The F-15EX fighter can hit targets at a greater distance than any other fighters currently in the US arsenal.
Outperforming both the F-22 and the F-35, Boeing is proving the F-15 is an extraordinary fighter. The fighter can hit targets at a greater distance than any other fighters currently in the US arsenal.
The US Air Force announced that its newest fighter, the F-15EX Eagle II, recently performed its first series of live-fire tests. The aircraft, belonging to Eglin Air Force Base 53rd Wing, fired AIM-120C/D AMRAAM medium-range air-to-air missiles as part of its Weapons System Evaluation Program. “The F-15EX can shoot from a significantly increased range – farther than any other fighter in the U.S. Air Force arsenal – and provides the unique capability of holding 12 AMRAAMs or other large ordinance,” Max Denbin, AFOTEC Detachment 6 team lead test engineer, is quoted as saying in the Center’s press release.
“One of the main takeaways from these live fire shots is the F-15EX Eagle II can clearly function as a long-range, standoff weapons system,” added Max Denbin. The conclusion was made after the missile test firings at the development and operation stage of the F-15EX Eagle II. The first live-fire test took place in January 2022.
As reported, the 40th Flight Test Squadron aircrew and aircraft fired the weapon pursuing a BQM-167 aerial target drone as part of the 53rd Wing’s Combat Archer. During the flight, the F-15EX detected the drone using onboard sensors, acquired a weapons-quality track and launched the missile at the target. After tracking the missile’s release and flight toward the BQM-167, the shot was determined to be successful.
The F-15EX Eagle II’s long-range combat capabilities are key to ensuring US forces have the ability to deploy forces on a global scale, according to a statement from the US Air Force Command. “As adversaries continue to develop combat capability, the weapons systems with standoff capability, like the EX, are going to be critical in maintaining a tactical advantage,” Denbin said.
Compared to the first F-15 version, the F-15EX has been significantly upgraded and modernized. The F-15EX’s airframe is built with an enhanced weapon payload and has a service life of up to 20,000 hours. Earlier, Andrew P.Hunter, the US Air Force’s chief procurement officer, said the squadron’s F-15Cs were in such bad condition that they needed to be equipped with the F-15EX version as soon as possible. Since the F-15C/D version experienced problems over a period of time, its operational readiness has been reduced to 45%.
The modern version of the F-15EX is roughly equivalent in size to the Russian Su-30 model. It can perform various tasks such as deploying long-range weapons, establishing a ‘no-fly zone’ against enemy air defense systems, and protecting US airbases and territories. The missile firing test demonstrated the F-15EX’s combat range and its ability to cope with the challenges posed by major US adversaries.
This fighter is also appreciated by another feature: It is the first American fighter model equipped with hypersonic weapons. Because the hypersonic missile is too large to fit into the internal weapons bay of stealth fighters such as the F-22 and F-35, the F-15EX is considered an ideal vehicle to deploy this weapon.
Team 6’s engineers and analysts have been studying the F-15EX’s performance against 5th generation fighters for the past two months. The results show that the new Eagle Passive Active Warning Survivability System has given the F-15E and F-15EX fully integrated radar warning capabilities, along with superior jamming and countermeasures in challenging areas.