Air Force awards engine contract for F-15EX

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48th Maintenance Group aerospace propulsion technicians test an F-15 aircraft engine at Royal Air Force Lakenheath, England, Feb. 5, 2020. Technicians test and verify every engine to ensure each one is combat performance ready for the fighter squadrons at the Liberty Wing. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Madeline Herzog)


Published Oct. 29, 2021

Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs

WASHINGTON (AFNS) —  

The United States Air Force awarded a $1,579,662,187 contract to General Electric, GE Edison Works, Cincinnati, Oct. 29, for the purchase of 29 engines — installs and spares — in support of the production of 12 F-15EX Eagle II aircraft.

Initial deliveries will begin in October 2023.

The contract includes seven additional options for the purchase of a most-probable quantity of 329 engines with the final delivery occurring in 2031.

Over the next 10 years, these projected deliveries will support the production of 136 F-15EX aircraft to meet the Air Force’s projected demand.

The F-15EX is the latest version of the proven, twin-engine F-15 fighter. It features state-of-the-art upgrades with fly-by-wire controls, digital cockpit displays, advanced avionics, and the Eagle Passive/Active Warning and Survivability System (EPAWSS).

The F-15EX also has an open mission systems (OMS) design with a high-speed optical bus — a digital backbone that will allow for the rapid insertion of new and future capabilities.

Designed to replace F-15C/D aircraft, which have been in service for more than 30 years, the F-15EX capitalizes on more than $5 billion in recent Foreign Military Sales and United States Air Force investments.

In his 2020 paper Accelerate Change or Lose, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. CQ Brown, Jr. challenged the Air Force, saying “collectively we owe it to the American taxpayers to examine how we can provide greater value at an affordable cost to the Nation’s defense.”

This acquisition of a major F-15EX subsystem embraced the challenge through a demanding engine competition that further reduced production costs, while still supporting the program’s aggressive delivery schedule.

“The United States Air Force is proud to partner with General Electric as our engine manufacturer that will power America’s newest, advanced F-15 aircraft,” said Brig. Gen. Dale R. White. “As the program executive officer of fighters and advanced aircraft, I am laser-focused on ensuring the rapid delivery of this new aircraft to our warfighters,” White added. “Not only will it reduce sustainment costs and drive down risk as it replaces our aging F-15C/D fleet, it will also deliver new capabilities that complement the existing and future TACAIR (tactical air) portfolio.”

The F-15EX, the Air Force’s newest fighter aircraft, arrives to Eglin Air Force Base, Florida March 11. The aircraft will be the first Air Force aircraft to be tested and fielded from beginning to end through combined developmental and operational tests. The 40th Flight Test Squadron and the 85th Test and Evaluation Squadron personnel are responsible for testing the aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo/1st Lt. Karissa Rodriguez)