US is including extra F-15E/F-15EX’s tooth by enhanced EPAWSS

U.S. F-15E and brand-new F-15EX fighter jets are set to obtain a major improve. They are going to be outfitted with an important digital warfare countermeasure system, enhancing their effectiveness towards opponents. The completion of a important milestone – the testing of the Eagle Passive Energetic Warning Survivability System [EPAWSS] – marks an essential development for the U.S. Air Pressure and protection producer BAE Techniques. This high-tech gear will equip the fighter jets with jamming and EW safety till they’re retired. 

Picture by USAF, Matthew Plew

In a latest announcement, BAE Techniques confirmed that the USAF had accomplished the primary operational and testing evaluations of the system on April 2nd. This milestone successfully acknowledges the transformative capabilities of EPAWSS. Amy Nesbitt, who heads the EPAWSS program at BAE Techniques, highlighted the system’s upgradability and capability for fast incorporation. “Our focus is on utilizing agile software program growth to supply common enhancements to fielded EW methods. This empowers our shoppers to sort out future electromagnetic threats head-on,” mentioned Nesbitt. 


US to supply latest Boeing's F-15 to Egypt - the Advanced Eagle
Picture credit score: Army As we speak

The newest EPAWSS boasts complete digital warfare capabilities, together with radar warning, geolocation, situational consciousness, and self-defense. As well as, its safety by fashionable built-in air protection methods allows extra freedom of motion and infiltration into battle zones. This improve may considerably improve the fighter jets’ capabilities, significantly if confronted with a closely shielded opponent resembling China in a close-to-peer battle. 

“EPAWSS represents a major technological leap ahead, enhancing the lethality and fight capabilities of the F-15E and F-15EX in contested, degraded environments towards superior threats,” remarked Main Bryant Baum, EPAWSS take a look at director for the Air Pressure Operational Check & Analysis Middle. Main Baum added that EPAWSS has set a brand new commonplace in digital warfare amongst jet pilots, with over a decade dedicated to its growth. 

U.S. Air Pressure price range paperwork for fiscal 2025 recommend that the procurement for the system will conclude in 2029, after an funding of $1.8 billion. In response to the Air Pressure’s Chosen Acquisition Reviews, the Preliminary operational functionality, or “Required Property Accessible,” is anticipated inside a 12 months. Over the approaching months, the system will start its distribution to operational models.

In the US, they called the F-15EX 'a giant mistake of the USAF'
Picture by Jerry McGrath

Maximizing F-15s’ potential

The Enhanced Pilot Consciousness Weapon Survivability System [EPAWSS] represents a sophisticated degree of digital warfare expertise, turning into a useful instrument for pilots to maintain themselves and their allies secure. This technique doesn’t solely monitor and jam adversary air protection methods, but it surely additionally deceives enemy Digital Warfare [EW] models. 

EPAWSS encompasses radar warning, situational consciousness, geolocation, and self-protection. It’s adept at detecting and defeating threats originating from the air or the bottom within the more and more intricate and electronically challenged arenas of contemporary warfare. 

F-15EX 'missile truck' can shoot down 6 fighters in one flight
Picture credit score: USAF

EPAWSS employs the most recent developments in computing, receiver, and transmitter expertise to offer pilots with refined info for superior decision-making. As proclaimed by Boeing, this expertise initiates an important enhancement within the F-15’s survivability capabilities. 

Outdated F-15s towards fashionable radars

For F-15s not due for retirement quickly, EPAWSS ensures they will cope with up to date radars by enhancing each detectability and safety, thereby enhancing survivability past the outdated Tactical Digital Warfare System presently put in within the plane. As acknowledged by a senior US Air Pressure official, EPAWSS outfits the F-15 to stay practical for a lot of extra years, extending its operation past Homeland Protection and low-threat environments. 

Sukhoi failure in Asia - to be replaced by two dozen F-15EXs
Picture by Samuel King Jr.

The operational testing of EPAWSS started in July 2023, displaying its “cognitive” digital warfare skills on the Northern Edge 2023 train. Boeing reported profitable outcomes, with real-time testing carried out on two new F-15EX Eagle II jets and the preliminary low-rate manufacturing began in July 2022. “Cognitive” EW includes using synthetic intelligence or machine studying to scrutinize alerts from risk radars and different transmitters and discern the perfect technique for jamming or deceiving them. 

NE23 train

The NE23 train evaluated the EPAWSS’s means to quickly reply to unidentified electromagnetic threats. It examined the system’s capability to course of sensor knowledge in flight, create advanced algorithms, and alter waveforms immediately. 

First operational USAF F-15EX Eagle II enters service in 2023
Picture credit score: Boeing

The F-15E was initially designed within the Nineteen Eighties for long-range, high-speed interception missions with out requiring an escort or digital warfare plane. These days, the battlefield situation has modified drastically as a result of fast evolution of anti-access/Space Denial methods using digital warfare methods. Updating the F-15E with EPAWSS not solely elevates its fight capabilities in a contemporary battle area but additionally prolongs its service life. Whereas fifth-generation plane just like the F-22 Raptors and F-35 Lightning IIs make the most of stealth applied sciences to considerably reduce their radar signatures, the F-15E fighters are noticeably extra weak to assaults of their absence. 

Future function towards China

The refurbished F-15s play a necessary function in any potential confrontation with China. Regardless of the stealth benefits of the F-35, the F-15’s velocity, long-range functionality, and bigger payload capability make it invaluable. In an emergency, the Eagle’s distinctive thrust and maneuverability may turn into important options. 

F-15E Strike Eagle flies more hours per month than the F-35
Picture by Grasp Sgt. Terry L. Blevins

Emphasizing its strategic significance, the US Air Pressure has requested $824 million for the 2025 annual price range to finalize the acquisition and set up of EPAWSS on 99 F-15E Strike Eagles which can be destined to stay in service. 

The Air Pressure intends to exchange the soon-to-retire 100 F-15Es with 94 new F-15EXs, though the paperwork don’t make clear what number of will likely be outfitted with EPAWSS yearly. Finally, this method is a vital aspect within the efforts to keep up the Strike Eagle’s operational readiness till no less than 2040.


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