The F-15 E Strike Eagle Mounts Extra JDAMs for bombing ground targets in all-weather condition. Modified to carry these weapons adds to how dangerous the 50-year design is.
One of its missions in the precision strike role is similar to bombers, but the F-15 is a fighter adapted for the job. Conceptually a fighter bomber does not need escort fighters to shift to air-to-air against enemy fighters when bombs are dropped.
The U.S. Air Force tweak the F-15 to carry more bombs for its recent mission in Iraq. Loaded with Joint Direct Attack Munitions (JDAMS) mounted on the wings, it proved the old fighter can carry more than expected. It boosts the U.S. Air Force (USAF) versatility with added JDAMS to its load, reported Military. Adapting the twin-engine fighter lessens what is needed to carry out the mission.
The 85th Test and Evaluation Squadron did tests at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida. It took a month of testing and trials to see if the fighter can load up to 15 JDAMS. Normally, the limit for an F-15 is nine of the directed munitions, said the project's officials.
One of the advantages gained with 15 JDAMS used for active combat missions is the units can land in another airstrip, re-arm, and add more munitions for other planes. Newer fighters like the F-35 and F-22 can share with the payload needed for more combat sorties. This was mentioned by Lt. Col. Jacob Lindaman, commander of the squadron.
The 422nd Test and Evaluation Squadron conducted at Synthetic Aperture Radar Map Bomb Hit Assessment.— U.S. Air Force (@usairforce) December 29, 2020
During this test, F-15Es dropped live JDAMs, while other weapons systems and joint partners used SAR Mapping technology to track success. #ReadyAF
🔗 https://t.co/gstLhWsv2W pic.twitter.com/nd5W9FIC70
Besides advantages as a good dogfighter, the Strike Eagle carries nuclear or ordinary weapons and can carry 500-lb, 1000-lb, 2000-lb smart bombs that can wreck runways or structures with guidance the targets.
Included for attacking targets are the AIM-9 Sidewinder and AIM-120 air-to-air missiles. According to 1st Lt. Savanah Bray, spokeswoman for Eglin's 53rd Wing said six 500-pound class JDAMs are mounted on the wing. Three extra bombs are equipped on the top row for dumb bombs.
Overall, the wigs pylons carry six each for 12 JDAMS, with three types of 500, 1000, 2000 in the center of the aircraft's belly. Another bomb on the wing stations can be added, said Bray. These many guided munitions add to a destructive payload.
She added that sometimes all 15 of the guided bombs would not be used in just one sortie. Only the needed bombs are released, while other JDAMS are for other missions.
This enables the F-15 E's load to increase, lessening the need for extra human resources and transport planes to lug the needed munitions to the location. It saves resources and time to get weapons ready for the F-15 E better.
JDAMs need to be transported and assembled. Because of this, only one C-130 Hercules is needed to get bombs ready. This is part of the Agile Combat Employment concept that will allow quick reaction forces to operate anywhere, even without special facilities. The development of these initiatives lessens U.S. assets' clustering that can be targeted dangerously in one location.
The F-15 E Strike Eagle Mounts Extra JDAMs on pylons with an upgrade program use smart bombs. It adds to how dangerous an F-15 E can get.