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U.S. Approval to Offer F-15EX to India

Thursday 28 January 2021

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NEW DELHI (Reuters) — Boeing has received a licence from the U.S. government to offer its F-15EX fighter jet to the Indian air force, a senior executive said on Thursday.

Boeing will compete with the Swedish Gripen and the French Rafale among others for the IAF’s plan to buy 114 multirole aircraft to replace its Soviet era fleet.

Ankur Kanaglekar, director, India Fighters Lead, Boeing Defense, Space & Security, said discussions on the F-15EX had taken place earlier between the two governments.

“Now that we have the marketing licence it allows us to talk to the Indian Air Force directly about the capability of the fighter. We have started doing that in a small way”, he said, adding that the conversations are expected to gather pace during the Aero India show next week.

F-15E
Over Iraq in 1999 for Operation Northern Watch.
(Credit: Capt. Patricia Lang, U.S. Air Force)

In 2018, the USAF and Boeing discussed a proposed F-15X/EX, a single-seat variant of F-15 based on the F-15QA (“Qatar Advanced”)intended to replace the USAF’s F-15C/Ds. Improvements includes the AMBER weapons rack to carry up to 22 air-to-air missiles, infrared search and track, advanced avionics and electronics warfare equipment, AESA radar, and revised structure with a service life of 20,000 hours. Although it is not expected to be survivable against modern air defences by 2028, the F-15EX could perform homeland and airbase defence, no-fly zone enforcement against limited or no air defence systems, and deploying standoff munitions.


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