Boeing, in collaboration with the U.S. Air Force and Qatar Emiri Air Force (QEAF), has unveiled the most advanced F-15 jets at the company’s St Louis factory in Missouri, where the F-15 is produced. Named the F-15QA Ababil, the fighter jet is the most advanced version of the venerable F-15 family and was built for the Qatar Emiri Air Force.
Named for the legendary Qatari winged protector, the F-15 Qatar Advanced jet was developed for Qatar under a US$6.2-billion contract from the U.S. Department of Defense. As per the contract, the Qatar Emiri Air Force (QEAF) will produce 36 F-15QA fighter jets, and the first set of these jets will ferry to Qatar later this year following the completion of pre-delivery pilot training.
The roll-out video shows the aircraft with an illustrative range of weapons, including the Raytheon AIM-9X Sidewinder, AIM-120 AMRAAM air-to-air missiles, the Boeing AGM-84 Harpoon anti-ship missile, and the Raytheon AGM-88 HARM (High-speed Anti-Radiation Missile).
“The Qatar F-15QA program further enhanced next-generation technologies in the advanced F-15 such as the fly-by-wire flight controls, an all-glass digital cockpit, and contemporary sensors, radar and electronic warfare capabilities,” said Prat Kumar, vice president of the F-15 program. “Driven by digital engineering and advanced manufacturing, these aircraft represent a transformational leap for the F-15. The F-15QA will enhance the superiority of the QEAF with more speed, range, and payload than any fighter in the world.”
Boeing will provide logistic and maintenance support for the QEAF during pilot training, which began earlier this year. Additionally, Boeing will establish and operate an aircrew training and maintenance center for QEAF at Al Udeid Air Base in Qatar until 2024 while providing spare parts and logistical support in the country once the aircraft are delivered.
Boeing will also provide a domestic version of the fighter jet, called the F-15EX Eagle II, which USAF is set to obtain up to 144 examples.