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Silent Eagle


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Based on everything that i have seen the Silent Eagle is based on the F15E Strike Eagle, I wonder has anyone thought about adding those updates to a F15C for a air to air platform, it is a given that the building of the F22 makes that a poor idea for the US, but some of our allies who fight the F15 might be interested in it.

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F-15C has not been produced for 30 years: the airframes are getting old and Silent Eagle structural upgrades would be likely impossible to fit on old aircraft. Only thing which probably can be upgraded without too much hassle is the radar, and for example Japan has already been upgrading the radars on their own. Even that is pretty expensive upgrade - even USAF couldn't afford replacing radars on all F-15C's.

 

It doesn't really look like Silent Eagle is generating much interest, anyway.

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Even that is pretty expensive upgrade - even USAF couldn't afford replacing radars on all F-15C's

 

Well they could afford to. They just won't.

 

Either way, there's no reason to. The F-15E is still in production, and variants thereof are more capable than the C especially with the 229 engines. If you want to run it like a C, remove the FAST packs. IIRC no one was interested in silent eagle though, even those who bought advanced F-15E variants.

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I understand your points perfectly and they make allot of sense, a better way of asking that might have been could they have build a version of the silent eagle as a one man interceptor instead of the two man ground attack version.

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F-15E is a multirole aircraft, what sense does shrinking it's capabilities make? It's fast, has high altitude, decent radar etc., it can make a good interceptor anyway. And after that it can go bomb the shit out of the bad guys, which is also a nice feature.

 

Same for SE, if it's ever put into production.

 

As for current users of F-15E's, it's true that they do not want to buy SE, but I don't see them buying more E's either. And if they actually decide to acquire more F-15's, I suppose it would be 'standard' E versions, no one is going to pay for the development of new aircraft. If the USAF wanted to buy a few, then it would be a different matter.

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Needing 'just air superiority' is not too probable a scenario, methinks. There's a reason why AFs seek multirole fighters.

Point is rather that Strike Eagle was designed to be a bomber with secondary role in air combat, by contrast most fighters today have been designed as fighters with secondary ground attack role. This heritage inevitably handicaps F-15E variants in air superiority roles.

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Don't forget the F-15 A/C heritage part, those were clearly air superiority fighters. Sure, F-15E is heavier than its predecessors, but so is the F-16C/D/E and I wouldn't say they won't do in A2A. F-15E will do even better. Aircraft getting heavier is a trend everywhere, Su-35 is heavier than Su-30, Su-30 than Su-27 etc.

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Well, the Strike Eagle is close to two tons heavier than C. So, if your needs are just air superiority, with maybe limited ground attack needs, then second seat & extra weight are just liability.

 

To be fair, the 229 powered E models and variants thereof still have a better T:W ratio despite the weight increase. The removal of the CFTs / FAST packs can mitigate the weight issue somewhat and reduce base airframe drag if you're splitting hairs.

With HMDs and HOBS like AIM-9X, I'm really not seeing the problem here.

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just how important is the weight/drag difference of such models nowadays, when all the important bits are radars,AWACS support, tactics, ECM etc. one f-15 pilot was a moderator at World Affairs Board and he several times explained the fixation with maneuverability (usually about ´´but Su-27 can do Cobra!´´ and SRAAMs) that in modern context this equals to basicly to a situation where a soldier stops during battle, drops his rifle, NVG,comms, flak jacket , helmet, pulls knife and launches him on enemy .

 

basicly every boss fight in ´80´s action movies :)

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Speed, acceleration, climb performance, high subsonic/supersonic maneuverability are very important parameters in BVR combat. Faster, better accelerating aircraft will be able to both execute missile attacks, and retire from combat with much more success than a slower plane. That is major part why F-22 is so formidable.

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As for current users of F-15E's, it's true that they do not want to buy SE, but I don't see them buying more E's either. And if they actually decide to acquire more F-15's, I suppose it would be 'standard' E versions, no one is going to pay for the development of new aircraft. If the USAF wanted to buy a few, then it would be a different matter.

Saudi Arabia has new F-15Es on order, & I'm not sure if S. Korea & Singapore have received all of their most recent orders yet, but apart from that, I agree, the market seems to have dried up. Saudi Arabia was the only established user of that set, & what it's done is order the latest & best it's allowed to buy, with AESA radar & all the other shiny gizmos, & an upgrade programme for most of its existing F-15Es.

 

But Saudi F-15C/Ds will be retired, not upgraded. From that I conclude that even those with money to burn don't think it worth spending a lot on F-15Cs. Instead, It's buying Typhoons. So far it's ordered 72. They have the high performance wanted in the right areas for air-air fighting.

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Swerve, what about that?

 

 

Boeing has been awarded a $3.7bn contract for the upgrade of the Royal Saudi Air Force's (RSAF) fleet of 70 Boeing-built F-15C/D Eagle aircraft to the latest Saudi Advanced (SA) configuration.

http://www.airforce-technology.com/news/newsboeing-upgrade-rsaf-f-15cd

 

There's quite a lot of other articles about upgrading of RSAF F-15C fleet.

 

IIRC Typhoons are replacing F-5s, while both F-15C/Ds and older E's will be upgraded and 84 new E's are ordered (dozen will stay in the US for training purposes).

Edited by urbanoid
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Hmm. I've seen plenty of reference to Saudi F-15S upgrades to the same standard as the F-15SA. I suspect confusion about what the F-15S is. It's a Saudi special F-15E, originally slightly downgraded. I think someone got it mixed up with the older Saudi F-15C/D.

 

The Pentagon clearly says new F-15SA, & upgrade of F-15S to same standard.

 

I trust the official statement more than press reports, especially press reports which get the engine wrong.

 

Think about it. What makes more sense? Building up a fleet of F-15E-based F-15SAs, all with the same configuration, or buying a lot of new F-15SA, upgrading 35 year old F-15C/D to something approaching the same configuration - but which obviously can't be quite the same - & not doing anything about the fleet of newer F-15E-based F-15S. The numbers tally, as well. Every report which gives a number of aircraft to be updated says 68 0r 70, which was the number of F-15S (was 70, now down to 68), not the number of F-15C/D.

 

Contract announcement. The lower case 's' in F-15s is grammatically incorrect as a plural, but correct if one assumes it's a typo for upper case 'S'.

 

I think the evidence for F-15S upgrade, not F-15C/D, is overwhelming.

 

BTW, the idea that Typhoon is a replacement for the F-5E is illogical. Apart from a few RF-5Es, the F-5E fleet was retired before the first Typhoon arrived, & had already started being sold off. Typhoon is a high-end aircraft excelling in air combat. F-5E was second-line when it was new, & was used for close air support. It's far more reasonable to think that Typhoon is the replacement for the previous dedicated fighters, the Tornado ADV (24, retired since Typhoon entered service) & F-15C.

Edited by swerve
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What I meant is that at least some squadrons previously equipped with F-5s will receive Typhoons, or so I read somewhere. Others may/may have replace(d) the ADVs. Aircraft capabilities is IMHO not something we should look at when talking about replacements - everything is multirole now anyway.

 

About F-15S I must agree that what you said is logical. To me it looked like they're going to have 200+ F-15s upgraded to more or less common standard.

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Re-equipping a squadron with a new type doesn't mean that new type replaces the old one. Those squadrons may have been disbanded, or cut back to skeletons, since the retirement of the F-5E, & been re-formed with new roles & mostly new personnel as well as new aircraft. Some RAF squadrons have changed from bomber to interceptor & vice-versa since being formed. That doesn't mean that bombers were replaced by interceptors.

 

Not everything is multi-role, & there are degrees of it. F-22 is primarily air-air, for example, & F-15A to D was originally built for air combat. I'm pretty sure that the Saudis assign their F-15Cs exclusively to air defence (it's quite a big country), with all ground attack being done by the Tornado & F-15S. The Typhoons can do both, but right now they're the Saudis best air defence aircraft, so probably mainly tasked with that, & until Paveway IV* is fully in service in Saudi Arabia, with Saudi Typhoon pilots trained to use it, they'll have very limited air-ground abilities. AFAIK deliveries start this year. So, for the moment Saudi Typhoons aren't much use air-ground.

 

The contracts are for 152 (reduced from 154 because two aircraft were lost): 84 new F-15SA & 68 F-15S upgraded to F-15SA. No upgrade of the F-15C/Ds has been announced, no contracts let (& there would have been FMS notifications). That's all the existing & ordered F-15E-based aircraft (F-15S & F-15SA). If they were going to upgrade the F-15C/Ds, surely they'd do them before the much newer F-15S, not leave it until they're 40 years old? I know the USAF is upgrading F-15Cs, but it's upgrading a minority of a much larger fleet, so-called 'Golden Eagles' chosen because they're in the best condition - & started in 2007.

 

*British version of Paveway, designed & made by Raytheon UK, with a Thales UK fuse. Export to Saudi Arabia was held up by the USA. An example of why it's wise to make sure our weapons are ITAR-free, IMO.

Edited by swerve
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  • 1 month later...

Re-equipping a squadron with a new type doesn't mean that new type replaces the old one.

 

Sure it does: if it didn't, that would mean that the F-35 isn't a true A-10 replacement just like the F/A-18 was never an F-14 or A-6 replacement and the Pentagon told me . . . oh wait, never mind.

Edited by CaptLuke
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  • 2 months later...

F-15SE was one of three candidates for South Korean FX programme, but DAPA(Defense Acquisition Program Administration) chose the F-35 instead, as it is said that the F-15SE scored only half of the F-35. South Korea is currently upgrading its F-16/KF-16 fleet and hiping to upgrade F-15K's as well in the future, so there's still possibility that South Korea adopt something similar to it.

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