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BAE Systems to modernize U.S. Air Force's F-15 fleet

By Ryan Maass
The modernization program aims to improve the F-15 Eagle's electronic warfare capabilities. Photo by the U.S. Air Force.
The modernization program aims to improve the F-15 Eagle's electronic warfare capabilities. Photo by the U.S. Air Force.

WASHINGTON, Nov. 15 (UPI) -- Boeing has awarded BAE Systems with a $140 million contract to support its F-15 modernization effort for the U.S. Air Force.

The contract is part of the Air Force's Eagle Passive Active Warning Survivability System program, or EPAWSS. The program aims to provide F-15 Eagles with an updated electronic warfare system, which BAE System officials say is essential for ensuring the aircraft are equipped to meet emerging threats.

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"Recognizing the importance of providing this enhanced EW technology to our warfighters, our team responded during the first phase of the program by not only meeting all set program milestones, but in some cases exceeding expectations by several weeks," BAE Systems Electronic Combat Solutions general manager Brian Walters said in a press release.

The F-15 Eagle was originally designed and developed by McDonnell Douglas to support air supremacy missions in 1967, taking first flight in 1972. After merging with Boeing, the company's aircraft has been sold to six countries. In addition to the U.S. Air Force, primary users include the Japan Air Self-Defense Force, the Royal Saudi Air Force, and the Israeli Air Force. None have announced plans to retire the aircraft from service.

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Industry partners began the F-15 modernization program in 2008 when developers began installing the U.S.-made electronic warfare system. The equipment supports both offensive and defensive capabilities, and can help pilots detect incoming threats with a fully integrated radar warning feature.

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