It is reported that Japan will spend nearly $500 million to upgrade their F-15 fleet. With that money, the Japanese F-15 would be a variant of the Super Interceptor.
This variant itself is said to be comparable to the F-35, the next generation fighter. This effort was made because of the threat of Chinese warplanes that often “disturbed” the sovereignty of airspace. Japan has a territorial dispute with China involving the Senkaku Islands.
Quoted from Defense Security Asia, work on the Japanese F-15 will be carried out at Boeing’s facility in St. Louis, USA and is expected to be completed in 2028.
Boeing claims that upgrading the F-15 to the Super Interceptors variant will increase the overall capabilities of the Japanese Air Force.
As mentioned above, Japan’s efforts to improve the capabilities of their F-15 fleet are related to the Chinese threat. Between April and November last year, 643 foreign military aircraft entered Japanese airspace. And 486 of them belong to the Chinese military.
F-15 Super InterceptorQuoted from Military Aerospace, Japan intends to upgrade their F-15 fighter to the most capable variant. It is said, this capability will be comparable to the F 15EX, a more modern and sophisticated fighter aircraft.
Some of the upgrades include new systems, such as the Raytheon AN/APG-82 (V)1 active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar, the new BAE Systems AN/ALQ-239 digital electronic warfare (EW) system, as well as several new weapon systems.
With the upgrade, Japan hopes their F-15 will be the same as the US Air Force’s F 15EX. The West itself refuses to upgrade some of the older variants of the F-15. They prefer to buy the F-15 EX variant which is the newest model of this fighter.
The F 15EX features a fly-by-wire flight control system, digital EW suite, infrared search and tracking (IRST) and Raytheon APG-63(v)3 AESA radar. The EX variant itself is capable of carrying more ammunition than any fighter in its class. He can even fire a 7,000 pound hypersonic missile.
Although it doesn’t have the stealth capabilities of the 5th generation, the F 15EX is equipped with heavy weapons. Includes 22 medium-range air-to-air missiles such as the AIM-9X Sidewinder and AMRAAM.