The Israeli air force is upgrading the capabilities of its Boeing F-15I strike aircraft, including the installation of a new radar system.

The sensor most likely to be fitted is the Raytheon APG-82(V)1 active electronically scanned array, which was also fitted to the US Air Force's F-15Es in place of the ageing APG-70.

The selection of the US-made radar instead of an Israeli-designed option is likely the result of the fact that Israel can purchase the APG-82(V)1 using the Foreign Military Funding it receives annually from the USA.

"The F-15I is still our strategic jet. It holds the largest number of capabilities and has the ability to carry many weapons and reach far destinations," the head of the F-15I branch told the air force's website. Tasks range from "routine missions related to the combat formation to special missions which will remain confidential", says the official – identified only as Maj A.

F-15I pair - Israeli air force

Israeli air force

Israel's comprehensive systems upgrade for the F-15I is a direct outcome of a delay in the delivery of the Lockheed Martin F-35.

The nation has ordered 19 conventional take-off and landing F-35As at a cost of $2.75 billion, with the first two due to arrive in Israel in 2018. Late last year, the defence ministry also received approval to acquire another 14 of the stealthy type.

Source: Flight International