By Dale Atkinson and Eric Edwards
FY22 JPR HELD AT NELLIS
On 27–29 September, approximately 90 survivability professionals from Government and industry met at Nellis AFB, NV, for the Joint Aircraft Survivability Program’s (JASP) FY22 Program Review (JPR). The location of this year’s meeting, which was held at the home of the 414 Combat Training Squadron’s famed Red Flag Exercise facility (and immediately adjacent to the base’s flightline and busy runway)—provided an appropriate backdrop to discuss a wide variety of JASP-sponsored projects and related aircraft survivability information.
During the 3-day meeting, more than 40 technical presentations were given in the following categories:
- Near-Peer Adversary Threats
- Radio Frequency
- General Projects and Invited Presentations
- Aircraft Force Protection
- Vulnerability Accuracy and Confidence
- Structural Vulnerability Reduction.
Following the technical presentations, a closed session was held with the Principal Members Steering Group (PMSG) to complete the FY23 program build. For more information about the FY22 JPR and its presentations, please contact Mr. Darnell Marbury at email@example.com or 703-604-0387.
F-15 CELEBRATES 50 YEARS OF AIR SUPERIORITY AND SURVIVABILITY
In July 2022, the Air Force celebrated the 50th anniversary of the maiden flight of the F-15 Eagle. And in the 5 decades since that flight, the iconic jet has proven itself as one of the most effective and survivable fighters in modern military history. In fact, the plane, which was specifically designed by McDonnell Douglas to have unprecedented air superiority over all peer adversaries, has reportedly racked up an undefeated lifetime dogfighting record, with more than 100 victories and 0 (confirmed) losses. It’s thus no wonder some have suggested that this extremely fast, highly lethal, highly versatile, and battle-tested fighter might just be the very best U.S. fighter of all time.
Probably the most famous example of the Eagle’s impressive survivability capability came in 1983, when an Israeli Air Force pilot was able to stabilize and land his F-15D after a midair collision with an A-4 Skyhawk during a training exercise. With the plane’s entire right wing sheared off, the pilot was able to employ the afterburners on the powerful Pratt & Whitney twin engines to regain control of the spinning aircraft and safely land it (though at twice the normal speed). Flying and landing an F-15 with just one wing were previously believed by many (including its manufacturers) to be virtually impossible, but with the Eagle’s wide body and high-thrust capability, inspectors realized the aircraft could effectively fly (for a short time) much like a wingless rocket. And remarkably, after the damaged plane was given another wing and repaired, it went on to notch another aerial combat kill of a MiG-23 2 years later.
More recently, to extend the aircraft’s service life and maintain its competitiveness against other fourth- and fifth-generation aircraft, the F-15’s survivability capability has been enhanced by the addition of the BAE-Boeing Eagle Passive Active Warning and Survivability System (EPAWSS). Currently being installed on the F-15E and F-15EX, the EPAWSS is also giving the aircraft fully integrated advanced radar warning, situational awareness, geolocation, and self-protection capabilities.