Poland | Ongoing armament fever – Potential purchase of F-15EX after the F-35s
Andreas Pogiatzi
Published on 09/09/2023 at 17:32

The armament program of Poland is not about to end, as the country is expected to become a powerful military force in Europe in the coming years.

Following the purchase of the 5th generation F-35 jets, Warsaw is showing strong interest in the purchase of F-15EX Eagle II fighter jets, according to the manufacturer Boeing.

According to an announcement on September 7, Boeing is ready to supply Poland with a number of F-15EX fighters. Warsaw has already received two of these fighters and currently plans to acquire a total fleet of 104 aircraft. It is also recalled that last month the Indonesian government made a formal commitment to procure 24 F-15EX (F-15ID).

“Poland’s interest in the F-15EX confirms its commitment to the readiness and effectiveness of its military forces,” said Tim Flood, Boeing’s senior director of Global Business Development for Europe and the Americas. “The F-15EX offers superior interoperability, supportability and affordability along with a strong industrial design that would support Poland’s goal of developing an independent defence capability,” he said.

“The F-15EX is the most advanced fighter in the world with unmatched capabilities, survivability and is the right fit to bolster Poland’s security needs,” Rob Novotny, director of Business Development for Boeing’s F-15 program, also stated. “Through enhanced interoperability with US and NATO forces, the capability for technology development and an economic operational life of 20,000+ hours, Poland can expect the F-15EX to prevail in existing and future threat environments.”

Exactly how the F-15EX might fit into the Polish Air Force’s modernization plans is not immediately clear. Currently, Warsaw’s fighter jet fleet consists of F-16C/D Block 52+, MiG-29 Fulcrum and Su-22 Fitter. Poland is also in the process of acquiring F-35A Joint Strike Fighters and recently began receiving South Korean FA-50GF light fighters. Authorities in Poland plan to retire the MiG-29s, some of which have already been transferred to Ukraine, as well as the Su-22s.

For Poland, the F-15EX could be part of the attempt for the country’s possible entry into NATO’s nuclear arms exchange agreements. Under this program, the US military has B61 nuclear gravity bombs stored at various bases across Europe and has procedures in place to make these weapons available to certain alliance members in the event of a serious crisis.

The F-15EX is derived from the F-15E Strike Eagle, which the US Air Force has already approved to use multiple variants of the B61 bomb, including the newer B61-12 version. F-16s configured to use the B61s, which make up the bulk of NATO’s current nuclear-capable fleets, will only be able to use these bombs in unguided mode.

As for the improvements to the F-15EX, these include the Advanced Missile and Bomb Ejector Rack (AMBER) system to carry up to 22 air-to-air missiles, infrared search & tracking system, advanced electronic warfare (EW) equipment, AESA radar and a revised structure with a 20,000-hour lifespan.

With information from: The War Zone, Insider

Also read: Poland | Over 4% of GDP for defence





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