After cancelling its order for the Russian Su-35, Indonesia is nearly finished with the purchase of the US F-15 ‘Invincible Eagle’ fighter to strengthen the capabilities of its air force.
Indonesia will be the next nation in Southeast Asia to own the American-built F-15 series of heavy fighters known as “Invincible Eagle” after Singapore. The Indonesian military was entering the final stages of negotiations for a contract to purchase F-15 heavy fighters made in the US, according to Prabowo Subianto, Indonesia’s Minister of Defense, on November 21.
According to Mr. Subianto, this contract will be inked right away after receiving the two governments’ final clearances. Previously, in February 2011, the US State Department gave its approval for the sale of Boeing F-15ID fighters and related parts to Indonesia. This contract’s worth could reach $13.9 billion USD. Two months after Indonesia declared it would not purchase Su-35 aircraft from Russia, the Southeast Asian nation has agreed to purchase US weapons.
Indonesia’s chief of staff for the air force, Fajar Prasetyo, acknowledged in December 2021 that the nation would not purchase the Russian Su-35 fighter as originally intended and that the US F-15 and the French Rafale were both options under consideration. According to Mr. Prasetyo, Indonesia felt “heavy-hearted” in giving up the deal to purchase Su-35s from Russia. The Southeast Asian nation previously decided to purchase a two-engine, single-seat fighter in 2015, but has not yet finalised a contract to purchase 11 aircraft as was discussed with Russia in 2018.
Observers noted that Indonesia’s decision to back out of the Su-35 deal may have been motivated in part by worries about possible sanctions from the US under the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA). In order to penalise people and organisations who engage in “large-scale transactions” with Russia’s weapons industry, a law was passed in 2017. The US F-15 Egale air superiority fighter, also known as the “Invincible Eagle,” is regarded as one of the most successful aircraft in the history of the nation’s air force.
Despite their long existence, they remain the 4th generation fighters with the greatest strength and fighting expertise in the planet. The F-15, which was created in the early 1970s and introduced into service in 1974, has since been produced in thousands of aircraft and is employed by the US Air Force and numerous other nations. The F-15 Eagle fighter is 19.4 metres long, 13 metres wide, and 5.6 metres tall. The aircraft can carry up to 30.8 tonnes during takeoff and has an empty weight of 14 tons.
These air superiority fighters have a 7.3-ton weapon capacity. The upgraded F-15E has a payload capacity of 10.5 tonnes, making it the largest fourth-generation fighter in the world. The F-15EX can carry up to 12 tonnes of weapons, which is greater than China’s H-6 strategic bomber, which can only carry 9 tonnes. The Pratt & Whitney F100-100-220 turbochargers on the F-15 have a dry thrust of 77.5 kN and can reach 111.2 kN when they burn for the second time.
Later versions have upgraded generations of engines that enhanced payload and manoeuvrability. Mach 2.5, or 3,018 km/h, is the top speed of the F-15 Eagle. One of the world’s swiftest fighters is this. Modern electronics are used by the F-15 to detect multiple targets simultaneously from distances of up to hundreds of kilometres away and to guide the weapon to multiple targets simultaneously.
The F-15 has powerful surface-to-air missiles as well as a 20 mm cannon in its air superiority variant of the weaponry. Four medium-range air-to-air missiles, the AIM-7 Sparrow or AIM-120, and four infrared missiles, the AIM-9 Sidewinder, are the main weapons of the F-15. The F-15E is fitted with a potent weapon system in its multi-purpose configuration that is designed to take out ground targets like JDAM, Paveway smart bombs, AGM-65 cruise missiles, Harpoon anti-ship missiles, etc.
With a target the size of a destroyer in range, the F-15’s radar has a reconnaissance range of more than 300 kilometres. The missile may be directed by the radar to strike six targets at once. The F-15EX is also fitted with an active phased array radar in the most recent version, which enables the fighter to identify and take out multiple targets at a greater distance. The US intends to update this fighter and use it for many more years even though they are aware that several elements of the F-15 fighter line have not yet been fully utilised.