Boeing has been awarded a modification
to a previously awarded contract for the US Air Force’s F-15 Fighter Modernization Program (RMP) radar upgrades. The contract is valued at over $187 million. It provides for work on 29 Group A and Group B kits, spares, fuel tanks and other equipment and services. The F-15A
reached initial operational capability for the US Air Force in September 1975, and approximately 670 F-15s remain in the USAF’s inventory. Current F-15 flying locations include bases in the continental United States, Alaska, England, Hawaii, Japan and the Middle East. The RMP development and testing began in January 2011. The RMP
replaces the F-15 legacy APG-70 mechanically scanned radar with an AESA system designated APG-82(V) and is designed to retain functionality of the legacy radar system while providing expanded mission employment capabilities including longer air-to-air target selection and enhanced task capabilities and enhanced air-to-ground and air-to-air combat identification capabilities. Work will be performed in St. Louis, Missouri, and is scheduled for completion in April 2022.
It can also affect the fighter fleet more directly.
Following the crash of a Missouri Air National Guard F-15C aircraft Nov 2/07 (see crash simulation), the US Air Force suspended non-mission critical F-15 flight operations on Nov 3/07. While the cause of that accident is still under investigation, preliminary findings indicate that a structural failure during flight may have been responsible. In response, Japan suspended its own F-15 flights, which left them in a bit of a bind – even as Israel’s F-15s joined them on the tarmac. As the effects continue to spread and the USAF and others continue to comment on this situation, DID continues to expand its coverage of this bellwether event. A conditional restoration of the American F-15A-D fleet to flight status was soon overturned by the re-grounding of that fleet as a result of the report’s conclusions – a status that remains only been partially lifted. Meanwhile, the accident report has been released (compete with video dramatization) and the status of the remaining aircraft will have significant implications for the USAF’s future F-15 fleet size. Not to mention its other procurement programs.
Then, too, this is America. Now there’s a lawsuit.