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Singapore F-15 fighter jets at Andersen
In a move strengthening ties between the United States and Singapore, the US Air Force has unveiled plans to beddown up to 12 Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) F-15 fighter jets at Andersen Air Force Base (AFB), Guam, Alert 5 first noted. The decision is part of a revised proposal for the base’s infrastructure upgrades, aligning with strategic initiatives in the Indo-Pacific region.
Aligning with strategic initiatives in the Indo-Pacific region
According to a USAF news release, the US Department of the Air Force (DAF) initially issued a Notice of Intent (NOI) on Apr. 20, 2021, to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for Infrastructure Upgrades at Andersen AFB, Guam. Following the initial scoping period conducted in April to May 2021, the DAF placed the EIS on a strategic pause to further consider the scope of the EIS, including the requirements of evolving strategic initiatives in the Indo-Pacific and how the Proposed Action could best support these initiatives.
As a result of the strategic pause, the DAF revised the scope of the Proposed Action to include the beddown of up to 12 RSAF F-15 fighter aircraft and associated mission support. The DAF is now conducting an additional public scoping period for the revised proposal to beddown up to 12 RSAF F-15 fighter aircraft and construct infrastructure upgrades at Andersen AFB, Guam.
Andersen critical infrastructure enhancements
The purpose of the Proposed Action is to provide critical infrastructure that enhances US posture west of the International Date Line. Additionally, the purpose of the Proposed Action is to beddown and operate RSAF fighter aircraft at Andersen AFB to support training requirements.
The Proposed Action is needed to enhance DAF capability to support US and partner nation forces within the Indo-Pacific region and strengthen the US’s ability to respond regionally and worldwide, through construction of infrastructure upgrades and increased support of fighter aircraft, in alignment with evolving DAF and DoD strategies and initiatives for the region.
Increasing and improving airfield and munitions infrastructure would address capability gaps and allow for greater efficiencies and agility in the way ground operations are conducted. The DAF anticipates publication of a revised NOI in the Federal Register on or around Dec. 15, 2023, which will start the additional 30-day public scoping period.
Beddown and mission support of up to 12 Singapore F-15 fighter jets
Under this proposal, the DAF is considering the beddown and mission support of up to 12 RSAF F-15 fighter aircraft, and the construction of infrastructure upgrades adjacent to the northwest corner of the airfield and within the munitions storage area at Andersen AFB. Construction of upgrades would take place over approximately 3 to 7 years and would include airfield pavements, an aircraft hangar, maintenance and utilities buildings, fuel systems, fencing and utilities, roadways and parking, stormwater management infrastructure, and earth-covered magazines.
Andersen AFB’s infrastructure upgrades
The proposed infrastructure has multiple uses and could support both the F-15 beddown and other DAF, service component, and partner nation aircraft or missions operating from Andersen AFB now or in the future. The DAF reviewed requirements for strategic capabilities within the Indo-Pacific region and identified Andersen AFB for enhanced capabilities, including beddown of up to 12 RSAF F-15 aircraft and upgrade of operationally relevant infrastructure, dismissing five other potential alternative locations within the Pacific Air Forces area of responsibility from consideration.
Once Andersen AFB was identified for enhanced strategic capabilities, the DAF considered other locations on Andersen AFB for construction of infrastructure upgrades; however, only the Proposed Action locations were determined to meet the criteria for the infrastructure upgrades.
The F-15SG (formerly F-15T) is a variant of the F-15E, ordered by the RSAF. F-15SGs were chosen on Sep. 6, 2005 over the Dassault Rafale. The F-15SG remains critical to continue having air superiority aircraft over neighboring countries that deploy state of the art Russian aircraft. The RSAF’s F-15SG is an all-weather multi-role fighter designed to achieve air superiority over the battlefield. The F-15SG is the most advanced version of the Eagle with its great speed, maneuverability, electronics and weapons.
12 F-15SGs are assigned to the 428th FS “Buccaneers”/366th FW located at Mountain Home AFB, Idaho. The squadron was dedicated to train the Republic of Singapore Air Force pilots how to fly their new F-15SG. The 428th FS operates 12 aircraft to teach advanced weapons and tactics to the RSAF pilots’ as well as training ground crews and maintainers. These formal training missions are part of the Peace Carvin V agreement.
Photo credit: Tech Sgt. Aaron Oelrich / U.S. Air Force and Republic of Singapore Air Force