Military Aviation

[Video] F-15EX performs first flight, paving the way for the delivery of the first two jets to the USAF later this year

The F-15EX completes 90-minute test flight.

As the interesting video in this post shows, the new Boeing F-15EX fighter jet completed its first flight on Feb. 2, 2021 paving the way for the early delivery of the first two jets to the US Air Force (USAF) later this quarter. The jet took off and landed from St. Louis Lambert International Airport, completing a 90-minute test flight before returning to the airport.

Boeing F-15 Chief Test Pilot Matt Giese checked out the multirole jet’s avionics, advanced systems and software. A test team monitoring the data collected during the flight in real time confirmed that the aircraft performed as planned.

This print is available in multiple sizes from AircraftProfilePrints.com – CLICK HERE TO GET YOURS. F-15E Strike Eagle 366th Fighter Wing, 391st Fighter Squadron, MO/90-0249 – Mountain Home AFB, ID – 2008

“Today’s successful flight proves the jet’s safety and readiness to join our nation’s fighter fleet,” said Prat Kumar, Boeing vice president and F-15 program manager, in the company news release. “Our workforce is excited to build a modern fighter aircraft for the U.S. Air Force. Our customer can feel confident in its decision to invest in this platform that is capable of incorporating the latest advanced battle management systems, sensors and weapons due to the jet’s digital airframe design and open mission systems architecture.”

The fighter’s digital backbone means it can serve as a testbed for future technology insertion, a key capability for the Air Force. Modern variants of the F-15 also include fly-by-wire flight controls, an all-new digital cockpit, modern AESA radar and the ADCP-II, the world’s fastest mission computer.

The F-15EX, the most advanced version to date, features the Eagle Passive/Active Warning and Survivability System electronic warfare system to improve mission effectiveness and survivability for operators.

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In July, the Air Force awarded Boeing a contract to build the first lot of eight jets. Future plans call for as many as 144 aircraft.

As already explained, the F-15EX will simply fall in on the mission of the F-15C/D, but since in the 2030s the F-15E comes to the end of its service life the EX could shift to more of the Strike Eagle model’s ground-attack mission. The USAF has officially said it intends to fly the aircraft with a single pilot although the EX will feature two cockpit positions.

Moreover, on Jan. 28, 2021 Boeing received a licence from the US government to offer its F-15EX fighter jet to the Indian Air Force (IAF).

The F-15EX will compete with Sweden’s Saab Gripen and France’s Dassault Rafale among others for the IAF’s plan to replace its Soviet-era fleet with 114 new multi-role aircraft.

Photo credit: Eric Shindelbower / Boeing

Dario Leone

Dario Leone is an aviation, defense and military writer. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviation Geek Club” one of the world’s most read military aviation blogs. His writing has appeared in The National Interest and other news media. He has reported from Europe and flown Super Puma and Cougar helicopters with the Swiss Air Force.

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