre-decisional-435480/

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #169 on: March 23, 2017, 03:43:21 pm »
"F-16 ADF 2.0"  ::) ;)
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #170 on: March 23, 2017, 04:38:40 pm »
​USAF calls plans to retire F-15s "pre-decisional"

Quote
The US Air Force says it’s too soon to say whether the service will swap out retired Boeing F-15C and F-15Ds for updated Lockheed Martin F-16.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/usaf-calls-plans-to-retire-f-15s-pre-decisional-435480/

The whole notion gives new meaning to the term, "face palm".
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #171 on: March 24, 2017, 07:24:52 am »
​USAF calls plans to retire F-15s "pre-decisional"

Quote
The US Air Force says it’s too soon to say whether the service will swap out retired Boeing F-15C and F-15Ds for updated Lockheed Martin F-16.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/usaf-calls-plans-to-retire-f-15s-pre-decisional-435480/

The whole notion gives new meaning to the term, "face palm".

If we can't build more Raptors because of politics and 'Oh woe is me, it's too hard to restart the line', then we should at least buy ~250 new build Eagles as an interim to PCA, and equip with a US built meteor.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2017, 07:26:47 am by Airplane »
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #172 on: March 24, 2017, 07:42:17 am »
​USAF calls plans to retire F-15s "pre-decisional"

Quote
The US Air Force says it’s too soon to say whether the service will swap out retired Boeing F-15C and F-15Ds for updated Lockheed Martin F-16.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/usaf-calls-plans-to-retire-f-15s-pre-decisional-435480/

The whole notion gives new meaning to the term, "face palm".

If we can't build more Raptors because of politics and 'Oh woe is me, it's too hard to restart the line', then we should at least buy ~250 new build Eagles as an interim to PCA, and equip with a US built meteor.

Preaching to the choir.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #173 on: March 24, 2017, 10:31:59 am »
​USAF calls plans to retire F-15s "pre-decisional"

Quote
The US Air Force says it’s too soon to say whether the service will swap out retired Boeing F-15C and F-15Ds for updated Lockheed Martin F-16.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/usaf-calls-plans-to-retire-f-15s-pre-decisional-435480/

The whole notion gives new meaning to the term, "face palm".

If we can't build more Raptors because of politics and 'Oh woe is me, it's too hard to restart the line', then we should at least buy ~250 new build Eagles as an interim to PCA, and equip with a US built meteor.

And pay for it with what? Short of cutting existing acquisition programs such as the F-35A, B-21, JSTARS-recap, nuclear programs etc you are not going to find money in the budget to pay for 250 heavy Eagles/Strike Eagles. There is probably more flexibility on the R&D side to begin increasing investments in the PCA and hope to find room to begin acquiring it in the post 2030 time-frame where you can then look at closing down the F-35A acquisition program a few years ahead of schedule to pay for the PCA.
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Offline Airplane

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #174 on: March 24, 2017, 11:18:03 am »
​USAF calls plans to retire F-15s "pre-decisional"

Quote
The US Air Force says it’s too soon to say whether the service will swap out retired Boeing F-15C and F-15Ds for updated Lockheed Martin F-16.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/usaf-calls-plans-to-retire-f-15s-pre-decisional-435480/

The whole notion gives new meaning to the term, "face palm".

If we can't build more Raptors because of politics and 'Oh woe is me, it's too hard to restart the line', then we should at least buy ~250 new build Eagles as an interim to PCA, and equip with a US built meteor.

And pay for it with what? Short of cutting existing acquisition programs such as the F-35A, B-21, JSTARS-recap, nuclear programs etc you are not going to find money in the budget to pay for 250 heavy Eagles/Strike Eagles. There is probably more flexibility on the R&D side to begin increasing investments in the PCA and hope to find room to begin acquiring it in the post 2030 time-frame where you can then look at closing down the F-35A acquisition program a few years ahead of schedule to pay for the PCA.

Pay for them with the decreased money going into government that Trump is cutting from the budget. The US *needs* to rebuild and it's going to cost money; rebuild is not going to happen without increasing the defense budget. Reagan did it. He did it, cut taxes, and got us out a recession.  The 15 line is still warm and the US needs more than 183 Raptors to tow the line. Or maybe it's possible to build 200+ F-35s a year, and the excess over the 160 planned can be a 1:1 F-15C/D replacement. It's a hell of a lot better than souped up 20 year old Vipers.
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Offline Triton

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #175 on: March 24, 2017, 12:17:00 pm »
"Is the Air Force Getting Ready to Dump the F-15?"
by Kyle Mizokami
Mar 23, 2017

Source:
http://www.popularmechanics.com/military/aviation/a25799/air-force-dump-the-f-15/

Quote
...The first F-15 flew in 1972, and full production began in 1973. The F-15 has an amazing 104-0 kill record in battle. An ongoing program to update the F-15, Golden Eagle, tests all the planes for wear and tear. The 178 planes in the best physical condition receive new APG-63V3 active electronically scanned array radars and the Joint Helmet Mounted Cuing System, allowing rapid target acquisition with infrared guided missiles. Golden Eagle fighters are paired with F-22 Raptors for fighter combat.

If the F-15s were replaced it would be with updated F-16s likely brought up to the newest F-16V standard. The -V update includes the APG-83 Scalable Agile Beam Radar (SABR), an advanced radar system that uses hardware and software from the radars that equip the F-22 and F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. SABR can identify and engage targets with AIM-120 AMRAAM radar-guided missiles at longer ranges than previous radars. The F-16V also gains the SNIPER advanced targeting pod, which is useful in identifying and targeting both air and ground targets with an infrared sensor.

What's driving this change? Cost. In 2013, the F-15 Eagle cost $41,921 an hour to fly, while the F-16C cost just $22,514 an hour. The replacement for the F-15, the newer F-22 Raptor, costs $68,362 an hour to fly, while the replacement for the F-16, the F-35, costs $42,200 an hour to fly. As more F-35s join the Air Force, their operating costs will make a dent in the Air Force's budget, and perhaps the cheaper F-16 could help.[/quote]






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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #176 on: March 24, 2017, 12:42:46 pm »
​USAF calls plans to retire F-15s "pre-decisional"

Quote
The US Air Force says it’s too soon to say whether the service will swap out retired Boeing F-15C and F-15Ds for updated Lockheed Martin F-16.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/usaf-calls-plans-to-retire-f-15s-pre-decisional-435480/

The whole notion gives new meaning to the term, "face palm".

If we can't build more Raptors because of politics and 'Oh woe is me, it's too hard to restart the line', then we should at least buy ~250 new build Eagles as an interim to PCA, and equip with a US built meteor.

And pay for it with what? Short of cutting existing acquisition programs such as the F-35A, B-21, JSTARS-recap, nuclear programs etc you are not going to find money in the budget to pay for 250 heavy Eagles/Strike Eagles. There is probably more flexibility on the R&D side to begin increasing investments in the PCA and hope to find room to begin acquiring it in the post 2030 time-frame where you can then look at closing down the F-35A acquisition program a few years ahead of schedule to pay for the PCA.

Pay for them with the decreased money going into government that Trump is cutting from the budget. The US *needs* to rebuild and it's going to cost money; rebuild is not going to happen without increasing the defense budget. Reagan did it. He did it, cut taxes, and got us out a recession.  The 15 line is still warm and the US needs more than 183 Raptors to tow the line. Or maybe it's possible to build 200+ F-35s a year, and the excess over the 160 planned can be a 1:1 F-15C/D replacement. It's a hell of a lot better than souped up 20 year old Vipers.

A single dollar above the budget caps requires 60 votes in the senate. How are you going to cut the non defense discretionary spending and yet secure those votes? You'd probably need 10 democrats if you take into account a couple of republicans that could sway either way but it seems extremely unlikely that Trump or anyone else for that matter will be successful in unilaterally increasing defense spending beyond current levels while at the same time reducing spending elsewhere. Not in the current political environment. So that really is not a realistic option. Moving on, the current 4% FY18 increase in defense spending is to a large part focused on readiness (as it should be) and from what it appears the Navy and the Army have featured better as far as the defense spike. A fully funded nuclear recapitalization program and a 350 ship Navy is likely to eat most of the modest budget growth you are likely to see.

This leaves two realistic options. Option 1 would be to give in and increase spending everywhere and through it adding to the debt, or 2, removing the budget control act and with it the sequester so that you can in the future pass a defense plan through a simple majority. Option 1 is unlikely to happen as long as the OMB director is around and option 2 has already been walked back upon compared to the campaign promises and is also likely to be opposed by the fiscal conservatives in Trump's own party. Where does this leave us? A modest hike in defense spending compared to proposed Obama levels which will be insufficient to fund any new large acquisition programs for the USAF.

This then takes us back to the current state of affairs which would force the USAF to make choices. It is also tough to go to congress with a plan to cut a heavy figther in the fleet on account of O&S reduction and then put forth a proposal to buy the same. Most likely, this is one thing they are looking at and it won't really be followed through upon. It is budget season after all.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2017, 04:20:54 pm by bring_it_on »
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Offline marauder2048

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #177 on: March 24, 2017, 03:28:13 pm »
Some background: ADCP-II is the prerequisite for IRST, EPAWSS, advanced datalinks, advanced radar modes etc.
But ADCP-II is physically and logically incompatible with the mechanically scanned arrays in the F-15 fleet.

At the moment, all F-15Es are all programmed budgetarily to have AESAs but that's not the case with the F-15C/D fleet particularly the ANG fighters.

They have ruled out maintaining a split ADCP-II/non-ADCP-II F-15 fleet which means all the F-15C/Ds need the AESA.
So you have to find the money for that which has to be weighed against other priorities e.g. F-16 AESAs. 
But because of the ANG angle, I would expect Congressional plus-ups for F-15 C/D AESAs to be an easy sell.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #178 on: April 20, 2017, 10:56:26 am »
"Podcast: Decoding the F-15 Retirement Proposal"
Apr 20, 2017 Jen DiMascio, Lara Seligman and James Drew  | Aviation Week & Space Technology

Source:
http://aviationweek.com/defense/podcast-decoding-f-15-retirement-proposal

« Last Edit: April 20, 2017, 10:59:04 am by Triton »

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #179 on: April 20, 2017, 11:01:25 am »
"Boeing Opposes F-15C Retirement Plan"
Apr 17, 2017 James Drew | Aerospace Daily & Defense Report

Quote
Boeing is speaking out against a controversial proposal by the U.S. Air Force to retire the F-15C Eagle fleet, saying an upgraded Lockheed Martin F-16 is no substitute for its Cold War-era air superiority fighter.

The service has floated the idea of retiring all F-15C squadrons in favor of F-16s equipped with active electronically scanned array radars for the homeland defense mission. This would avoid a major structural service life extension of the F-15C, pegged at $30-40 million per airplane for new wings and a remanufactured center fuselage. Money saved could be spent on the development and production of a future air dominance aircraft, or perhaps free up cash to boost the Lockheed F-35 Lightning II buy rate.

Boeing says the F-16 cannot match the F-15 in terms of speed, range, payload or radar capability, and would make a poor Eagle replacement, even as a short-term stopgap.

Boeing is fatigue testing the Eagle and its air-to-surface attack variant, the F-15E Strike Eagle, at the company’s plant in St. Louis. The results suggest that a relatively simple and inexpensive longeron replacement will keep the F-15 fleet soaring into the mid-2030s and perhaps longer.

The $30-40 million cost cited by the head of Air Combat Command in March represents the total cost of remanufacturing the center fuselage and installing new wings, Boeing says. That cost estimate was provided at the service’s request, it adds.

“That approach, we believe, is the costliest solution and a worst-case scenario; it’s not something we believe is under serious consideration at this time,” Steve Parker, vice president of Boeing F-15 programs, said in an April 17 interview. “That would take it out another 40-50 years.”

Parker says the longerons are already being replaced by the Air Force as the F-15s cycle through programmed depot maintenance. The total cost is $1 million per aircraft for parts and labor.

Boeing says the Eagle is structurally viable out to 15,000 flight hours with this upgrade, allowing the fleet to continue in its current role until the mid-2030s, based on current flying rates.

The Air Force will replace the longerons on all 235 F-15Cs by 2023/24 based on the current timeline. In its fiscal 2017 budget request, the service proposed flying the aircraft through 2045, which would require major structural upgrades, beginning with a full wing replacement in the 2020s.

Parker said “$1 million per aircraft is just the standalone structural modification taking it into the 2030s.”

The F-15 structural modifications are just one aspect of continued F-15 service. The Air Force already has billions of dollars tied up in capability upgrades, many of which are well underway.

The service is most of the way through a major radar upgrade, installing Raytheon’s all-digital APG-63(V)3 active electronically scanned array on the F-15C/D and APG-82(V)1 on the F-15E. The F-15E has already begun flying with the Advanced Display Core Processor II. Meanwhile, BAE Systems’ Eagle Passive Active Warning Survivability System (Epawss) electronic combat suite recently passed the government’s critical design review milestone and will transition to begin flight testing in early 2018.

Boeing says all these pieces will keep the F-15C’s talons sharp well into the 2030s. Retiring the F-15 early would diminish the service’s fighter capacity and capability, the firm says.

The Air Force’s F-15 to F-16 transition proposal is being considered as part of the fiscal 2019 “planning choices” process. It would mostly affect the Air National Guard, but also active-duty squadrons based in the UK and Japan.
“Why would you divest and replace [the F-15C] with an asset that does not have as capable of a radar system, doesn’t have the range, speed and payload and the same ability to protect the homeland?” Parker asks. “If we’re under attack, don’t you want the fastest, quickest platform that can carry more and take the threat out?”

The F-15 was originally meant to be replaced by the Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor, of which Boeing was a key supplier. But the production run was truncated at 187 operational aircraft and closed in 2011.

The Air Force’s Penetrating Counter-Air/F-X program, which is in the analysis of alternatives phase, is meant to field enough aircraft by the 2030s to allow the 183-aircraft F-22 fleet to assume the Eagle’s homeland defense role. Separately, the service has approved a Lockheed-run service life extension of the F-16C/D, adding 4,000 hr. of additional structural life to 300 select Block 40-52 aircraft, keeping them around until 2048.

Even with the question mark hanging over the F-15C fleet, Boeing is still pitching “2040C Eagle” capability upgrades to the Air Force and potential international customers, such as Qatar.

The 2040C capability suite includes conformal fuel tanks, an infrared search-and-track sensor, a fifth-generation communications gateway, and quad-pack missile racks on weapon stations No. 2 and No. 8, in addition to the electronic warfare, radar and processor improvements.

Boeing says there is strong interest in these capabilities, and it recently signed a contract with the Air National Guard to conduct airworthiness tests of conformal fuel tanks.

The company also is developing the missile racks on its own dime to carry four Raytheon AIM-120 Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missiles apiece instead of two. Boeing is demonstrating the quad-pack racks for an undisclosed international customer, with flight testing expected this year.

“We’ve seen renewed interest, even with the chitter-chatter about the predicational [retirement plan],” Parker says. “If you’re a nation and you need to defend your sovereignty, you need an air superiority fighter. We have the best, most advanced air superiority fighter currently in production.”

Offline pathology_doc

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #180 on: April 20, 2017, 12:37:31 pm »
The air defence of the United States is a task which IMHO requires a big, two-engined, two-man interceptor with plenty of weapons and fuel. The F-22 is better used for air superiority at the sharp end, with perhaps a few dedicated to the protection of extremely high-importance threat axes or a backstops for the F-15's. Oh, and reopen the line and build at least two hundred more.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #181 on: April 21, 2017, 08:40:16 am »
The air defence of the United States is a task which IMHO requires a big, two-engined, two-man interceptor with plenty of weapons and fuel.

I'd agree with most of this except for the two-man requirement. I'd also be interested to hear how the lessons learned from the F-16 ADF would be applied to the determination of what would serve homeland air defense the "best." For that matter, I don't think the F-106 was ever considered to be deficient as an air defense interceptor, just overtaken by technology.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #183 on: January 26, 2018, 08:06:04 am »
First flight with the Legion Pod..

https://twitter.com/BoeingDefense
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Offline Flyaway

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #184 on: February 23, 2018, 01:48:17 pm »
This news article seems applicable to this thread.

New wings on Qatar F-15s pave upgrade path for USAF

Quote
A Qatari order for the F-15 Advanced Eagle will introduce a new structural upgrade for the wing that could be offered as a service life extension option for the US Air Force’s F-15Cs and for the fleets of other international customers, a top Boeing manager says.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/new-wings-on-qatar-f-15s-pave-upgrade-path-for-usaf-446189/


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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #185 on: February 26, 2018, 01:28:15 pm »
Is that different from the F-15SA wing where the outer pylons are activated?

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #186 on: February 27, 2018, 12:23:18 am »
First flight with the Legion Pod..

https://twitter.com/BoeingDefense

The F-15 is such a beautiful aircraft.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #187 on: February 27, 2018, 05:04:31 pm »
The F-15 is such a beautiful aircraft.
It definitely is, to me it the F-15 has a look of raw power to it. Although there are a few minor details that upset its appearance. The different sized RWR antenna or whatever those are on top of the vertical tails and the lack of the "turkey feathers" on the engine nozzles.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #188 on: February 27, 2018, 05:53:50 pm »
The F-15 is such a beautiful aircraft.
It definitely is, to me it the F-15 has a look of raw power to it. Although there are a few minor details that upset its appearance. The different sized RWR antenna or whatever those are on top of the vertical tails and the lack of the "turkey feathers" on the engine nozzles.

The F-15 has no soul. Same for its little brother. The Tomcat ate its lunch and stole its milk money.
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Offline dan_inbox

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #189 on: March 03, 2018, 01:16:17 am »
The F-15 has no soul. Same for its little brother. The Tomcat ate its lunch and stole its milk money.
Thank you for a really informative contribution expressed in such a mature way.
It really helps the quality of this forum, and level of enjoment.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #190 on: March 03, 2018, 06:35:05 am »
Hey, AIRPLANE, "have you ever seen a grown man naked  ?"  ;D
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #191 on: March 03, 2018, 07:52:47 am »
Is that different from the F-15SA wing where the outer pylons are activated?

Seem to be.  It's basically a rewing as part of a SLEP effort.  The pylon structure is there in any case, but the proposed new wing is supposed to be stronger and longer-lived within the same outer mold line.  I suppose that might let them hang more weight on the outer pylons, but it seems to be independent of whether that station is active or not.

It's funny to see that the idea of conformal tanks holding more that just fuel is coming around yet again (cf the original FAST pack concept).  One of these times, it may stick.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #192 on: March 03, 2018, 08:32:26 am »
The F-15 is such a beautiful aircraft.
It definitely is, to me it the F-15 has a look of raw power to it. Although there are a few minor details that upset its appearance. The different sized RWR antenna or whatever those are on top of the vertical tails and the lack of the "turkey feathers" on the engine nozzles.

The F-15 has no soul. Same for its little brother. The Tomcat ate its lunch and stole its milk money.

Not every plane of note is a movie star.  Not going to lie, I love the Tomcat, but the Eagle is a damn fine airplane and still undefeated in air to air combat.  No other fighter with a noteworthy kill record can make that claim.

Offline Foo Fighter

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #193 on: March 03, 2018, 09:38:37 am »
My understanding of the Tomcat was that it was vastly underpowered with a powerplant not exactly renowned for being reliable while being very expensive.  I think they could have made the Tomcat much better.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #194 on: March 03, 2018, 02:10:56 pm »
My understanding of the Tomcat was that it was vastly underpowered with a powerplant not exactly renowned for being reliable while being very expensive.  I think they could have made the Tomcat much better.

Makes one think how well it would have performed with a couple of F-110's instead of TF-30's. ;)

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #195 on: March 03, 2018, 02:39:39 pm »
My understanding of the Tomcat was that it was vastly underpowered with a powerplant not exactly renowned for being reliable while being very expensive.  I think they could have made the Tomcat much better.

Makes one think how well it would have performed with a couple of F-110's instead of TF-30's. ;)

You mean like the F-14Bs & Ds?  ;)  And even those didn't have quite as much power as the originally planned F401-P-400

" The winner of the engine contest was the Pratt & Whitney entry, which was later redesignated F401-P-400. This engine was a derivative of the JTF22 Advanced Technology Engine, which had also spawned the F100 turbofan that was used by both the McDonnell Douglas F-15 Eagle and the General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon. The F401-P-400 offered 16,400 pounds of thrust dry and an afterburning thrust of 28,000 pounds.

The seventh Tomcat (BuNo 157986) was set aside to serve as the prototype. It flew for the first time on September 12, 1973 with one F401-P-400 engine and one TF30 engine. Later, the aircraft was equipped with two F401 engines. With the new engine, the thrust-to-weight ratio of the F-14B was raised to greater than unity, offering a much improved performance. "

vs 27k for the F110-GE-400

https://www.flightglobal.com/FlightPDFArchive/1985/1985%20-%200882.PDF
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #196 on: March 04, 2018, 01:08:44 am »
I still don't understand, what went wrong with the F-401 ?
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Offline George Allegrezza

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #197 on: March 04, 2018, 03:01:41 am »
1) The Navy didn’t prioritize it over other programs (even though Congress kept trying to give them money for it).

2) The F100 had a troubled development and the F401, as a derivative, might have been affected by the same issues.

More discussion here:

https://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,23340.0/all.html

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #198 on: March 04, 2018, 07:39:13 am »
ADCP Updates from the FY19 budget ...
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #199 on: March 04, 2018, 05:07:32 pm »
1) The Navy didn’t prioritize it over other programs (even though Congress kept trying to give them money for it).
So Congress tried to give them money for it and yet they let the program falter? I thought the F-14 was one of the Navy's top priorities at the time?
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #200 on: March 05, 2018, 05:17:28 pm »
You mean like the F-14Bs & Ds?  ;)  And even those didn't have quite as much power as the originally planned F401-P-400

" The winner of the engine contest was the Pratt & Whitney entry, which was later redesignated F401-P-400. This engine was a derivative of the JTF22 Advanced Technology Engine, which had also spawned the F100 turbofan that was used by both the McDonnell Douglas F-15 Eagle and the General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon. The F401-P-400 offered 16,400 pounds of thrust dry and an afterburning thrust of 28,000 pounds.

The seventh Tomcat (BuNo 157986) was set aside to serve as the prototype. It flew for the first time on September 12, 1973 with one F401-P-400 engine and one TF30 engine. Later, the aircraft was equipped with two F401 engines. With the new engine, the thrust-to-weight ratio of the F-14B was raised to greater than unity, offering a much improved performance. "

vs 27k for the F110-GE-400

https://www.flightglobal.com/FlightPDFArchive/1985/1985%20-%200882.PDF

Thanks, I hadn't realized it ever actually was flown with the 401s.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2018, 05:19:55 pm by Sundog »

Offline George Allegrezza

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #201 on: March 05, 2018, 05:30:47 pm »
So Congress tried to give them money for it and yet they let the program falter? I thought the F-14 was one of the Navy's top priorities at the time?

As I read the historical info in that thread, while the F-14 was a major priority for the Navy, the improved engine was not.  Like today, there were a lot of competing needs and budgets were tight. 

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #202 on: March 05, 2018, 05:37:08 pm »
As I read the historical info in that thread, while the F-14 was a major priority for the Navy, the improved engine was not.  Like today, there were a lot of competing needs and budgets were tight.

I see although it seems a questionable decision considering that the F-14 really needed a better engine to reach its full potential. It might well have paid for itself too considering all of the F-14As lost to troubles with the TF30s over the years.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2018, 05:03:21 pm by Colonial-Marine »
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Offline George Allegrezza

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #203 on: March 05, 2018, 08:30:38 pm »
I don’t disagree, but that’s what seems to have been the case.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #204 on: March 06, 2018, 07:17:24 pm »
As I read the historical info in that thread, while the F-14 was a major priority for the Navy, the improved engine was not.  Like today, there were a lot of competing needs and budgets were tight.

I see although it seems a questionable decision considering that the F-14 really needed a better engine to reach its full potential. It might well have paid for itself too considering all of the F-14As lost to troubles with the TF30s over the years.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #205 on: March 07, 2018, 03:49:36 am »
By 1975, the TF30-powered aircraft was apparently performing well and the F100, upon which the F401 was based, was in trouble. (It would be in trouble for almost another decade.) Also, the rising cost of the F-14 had led to the low-end VFAX program, which would suck in more R&D funding.

And since the F401 never completed development, it's a stretch to argue that it would have been a safer engine than the TF30.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #206 on: March 07, 2018, 06:17:27 am »
And since the F401 never completed development, it's a stretch to argue that it would have been a safer engine than the TF30.


Except that the F100 was out of the woods before they started replacing TF30s on the Tomcat.
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Offline aim9xray

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #207 on: March 08, 2018, 08:08:20 am »
Except that the F100 was out of the woods before they started replacing TF30s on the Tomcat.

No. 

It was is different stretch of the woods in the early eighties (when P&W had quite thoroughly bent their pick with the Air Force).  See: "Great Engine War".

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #208 on: March 08, 2018, 09:01:37 am »
Except that the F100 was out of the woods before they started replacing TF30s on the Tomcat.

No. 

It was is different stretch of the woods in the early eighties (when P&W had quite thoroughly bent their pick with the Air Force).  See: "Great Engine War".

The TF30 didn't start being replaced by the F110 until the late 80s.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #209 on: March 08, 2018, 09:00:43 pm »
Early F100-PW-100s suffered from flame outs and production issues but how many F-15s were actually lost due to those engines?
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Offline thefrecklepuny

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #210 on: March 11, 2018, 03:55:47 pm »
Early F100-PW-100s suffered from flame outs and production issues but how many F-15s were actually lost due to those engines?

I think early F-15 pilots employed often minimum afterburner to avoid said flameouts. Reduced the range and endurance considerably.

Offline F-14D

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #211 on: March 19, 2018, 12:50:38 pm »
1) The Navy didn’t prioritize it over other programs (even though Congress kept trying to give them money for it).

2) The F100 had a troubled development and the F401, as a derivative, might have been affected by the same issues.

More discussion here:

https://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,23340.0/all.html

This is coming from memory, so the details may be a bit off...

The way the deal went was that the F100 and F401 were to be developed simultaneously from a common core, with USAF as the lead because they were going to buying the lion's share of engines.  They would both pitch in pay for this, Navy bearing costs of its unique components   At the point where USAF accepted/certified  the F100, any further development would be borne by USN alone. 

The F100 in development was having trouble with performance and reliability.   While USN had a fallback engine to power the F-14, the TF30 (which was only supposed to be in the first 13-69 Tomcats until they could be re-engined with the F401), the F100 was absolutely critical for USAF.  .  Without it there could be no F-15.  The most critical go/no go test was the 150 hour run, where the F100 would have to run for 150 hours  without failure, and the engine was repeatedly having trouble accomplishing this.   So the story goes, USAF finally decided to run the test and monitor the engine extremely closely.  When a component seemed to be about to fail, the test would be frozen and the part replaced before any actual failure occurred and then the test would be  resumed.   With this strategy, the F100 "passed" the test and AF accepted it. 

By the provisions of the agreement, AF no longer would be helping pay  for further development and reliability improvements of the joint project, Navy would have to pay it all from their own R&D dollars.  Since the F-14 was suffering from cost growth  (as was everything else) and Congress was threatening to cut off money, the Navy couldn't see paying what it would cost to put an unreliable engine in the Tomcat when they already had an unreliable engine of their own  flying in the Tomcat, so their interest in the F401 petered out.  They didn't like the TF30 and had to  accept significant performance shortfalls, but this would allow them to keep the program going. 

Offline Flyaway

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #212 on: March 19, 2018, 01:53:12 pm »
F-15s could at China’s doorstep as Taiwan might be leasing them

This is where this is relevant to this thread.

Quote
The proposal is to lease aircraft that still have half of their lifespan remaining and upgrade them with new mission computers and fire control radars.

http://alert5.com/2018/03/20/f-15s-at-chinas-doorstep-as-taiwan-could-be-leasing-them/

Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #213 on: March 19, 2018, 03:51:08 pm »
The the F-22 buy severely cut, I'd think we'd need every F-15 that can fly.  And we're going to lease them?  ???
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Offline NeilChapman

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #214 on: March 19, 2018, 09:30:53 pm »
The the F-22 buy severely cut, I'd think we'd need every F-15 that can fly.  And we're going to lease them?  ???

1000 nmi combat radius, 65000k foot ceiling, mach 2.5 beast on the PRC's doorstep?  Uhhh, yea. 

So long as they use them as expected.  It's a lease.  You can specify the terms any way you want.  This has possibilities. 

Besides, the USAF wants lot's of F-35A's.  Timing is good with full rate production expected in the next couple of years.  It will take that long to make the F-15 deal work.

More complete article...

http://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/19411/the-united-states-could-offer-taiwan-leased-f-15c-eagles-according-to-report

It will be interesting to see what package they'll get. 




Offline Airplane

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #215 on: March 20, 2018, 09:01:05 am »
The the F-22 buy severely cut, I'd think we'd need every F-15 that can fly.  And we're going to lease them?  ???

1000 nmi combat radius, 65000k foot ceiling, mach 2.5 beast on the PRC's doorstep?  Uhhh, yea. 

So long as they use them as expected.  It's a lease.  You can specify the terms any way you want.  This has possibilities. 

Besides, the USAF wants lot's of F-35A's.  Timing is good with full rate production expected in the next couple of years.  It will take that long to make the F-15 deal work.

More complete article...

http://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/19411/the-united-states-could-offer-taiwan-leased-f-15c-eagles-according-to-report

It will be interesting to see what package they'll get.

Precisely. The F-35S will be rolling off the line at 40-50 per year. 1 F35 = 1 F15 even with reduced missile load because of LO and SA.

On a side note, I would have loved to see the F-15SE built at 24/year for until PCA/NGAD begins LRIP to make up for the truncated F-22 production. That would have been hands down the single best Gen 4/4.5 fighter in the skies. More than a match for poor Flanker and Fulcrum. So many wasted opportunities over the last 20 years.... Instead we're giving the Saudi's the most advanced Eagle ever built (84).
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Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #216 on: March 20, 2018, 09:23:15 am »
The the F-22 buy severely cut, I'd think we'd need every F-15 that can fly.  And we're going to lease them?  ???

1000 nmi combat radius, 65000k foot ceiling, mach 2.5 beast on the PRC's doorstep?  Uhhh, yea. 

Unless they're in REALLY hard shelters they'll last about 2 minutes against the PLA's missile force. Think BLU-109s hitting shelters at missile speed.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DF-15

« Last Edit: March 20, 2018, 09:25:42 am by sferrin »
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Offline Ainen

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #217 on: March 20, 2018, 10:35:38 am »
The the F-22 buy severely cut, I'd think we'd need every F-15 that can fly.  And we're going to lease them?  ???

1000 nmi combat radius, 65000k foot ceiling, mach 2.5 beast on the PRC's doorstep?  Uhhh, yea. 

Unless they're in REALLY hard shelters they'll last about 2 minutes against the PLA's missile force. Think BLU-109s hitting shelters at missile speed.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DF-15

Aircraft can be dispersed , and so on.
PLA's missile force isn't  anything new, really.


Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #218 on: March 20, 2018, 10:45:59 am »
Aircraft can be dispersed , and so on.

They still need runways, and if they're dispersed they aren't going to be protected.

PLA's missile force isn't  anything new, really.

It is, really.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #219 on: March 20, 2018, 02:40:49 pm »
The the F-22 buy severely cut, I'd think we'd need every F-15 that can fly.  And we're going to lease them?  ???

The plan calls for using 100 F-15C and a handful of F-15D fighters currently in the boneyard.

Offline marauder2048

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #220 on: March 20, 2018, 03:22:21 pm »
The the F-22 buy severely cut, I'd think we'd need every F-15 that can fly.  And we're going to lease them?  ???

The plan calls for using 100 F-15C and a handful of F-15D fighters currently in the boneyard.

That sounds like the combat-coded ANG F-15C fleet.

Offline Colonial-Marine

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #221 on: March 20, 2018, 05:15:48 pm »
PLA's missile force isn't  anything new, really.
It is, really.
Serious question here, what is "new" about it compared to the very large ballistic missile force the Soviet Union had? At least today we have some limited ability to counter such missiles thanks to PAC-3 and THAAD, although I don't think Taiwan has been cleared to buy either.

Admittedly there are probably far less spare airfields to go around on small Pacific islands than in West Germany which presents a problem.
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Offline Blitzo

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #222 on: March 20, 2018, 05:31:57 pm »
F-15s could at China’s doorstep as Taiwan might be leasing them

This is where this is relevant to this thread.

Quote
The proposal is to lease aircraft that still have half of their lifespan remaining and upgrade them with new mission computers and fire control radars.

http://alert5.com/2018/03/20/f-15s-at-chinas-doorstep-as-taiwan-could-be-leasing-them/

If ROCAF have to fork out to refit them and lease them, PLAAF are probably secretly begging their counterparts across the strait to buy F-15s.

Less money for buying large amounts of highly mobile SAMs...

Offline SpudmanWP

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #223 on: March 20, 2018, 06:00:24 pm »
1 F35 = 1 F15 even with reduced missile load because of LO and SA.

Try 1 F-35 = 4 F-15Cs (at least)

Remember the 24+:1 ratio at Red Flag?
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Offline Airplane

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #224 on: March 20, 2018, 06:29:22 pm »
1 F35 = 1 F15 even with reduced missile load because of LO and SA.

Try 1 F-35 = 4 F-15Cs (at least)

Remember the 24+:1 ratio at Red Flag?

I know all about red flag, and it doesn't have the latest soviet and Chinese stuff that will ne in the field in another dozen years. At minimum its safe to say a 1 to 1 replacement. 1 35 with 4 aims cannot equal 4 15s. Math alone will tell you its not possible. What's the 35 going to do after launching 4 aims at an on average 3 targets? Is it going to approach to wvr AND gun the others to death? It can't even do that because of the MINUSCULE number of rounds

Its going to launch its 4 120s at an average of 3 bogeys and then she has shot her load and is just burning gas at that point.

Unlike red flag it isn't going back to home plate and starting over again with anew hypothetical missile load as is done in some exercises.
« Last Edit: March 20, 2018, 06:34:36 pm by Airplane »
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Offline SpudmanWP

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #225 on: March 20, 2018, 07:47:04 pm »
You missed the point.

When F-35s go up against 4th gen Red Flag (or other LFEs) assets, they do much better than said 4th gen assets. Their VLO airframes let them disengage after running out of AAMs & cannon rounds to fight another day.  I don't think 1 F35 could replace 24+ F-15s, which is why I only said 1:4.

Life is not a video game.  IRL pilots do not fight to the last man after seeing 20%, 30%, 40%, 50% of their allies blow up without having a clue of where the enemy is.  They turn around and GTFO ASAP.
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Offline Ainen

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #226 on: March 20, 2018, 10:43:35 pm »
It is, really.
Compared to Soviet capability in the same field(even just in ballistic Missiles), it's unremarkable.
Even if conventional, and WW3 planners always had to realistically account for a much more disruptive payload option.

Fundamentally, airfield network being fully within reach and under constant threat (one way or another)  is an often emerging feature since at least ww2. Options are many, and they're still as effective, if your fighter was designed for it.
F-15 certainly belong to fighters built with ww3 in mind.

Offline Blitzo

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #227 on: March 20, 2018, 11:08:29 pm »
It is, really.
Compared to Soviet capability in the same field(even just in ballistic Missiles), it's unremarkable.
Even if conventional, and WW3 planners always had to realistically account for a much more disruptive payload option.

Fundamentally, airfield network being fully within reach and under constant threat (one way or another)  is an often emerging feature since at least ww2. Options are many, and they're still as effective, if your fighter was designed for it.
F-15 certainly belong to fighters built with ww3 in mind.

I think F-15 and F-22 that succeeded it were built primarily with the European theater in mind when thinking about the threat to airfields, vs say the availability of airfields in the western Pacific.

Offline NeilChapman

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #228 on: March 21, 2018, 12:01:14 am »
The the F-22 buy severely cut, I'd think we'd need every F-15 that can fly.  And we're going to lease them?  ???

1000 nmi combat radius, 65000k foot ceiling, mach 2.5 beast on the PRC's doorstep?  Uhhh, yea. 

Unless they're in REALLY hard shelters they'll last about 2 minutes against the PLA's missile force. Think BLU-109s hitting shelters at missile speed.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DF-15


Then perhaps the ROCAF needs to keep them on alert - practicing strikes against PRC and recovering to alternate locations. 

ROC is in a tough spot to be sure.  Doesn't mean they shouldn't be allowed to defend themselves and their  liberty in whatever way they see fit.


Offline Blitzo

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #229 on: March 21, 2018, 12:36:35 am »
The the F-22 buy severely cut, I'd think we'd need every F-15 that can fly.  And we're going to lease them?  ???

1000 nmi combat radius, 65000k foot ceiling, mach 2.5 beast on the PRC's doorstep?  Uhhh, yea. 

Unless they're in REALLY hard shelters they'll last about 2 minutes against the PLA's missile force. Think BLU-109s hitting shelters at missile speed.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DF-15


Then perhaps the ROCAF needs to keep them on alert - practicing strikes against PRC and recovering to alternate locations. 

ROC is in a tough spot to be sure.  Doesn't mean they shouldn't be allowed to defend themselves and their  liberty in whatever way they see fit.

ROCAF has been inducted a few stand off range powered weapons intended for offensive strikes, and have also practiced using highways as runways for their fighters as well.

But at a system of systems level, I think it is increasingly becoming apparent that continuing to seek an air force with a conventional structure heavy on fighter aircraft emphasizing A2A and A2G capability would be somewhat playing into the PLA's hands.

The balance of of strategic depth, as well as quality of weapons systems and especially quantity of weapons systems, all favour the PLA either slightly or overwhelmingly. The volume and rate of damage each side can inflict on the other, as well as the volume and rate of damage each side can endure, is not one which favours the ROC military much at all.
As in any confrontation, training, morale are potential wildcards, but even these are no longer the safe advantages that ROC could once safely assume to hold, say in the 1990s.



As for ROCAF leasing F-15s -- in the end it comes down to opportunity cost. Are they better off modernizing and leasing X number of F-15s, or are they better off using that same amount of money elsewhere, like buying more SAMs etc?

Offline totoro

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #230 on: March 21, 2018, 01:11:04 am »
It's all about mission goal and potential disparity between initial intelligence data and actual data.

If the mission for F15 attacking is to bomb a base where F35 are stationed, and if f15's side has intelligence that is believed to be true-  the F15 side will attack only if it think it has enough forces to fight through. And if the intelligence happens to be fairly correct, then even if a package of F15s attacking are ambushed by intercepting F35 to such a degree that F15s don't ever see their attackers - the remaining F15s will likely NOT turn around but will be counting with those losses and carry on, reach the F35 base and bomb it.

Some people will run away, some will not. Those that run will get court-martialed. (since mission was approved knowing full well there would be losses) Some civilians would run, some would not. With trained pilots, the percentage of those running away would be smaller.

Of course this is very much a simplified situation depicted. There would be countless other variables involved on both sides, so it's next to impossible to theretize about it. Which is why simplified situation is only one worth talking about.

F35 was tailor made for US air forces, their numbers and US economy. US knows it will enjoy not just the technological edge of F35 but also numerical edge against any other enemy for the next few decades. If some other, smaller, air force uses them and for whatever reason can't enjoy any allied help, and finds itself outnumbered enough - those f35s may lose.

Basically, F35 will not achieve a victory in almost any situation on its own. But compared to a legacy fighting force, the new force equipped with *same or smilar* number of F35s will perform the same mission with less losses.   
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Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #231 on: March 21, 2018, 05:09:55 am »
It is, really.
Compared to Soviet capability in the same field(even just in ballistic Missiles), it's unremarkable.

Wow.  Exactly which conventionally armed, terminally guided, missiles did the USSR field?  Scaleboard? Scarab? Oka?  None were accurate enough.  None were terminally guided.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2018, 05:33:05 am by sferrin »
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Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #232 on: March 21, 2018, 05:11:28 am »
Doesn't mean they shouldn't be allowed to defend themselves and their  liberty in whatever way they see fit.

Did somebody say they shouldn't?
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Offline SpudmanWP

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #233 on: March 21, 2018, 07:15:27 am »
If the mission for F15 attacking is to bomb a base where F35 are stationed

Thanks for clarifying the scenario.   Now that we are talking about a defensive mission, the F-35 is in an even better position to succeed.  There is a tactic called "shooter is not the spotter" aka "deep magazine".  The US has for a long time been working on connecting everything on the battlefield into a unified network of data.  The US has also demonstrated multiple times the ability to detect a target over the horizon with an F-35, launch a SAM based on that networked data, update the SAM with data from the F-35 directly, and manage the endgame engagement directly from the F-35.  Since we are talking a defensive action, the F-35 would have that "deep magazine" of SAMs to draw on and could continue to decimate the attacking forces long after they run out of their own missiles.  Since we are talking a bombing mission by the F-15s, they would be easy pickings for the F-35s to take out with their guns.

This is of course all moot after SACM comes online  ::)
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Offline Blitzo

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #234 on: March 21, 2018, 05:29:47 pm »
If the mission for F15 attacking is to bomb a base where F35 are stationed

Thanks for clarifying the scenario.   Now that we are talking about a defensive mission, the F-35 is in an even better position to succeed.  There is a tactic called "shooter is not the spotter" aka "deep magazine".  The US has for a long time been working on connecting everything on the battlefield into a unified network of data.  The US has also demonstrated multiple times the ability to detect a target over the horizon with an F-35, launch a SAM based on that networked data, update the SAM with data from the F-35 directly, and manage the endgame engagement directly from the F-35.  Since we are talking a defensive action, the F-35 would have that "deep magazine" of SAMs to draw on and could continue to decimate the attacking forces long after they run out of their own missiles.  Since we are talking a bombing mission by the F-15s, they would be easy pickings for the F-35s to take out with their guns.

That of course, is for a situation where the USAF (or perhaps a similarly well networked and armed air force that may emerge in the foreseeable future) is the one defending, rather than another nation's air forces that is operating with F-35 and which may lack either the networked systems to make use of the F-35's sensors and datalinks, and/or lacking the "deep magazine" to fire in the first place.

Offline Airplane

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #235 on: March 21, 2018, 06:07:59 pm »
Precisely on two accounts.

The importance of magazine size cannot be understated. The 35 has 4 missiles. Considering missile failures and looking for guarantied kills, you're looking at 3 boogies per 35. That's it. In some cases only 2.

Sure throw some crap under the wings and you've got a gen 4.5 fighter with good SA.

The 35 is the wrong horse for the wrong rodeo in a near peer shooting match.

36k ft, M.85 4 aims. Its outclassed by everything new our adversaries are fielding. It remains to be seen how many 57s get built. But its not the Russians that would risk war. The Chinese would do so over north Korea.

You can't even evaluate its stealth features factually unless you're part of the program.

But back to point its a fine one to one replacement for the eagle... It does a lot better than the eagle but my oh my only 4 aams. Go ahead lease the beagles away. We don't need them if we get enough 35s.

I don't hate the 35, its just being forced to be something it was never meant to be.
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Offline SpudmanWP

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #236 on: March 21, 2018, 06:22:44 pm »
Adding the F-35 to one's own country's IADS is a relatively simple thing to do and some are already doing it.  Northrop Grumman even makes a 50lb data terminal that acts as a gateway that outputs standard J-Type messages.  Turkey has already stated that they want to add their new Russian S-300 system into the IADS to receive data from the F-35 and the UK has already talked about getting F-35 data into their Carrier's network.  Considering many US allies already operate Aegis cruisers, adding F-35 datalinks are a no-brainer.

Don't forget that many Allies have more flexible defense plans since they do not have to worry about large projects.
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Offline NeilChapman

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #237 on: March 21, 2018, 06:57:59 pm »
Doesn't mean they shouldn't be allowed to defend themselves and their  liberty in whatever way they see fit.

Did somebody say they shouldn't?

Not directly.  The direction from the thread is... 

1.  US needs airframes. Leasing them to Taiwan is a bad idea.
2.  PLA has an overwhelming missile force.  Leasing F15's to Taiwan is a bad idea.

Conclusion?  Leasing F-15's to Taiwan is a waste of an F-15.   

The PRC is making exceptional changes to the threat level in the ROC and the region.  The PRC feels very bold in their push on Japan, Korea and the PI to break out of the first island chain.  So much so that Japan is moving quickly to create amphibious forces and pushing defensive systems all the way down to Yonaguni Island.

F-15's, while an older air superiority platform is a beast.  It brings a transformational shift in capability.   Well handled and equipped, F-15's could introduce a level of uncertainty into the PRC's planning calculus.  I would hope that the plan is for ROC pilots to train in the US prior to moving to this platform.  Perhaps even on a regular basis.  It's important for them to get time integrating into this new system.

I tend to think that F-15's with appropriate radar, munitions, EW systems, information sharing, allies and tactics will give the PRC an additional reason to pause before crossing the strait or continuing raise the threat level on the island.  Especially if the ROC is willing to defend themselves long enough for assistance to arrive.  The pain point for the PRC will be that much higher.

That assistance will come quicker if the ROC is integrated into US theater defensive systems - sharing information as appropriate.

If the PRC decides to cross the strait, it will do so.  The repercussions for Taiwan will be devastating.  It will hurt the US economically and politically as well.  If the little green men are in the ROC already will the US be able to extricate them without massive civilian casualities?  It will be better that they never attempt to do so.   

I don't believe that leasing F-15's to Taiwan is a waste of an F-15.




** Edited to fix SNAFU **

Thx B



« Last Edit: March 21, 2018, 08:22:03 pm by NeilChapman »

Offline Blitzo

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #238 on: March 21, 2018, 07:39:02 pm »
Doesn't mean they shouldn't be allowed to defend themselves and their  liberty in whatever way they see fit.

Did somebody say they shouldn't?

Not directly.  The direction from the thread is... 

1.  US needs airframes. Leasing them to Taiwan is a bad idea.
2.  PLA has an overwhelming missile force.  Leasing F15's to Taiwan is a bad idea.

Conclusion?  Leasing F-15's to Taiwan is a waste of an F-15.   

The PRC is making exceptional changes to the threat level in the ROK and the region.  The PRC feels very bold in their push on Japan, Korea and the PI to break out of the first island chain.  So much so that Japan is moving quickly to create amphibious forces and pushing defensive systems all the way down to Yonaguni Island.

F-15's, while an older air superiority platform is a beast.  It brings a transformational shift in capability.   Well handled and equipped, F-15's could introduce a level of uncertainty into the PRC's planning calculus.  I would hope that the plan is for ROK pilots to train in the US prior to moving to this platform.  Perhaps even on a regular basis.  It's important for them to get time integrating into this new system.

I tend to think that F-15's with appropriate radar, munitions, EW systems, information sharing, allies and tactics will give the PRC an additional reason to pause before crossing the strait or continuing raise the threat level on the island.  Especially if the ROC is willing to defend themselves long enough for assistance to arrive.  The pain point for the PRC will be that much higher.

That assistance will come quicker if the ROK is integrated into US theater defensive systems - sharing information as appropriate.

If the PRC decides to cross the strait, it will do so.  The repercussions for Taiwan will be devastating.  It will hurt the US economically and politically as well.  If the little green men are in the ROC already will the US be able to extricate them without massive civilian casualities?  It will be better that they never attempt to do so.   

I don't believe that leasing F-15's to Taiwan is a waste of an F-15.


I know you mean to write "ROC" in every instance, but you use "ROK" a few times  ;D

In any case, I don't think the sferrin's point is about whether the US is willing to provide assistance to Taiwan, but more about whether pursuing F-15s are the best way for the ROC military to try and deter China.


I don't think anyone doubts the F-15 is a potent fighter aircraft, especially if it is modernized... but ROC's military budget is not exactly exhaustive, and how survivable are ROC airfields and fighters expected to be in the opening phases of a Taiwan contingency, in a manner where the very capable F-15s and their well trained crews have an opportunity to get up in the air to begin with?


In any case, it looks like the ROCAF are not completely brainless and are denying they want F-15s.
http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/archives/2018/03/21/2003689723

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #239 on: March 21, 2018, 09:04:17 pm »

1.  I know you mean to write "ROC" in every instance, but you use "ROK" a few times  ;D

2.  In any case, I don't think the sferrin's point is about whether the US is willing to provide assistance to Taiwan, but more about whether pursuing F-15s are the best way for the ROC military to try and deter China.


I don't think anyone doubts the F-15 is a potent fighter aircraft, especially if it is modernized... but ROC's military budget is not exactly exhaustive, and how survivable are ROC airfields and fighters expected to be in the opening phases of a Taiwan contingency, in a manner where the very capable F-15s and their well trained crews have an opportunity to get up in the air to begin with?


3.  In any case, it looks like the ROCAF are not completely brainless and are denying they want F-15s.
http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/archives/2018/03/21/2003689723

1.  Thx - edited in the fixes.

2.  I got what he meant.  The PRC would like to overwhelm the ROC without firing a shot.  Lobbing missiles into your "wayward" brothers is not their first choice - regardless the rhetoric.  They want to make it "inevitable" so that no one contests their actions.  Raising the stakes is important because it's what the PRC fears most - pushback.

For deterrence, I suspect F-15's would help in interdiction and suppression of PRC pressure tactics prior to an invasion attempt.  There are ways to move jets around such that they are not such an easy target.  In fact, it's probably incumbent on their AF to get used to moving their squadrons around.

3.  I don't read the article that way.  They're denying the US offered them, not that they don't want them.



Offline Blitzo

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #240 on: March 21, 2018, 09:45:49 pm »
2.  I got what he meant.  The PRC would like to overwhelm the ROC without firing a shot.  Lobbing missiles into your "wayward" brothers is not their first choice - regardless the rhetoric.  They want to make it "inevitable" so that no one contests their actions.  Raising the stakes is important because it's what the PRC fears most - pushback.

For deterrence, I suspect F-15's would help in interdiction and suppression of PRC pressure tactics prior to an invasion attempt.  There are ways to move jets around such that they are not such an easy target.  In fact, it's probably incumbent on their AF to get used to moving their squadrons around.

What do you envision as PRC "pressure tactics" before an invasion attempt occurs? And what do you envision as "interdiction and suppression"?

Because what we're really talking about is when the first shot is fired in anger.


Any PRC invasion (i.e.: amphibious landing) will occur after a high intensity ballistic missile, cruise missile, ALCM bombardment alongside SEAD, DEAD, and CAP in the Taiwan strait to target any ROCAF fighters that make it into the air.


If a shot is fired in anger by China, that will likely be the first wave.


Chinese "pressure tactics" might involve flying some bombers and fighters around Taiwan, but those would not involve firing shots at anyone. And whether ROCAF has F-15s or not won't really "deter" the PLA from flying those aircraft around Taiwan, but it might mean they are able to escort the PLA aircraft for longer (especially on Taiwan's eastern side) and take more pictures of them...

... however I cannot see how F-15s would assist in deterring or changing the overall balance of power, in particular in regards to the first wave of PLA bombardment.

Offline Ainen

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #241 on: March 21, 2018, 11:28:30 pm »
Wow.  Exactly which conventionally armed, terminally guided, missiles did the USSR field?  Scaleboard? Scarab? Oka?  None were accurate enough.  None were terminally guided.
Not accurate enough? Against airfields?
But they were, and it was a major concern through whole 1970s, 1980s and on.

Furthermore, as I said earlier - through the whole CW NATO had first use policy, so retaliatory use was to be expected.

Nevertheless, it's not an insolvable problem. Air capability is far too important to give it up just because opponent does whatever he can to deny it to you.

Offline Jeb

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #242 on: March 22, 2018, 07:18:36 am »
Turkey has already stated that they want to add their new Russian S-300 system into the IADS to receive data from the F-35

 :o  Wow, think of that...imagine if we figured out how an F-35 could break into an adversary's S-series SAM datalink and retask an inbound SAM to a target that the F-35 designated (like the launch site?).

Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #243 on: March 22, 2018, 07:26:19 am »
Wow.  Exactly which conventionally armed, terminally guided, missiles did the USSR field?  Scaleboard? Scarab? Oka?  None were accurate enough.  None were terminally guided.
Not accurate enough? Against airfields?

Against individual HASs.
 
But they were, and it was a major concern through whole 1970s, 1980s and on.

Yeah, with nukes not conventional warheads. So no, the mighty USSR didn't field anything comparable to what China has pointed at Taiwan today.
"DARPA Hard"  It ain't what it use to be.

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #244 on: March 22, 2018, 06:44:28 pm »
Yeah, with nukes not conventional warheads. So no, the mighty USSR didn't field anything comparable to what China has pointed at Taiwan today.
Last I knew the Soviets/Russians used to (and probably still do) have plenty of conventional warheads for their ballistic missiles. They'd start smashing airbases from the very start even without permission to go nuclear.
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Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #245 on: March 22, 2018, 08:46:24 pm »
Yeah, with nukes not conventional warheads. So no, the mighty USSR didn't field anything comparable to what China has pointed at Taiwan today.
Last I knew the Soviets/Russians used to (and probably still do) have plenty of conventional warheads for their ballistic missiles. They'd start smashing airbases from the very start even without permission to go nuclear.

Go read what we've been talking about.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2018, 05:03:36 am by sferrin »
"DARPA Hard"  It ain't what it use to be.

Offline Colonial-Marine

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #246 on: March 25, 2018, 05:08:07 pm »
I have been, yet I don't see a huge difference between demolishing individual hardened aircraft shelters thanks to better terminal guidance or simply rendering an airbase non-functional through greater volume of less precise missiles.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #247 on: March 25, 2018, 06:29:34 pm »
I have been, yet I don't see a huge difference between demolishing individual hardened aircraft shelters thanks to better terminal guidance or simply rendering an airbase non-functional through greater volume of less precise missiles.

Demolishing individual hardened shelters allows destruction of the aircraft themselves, in addition to making an airbase non-functional through targeting both chokepoints in the runway, but also targeting important sites on the airbase, like fuel, ammunition structures, air control tower, etc.

Offline Moose

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #248 on: July 18, 2018, 05:22:01 pm »
The return of new-Eagle production returns, as Boeing pitches F-15X.

Offline SpudmanWP

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #249 on: July 18, 2018, 05:33:45 pm »
That is just Boeing desperation. 

The F-35A costs less to build, fly and upgrade than the F-15X.  It has beaten the F-15E in exercises too.  To existing F-35 customers, new-build F-15X makes no operational, fiscal, or tactical sense,
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #250 on: July 18, 2018, 05:41:26 pm »
The return of new-Eagle production returns, as Boeing pitches F-15X.

We should be buying new beagles as fast as Boeing can build them... 36 annually until PCA enters service. We should have been buying advanced eagles alongside the 22 production years when it became evident the USAF was not going to get the required 381.
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Offline SpudmanWP

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #251 on: July 18, 2018, 05:54:58 pm »
Why given that F-35A is cheaper & better?
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Offline Sundog

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #252 on: July 18, 2018, 09:50:07 pm »
It has beaten the F-15E in exercises too. 

Has the F-15E beaten the F-35 in combat? As that argument is something of a non-sequitur at the moment, as there are other aircraft that have beaten the F-15E in combat as well.

Offline SpudmanWP

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #253 on: July 18, 2018, 10:15:09 pm »
Has the F-22 beat anything in A2A combat?

No.. yet nobody doubts it's A2A prowess.
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Offline NeilChapman

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #254 on: July 18, 2018, 10:27:59 pm »
Why given that F-35A is cheaper & better?

Maybe 'better' is not the criteria.  Replacement rate may be important.
Perhaps because you can't get F-35's fast enough.  Full production is a way's off and that will be 15-17 per month.
As an aside, Boeing is only producing 2 F-18's per month and won't ramp up production rate for several more years.  Hard to get fast jet quantities where you want them with such low production rates.
F-15 is a known article.  Still a fantastic airplane. Great mods available. Less expensive to operate than an F-35.  New weapons and radar on a Mach II airplane might make it a nice, big, missile truck.  Would be nice to consider new capability for refueling from either AF or Navy's coming MQ-25.

US has F-15, F-16, F-18, F-22 and F-35.  One could make a good case to trim the mix.  Especially with the rapid growth in overall personnel costs.  Less platforms, less complication for maintainers and supply.  If PCA progress is moving along then perhaps it would make sense to dump the F-15C.  F-16's w/mods will jump from 8k to 12k hour service lives.  Upgrade F-16's instead.  But if India buys F-16's then production moves to India.  That might make you want to keep F-15 production going if PCA is behind.

Personally, I wouldn't expect the USAF to purchase new F-15's unless...on the off chance India selects F-16 and US wants to maintain another production line.

It might make more sense to accelerate PCA while pushing LM to increase F-35 production capacity and continue with NGJ and other upgraded munitions.

Offline SpudmanWP

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #255 on: July 18, 2018, 10:40:34 pm »
The F-35 is coming off the line MUCH faster than the F-15 ever can.  It's also cheaper to fly (ie less CPFH) than the F-15E, let alone the F-15X.  Who is going to pay the Billions to develop the "X" version?  Don't forget to add those costs.
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Offline Airplane

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #256 on: July 20, 2018, 09:40:49 am »
It has beaten the F-15E in exercises too. 

Has the F-15E beaten the F-35 in combat? As that argument is something of a non-sequitur at the moment, as there are other aircraft that have beaten the F-15E in combat as well.

Anyone can defeat anyone on any given day of the week.

An F-15C/E with JHMCS and HOBS could defeat an F-35 in close range combat. Not all fighting is possible to do at arms length BVR. There are situations where opponents can be WVR. I would even argue the F-15E to be better than a F-15C because of 2 sets of eyes and maintaining SA while engaging WVR.
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Offline bobbymike

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #257 on: July 23, 2018, 06:37:02 am »
F-15SA construction time lapse. Usually only seeing the finished product or still shots from the factory floor, you really forget (or at least I do) how incredibly complex these machines are.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=279&v=AVkmSvHHwVE
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Offline bobbymike

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #258 on: August 02, 2018, 04:01:35 pm »
http://aviationweek.com/defense/why-israelis-want-larger-more-modern-f-15-fleet

Quote
The Israeli Air Force is in the middle of a major effort to adapt its capabilities for the future, oriented to counter its two immediate enemies—Syria, which is backed by the Iranians and Iran itself. That is leading the service to prioritize an upgrade and expansion of its Boeing F-15 fleet.

Earlier this year, Israel publicly confirmed for the first time that in 2007 it had carried out a strike against a nuclear reactor in Syria, built with North Korea’s help, that could have produced fuel for nuclear weapons.

The attack managed to blind Syrian sensors without that country’s knowledge. Syria does not have an operational air force that can confront Israel’s, but there is no such mismatch with Iran, located nearly 1,000 mi. away from Israel.
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Online LowObservable

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #259 on: August 04, 2018, 06:51:06 am »
Who is going to pay the Billions to develop the "X" version?

Saudi and Qatar have already done so. The accounts of the X all seem to suggest that it's an SA/QA variant - developed and on a hot production line - with a single-seat cockpit. Logistics and training for the SA/QA are being/will be extensively supported from the US, so introductory costs will be minimal.

Meanwhile, I await an explanation of how dumb the Israelis are for buying more F-15s.

The F-35 and the advanced F-15 are good at different things. Israel has a concept called "mass precision" which depends on carrying large numbers of Israeli-developed standoff weapons, along with the multiband Litening 5 targeting pod. If it is correct that the USAF is looking at single-seat F-15s to replace C/Ds, an obvious motivation is the fighter's ability to carry a large missile loadout while retaining high performance in A2A.


Offline sferrin

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #260 on: August 04, 2018, 09:10:44 am »
Who is going to pay the Billions to develop the "X" version?

Saudi and Qatar have already done so. The accounts of the X all seem to suggest that it's an SA/QA variant - developed and on a hot production line - with a single-seat cockpit. Logistics and training for the SA/QA are being/will be extensively supported from the US, so introductory costs will be minimal.

Meanwhile, I await an explanation of how dumb the Israelis are for buying more F-15s.

The F-35 and the advanced F-15 are good at different things. Israel has a concept called "mass precision" which depends on carrying large numbers of Israeli-developed standoff weapons, along with the multiband Litening 5 targeting pod. If it is correct that the USAF is looking at single-seat F-15s to replace C/Ds, an obvious motivation is the fighter's ability to carry a large missile loadout while retaining high performance in A2A.

I don't know why anybody would think it "dumb".  The F-15 can do things like this:

"DARPA Hard"  It ain't what it use to be.

Offline marauder2048

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #261 on: August 04, 2018, 07:51:45 pm »
Israel is a country increasingly on the short-end of the salvo competition, with no strategic depth
and vulnerable air bases. 

Its standoff capability is not constrained by the INF treaty, but it looks to buy a last gen, big twin fast jet
with uncertain survivability (e.g. Yemen) and whose main utility in the strike role depends
on relatively long, intact runways, relatively large munitions bunkers and special handling equipment.

If not dumb it's at least questionable.

For the USAF, the "X" might be useful in the counter cruise-missile role or if the
Air Force got serious about an airborne weapons layer for ABM a la ALHTK.

So maybe something the ANG could get congressional set-asides for...

Offline Airplane

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #262 on: August 05, 2018, 06:16:38 pm »
Sometimes all that is needed is a US aircraft with USAF painted on it. The X fills that role and is more than a credible threat to the thousands of non-5th gen AC around the globe. That frees up the minuscule Raptor fleet for the highest threat environments. The X is something that the USAF should not have been put in a position to consider it...
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #263 on: December 21, 2018, 06:48:24 pm »
Pentagon To Request $1.2 Billion for New Boeing F-15 Fighters


Quote
The Pentagon is planning to request $1.2 billion for 12 Boeing F-15 X fighter aircraft—the newest version of the decades-old jet—in its fiscal year 2020 budget request, according to two people familiar with the decision who asked not to be named because it’s not yet official.

The decision to buy the newest kind of F-15 aircraft, so far only sold to U.S. allies, comes from the Pentagon’s top leadership, including with some prodding from Deputy Secretary of Defense Pat Shanahan, and not the Air Force, which would be flying the planes, the two people said. Shanahan, a former Boeing Co. executive, recused himself from any decisions related to Boeing when he was confirmed by the Senate.
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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #264 on: December 22, 2018, 06:06:05 pm »
Pentagon To Request $1.2 Billion for New Boeing F-15 Fighters


Quote
The Pentagon is planning to request $1.2 billion for 12 Boeing F-15 X fighter aircraft—the newest version of the decades-old jet—in its fiscal year 2020 budget request, according to two people familiar with the decision who asked not to be named because it’s not yet official.

The decision to buy the newest kind of F-15 aircraft, so far only sold to U.S. allies, comes from the Pentagon’s top leadership, including with some prodding from Deputy Secretary of Defense Pat Shanahan, and not the Air Force, which would be flying the planes, the two people said. Shanahan, a former Boeing Co. executive, recused himself from any decisions related to Boeing when he was confirmed by the Senate.

Considering Lockheed cannot deliver enough 35s to revitalize the USAFs aging fleet, the USAF has to inject new blood into the fleet. This is the only way to do it. 55 billion to build another 180 raptors isn't viable as it would steel the thunder from PCA. 265 over 8 years would be good.
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Offline SpudmanWP

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #265 on: December 22, 2018, 07:49:48 pm »
The USAF did not ask for the F-15X, it's a corporate welfare buy instigated by Boeing employees who also happen to be moonlighting at the Pentagon.

LM is completely capable of increasing the F-35's produced.  Then increased it by 30% in 2018 and are going for a 40% boost in 2019.
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Online LowObservable

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #266 on: December 23, 2018, 08:15:03 am »
If you're concerned about Russia renewing its nuclear forces, including bombers and cruise missiles, you might want something with more range and load-out than the alternative.

Also, you might consider a no-fly-zone scenario, or a similar operation, where even if you did have an LO aircraft with persistence and payload close to an F-15, you'd fly it with reflectors so that the Almaz-Antey tech support crews on the other side couldn't get any naughty ideas.

And sources notwithstanding, the USAF has been considering a similar move, off and on, for three years.

Offline jsport

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #267 on: December 23, 2018, 09:22:27 am »
Aircraft that can destroy more than 5 vehicles per sortie (F-35 according the Rand A-10C replacement study) would be useful and F-15 would seem to fit the bill.   

...believe there is reason the AF will not be heading up the JCS this coming term.

Likewise the Boeing industrial base argument remains.

https://www.rand.org/pubs/research_reports/RR1724z1.html

'The need to strike a variety of targets creates a need to carry a diverse set of weapons. The need for a wide variety of munitions implies carriage of a large number of weapons, regardless of the number of targets. In highly intense cases, we found that a loadout sufficient to kill two armored targets per sortie was a minimum capability, with a preferred capacity closer to five kills per sortie (is this a joke). Laser-guided rockets with armor-piercing warheads could be a highly effective addition to the force."
« Last Edit: December 23, 2018, 09:51:09 am by jsport »

Online bring_it_on

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #268 on: December 23, 2018, 10:00:30 am »
I wonder whether this move will also lead to an acceleration to the LREW and bring back the ALHTK concepts with PAC-3 or NCADE.

Edit: Saw this later...



For the USAF, the "X" might be useful in the counter cruise-missile role or if the
Air Force got serious about an airborne weapons layer for ABM a la ALHTK.

So maybe something the ANG could get congressional set-asides for...

This could be an explanation why this move, if the report is to be believed, seems to have originated (at least in its most latest incarnation) at the OSD.
« Last Edit: December 23, 2018, 11:06:03 am by bring_it_on »
Old radar types never die; they just phased array - Unknown

Offline Airplane

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #269 on: December 23, 2018, 05:12:31 pm »
I wonder whether this move will also lead to an acceleration to the LREW and bring back the ALHTK concepts with PAC-3 or NCADE.

Edit: Saw this later...



For the USAF, the "X" might be useful in the counter cruise-missile role or if the
Air Force got serious about an airborne weapons layer for ABM a la ALHTK.

So maybe something the ANG could get congressional set-asides for...

This could be an explanation why this move, if the report is to be believed, seems to have originated (at least in its most latest incarnation) at the OSD.

I've been thinking perhaps a carrier for a HVM... No centerline on the 35s. Remember asat? Still, the USAF needs new airframes, and lack of stealth aside, it would be a good system. Lets see how many stealth fighters china fields! We already know the Russian situation.
"The test of success is not what you do when your on top. Success is how high you bounce when you hit bottom.”
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Online bring_it_on

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #270 on: December 23, 2018, 05:40:27 pm »
I don't think a lack of a supply of airframes is the main concern here. There is some slack in the F-35 production and the Air-Force could always ramp its procurement up to 80 a year earlier and get additional tails faster. That said, as others have opined there is likely a mission need which the F-15X more than amply meets and may in fact be better suited for particularly when the cost of simply swapping out F-15's with some of the ANG squadrons are concerned. There are probably also industrial base reasons to keep boeing in the game given that they deliver all of Qatar's F-15's by late 2022 early 2023.
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Offline TomS

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #271 on: December 23, 2018, 05:58:25 pm »
It's a SECDEF request, not Air Force, so probably not mission-driven.  Defense industrial base is probably the justification.  Not for nothing, the incoming SECDEF (formerly deputy) is a former Boeing exec...

Offline marauder2048

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #272 on: December 23, 2018, 09:06:34 pm »
Defense industrial base is probably the justification.

"owning the technical baseline" gets interesting when you discover the TDP for everything that makes the
F-15X remotely compelling is property of a guy with الشيخ in his name.

Offline NeilChapman

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #273 on: December 24, 2018, 01:18:57 am »


How quickly could these planes be delivered?  What is the status of the F-15X production line?

Online bring_it_on

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Re: USAF plans F-15 modernization
« Reply #274 on: December 24, 2018, 06:38:19 am »
Qatar expects to receive its aircraft by 2022 so if ordered in FY20, the AF could expect to receive the first jets probably in 2023 minus any production break.
« Last Edit: December 24, 2018, 06:50:05 am by bring_it_on »
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