Israel Pays for Additional F-35s

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Unread post21 Nov 2018, 09:27

steve2267 wrote:Within the context of Israel wanting additional F-15's, this desire may very well stem from the need to carry 5,000lb munitions such as the deep penetrating GBU-28.

From the last Weapons Carriage Requirements slide I had downloaded from this forum, the GBU-28 does not appear to be slated for carry by the F-35. So if Israel needs to deliver those somewhere, the F-15 appears to be their ride.

Based on comments by Gunn, Berke, Mau et al, it seems clear that the F-35 has much better legs than the F-15C. However, even if the GBU-28 could be carried by the F-35, and while there does not appear to be any show-stopper preventing the Lightning from being able to do so -- other than dot-your-i-and-cross-your-t's engineering work, it is not clear the F-35 with GBU-28's would have better range than F-15E's hauling one or two GBU-28's with external 600gal tanks. (As I'm editing this post for written clarity... the only thing that causes me pause is... the GBU-28 is quite long: could there by any fitment / separation issues / aero issues with such a long munition extending backwards from the F-35 wing towards the stabilator?)

From what I can tell, an F-15E may be able to haul
  • two GBU-28 on STA 2 & 8 with a 600 gal tank on STA 5 for 27430lbs of gas total --OR--
  • one GBU-28 on STA 5 with two 600 gal tanks on STA 2&8 for 31510lbs of gas total

I have no idea how far a Strike Eagle could deliver that payload, or how it would compare to an F-35 with two GBU-28's on STA 3&9.

But in the context of why Israel may be interested in more F-15s... it may be to lug GBU-28's around Iran...

Looks like 3 GBU-28s on the new F-15s. ... poster.pdf ... raphic.pdf

Good to know IF some of the comments on this forum are accurate (present company excepted) that the F-35s have a unrefuelled combat radius greater than 1,100nm and can do loiter of 1-2 hours at 1,000nm from base since they have longer legs than the F-15...... :bang:


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Unread post21 Nov 2018, 10:05

GBU-28 wouldn't have been particularly useful even against the deeper bunkers Hezbollah dug 15 years ago.

A state with access to modern tunneling and earth moving equipment/materials can readily outdig and
outharden the penetrating capability of a 5,000 lb weapon.


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Unread post21 Nov 2018, 10:27

The F-35's inner most pylons can carry 5,000 lbs class weapons. So, the GBU-28's wouldn't be a problem. This whole idea that the F-15 can carry a heavier payload than the F-35 at greater range. Isn't supported by the facts....

Also, many factors that haven't even been touched on. For example new version of the F-15 Strike Eagle has come under $100 Million. Also, does anybody believe the total cost of ownership of the F-15 with two F100/F110's is cheaper than the F-35 to operate and maintain??? (I don't)

In short the F-35 would be cheaper to own and operate. Being "twenty" times more capable with internal stores. Now with external stores the difference is negligible at best......

As I have said before only way I see Israel acquiring New F-15's. Is under considerable pressure from the US. In order to keep the St Louis Production Line going.....Yet, it hardly has anything to do with merits of the F-15 over the F-35. (laughable)


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Unread post21 Nov 2018, 16:55

weasel1962 wrote:
Looks like 3 GBU-28s on the new F-15s. ... poster.pdf ... raphic.pdf

Good to know IF some of the comments on this forum are accurate (present company excepted) that the F-35s have a unrefuelled combat radius greater than 1,100nm and can do loiter of 1-2 hours at 1,000nm from base since they have longer legs than the F-15...... :bang:

That second pdf is interesting for the IRST. They didn't put a pod on there and have the line go to that, they make it look as if the F-15 Advanced has a under nose mounted window solution like F-35 does. Has anyone heard of that before?


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Unread post21 Nov 2018, 17:08

Chalk it up to artistic license as the other pdf clearly shows the IRST mounted in the left pylon above the Sniper pod (ie "Tiger Eyes").
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Unread post21 Nov 2018, 17:13

I find the range and loiter figured highly suspect. One, it doesn't mention any loading configuration. Two, it indicates a drastic, and I do mean drastic, improvement over the F-15E, which can only loiter for 3hrs at 150nm with 4 AAMs, CFTs, and wing tanks.

The IRST is in the pylon of the targeting pod.

*Edit* The loiter figure I listed is for retaining the wing tanks throughout the mission. IF we assume they are dropped when empty, then maybe we can get a loiter of 3hrs at 200nm with a light air to air load.

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Unread post22 Nov 2018, 16:28

IDF: No decision on advanced F-15s as yet
22 Nov 2018 Yaakov Lappin, Tel Aviv and Jeremy Binnie

"Israel has not made a final decision on acquiring a more advanced version of the Boeing F-15 multirole fighter, the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) told Jane's. "All possibilities regarding this issue are under IDF, IAF [Israeli Air Force], and the defence establishment's examination, and their position has yet to be decided," the IDF said in a statement on 20 November.

The Ynet news website reported on 19 November that there had been an official announcement that the IAF would acquire a more advanced version of the fighter called the F-15IA in addition to more Lockheed Martin F-35s, 50 of which have already been ordered.

It indicated that the F-15IA is the Israeli designation for the F-15 Advanced Eagle. A Saudi version called the F-15SA is already in production and Qatar has ordered one called the F-15QA, the main difference between the two being the Qataris have opted for the Large Area Display cockpit made by the Israeli company Elbit.

Ynet said there was initially US opposition to Israel's acquisition of the F-15IA if it resulted in a reduction of Israel's F-35 order. It cited a document approved by Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman shortly before he resigned on 14 November as saying that the IAF still intends to field three F-35 squadrons, each with 25 aircraft...."

Source: ... 15s-as-yet
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Unread post22 Nov 2018, 18:14

Israel won't buy any more F-15's until the line is closing for real. That's when they will order them. Until that it will just be talks about it.

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