General Electric will deliver 65 F110-129C engines to Saudi Arabia from 2008 to re-engine its Boeing F-15S fighters, after receiving a contract worth more than $300 million.

Ultimately, the Royal Saudi Air Force is expected to re-engine 70 F-15S Eagles delivered between 1995 and 1999 and now powered by Pratt & Whitney F100-229s, with the upgrade to be performed in-country (Flight International, 20-26 November 2006).

Saudi Arabia is the third F-15 operator to select the GE powerplant, and the first to switch engine models. South Korea selected the F110-129 to power its 40 F-15Ks and Singapore also ordered the engine for its 12 F-15SGs.

Only the F-15E Strike Eagle and its export variants can be re-engined with the F110-129. The US Air Force completed a field evaluation of the GE engine in the F-15E in 1999, clearing it for export, but lacks the budget to re-engine its own aircraft. Israel is the only other F-15E operator, having acquired 25 F-15Is.

GE says the engines for South Korea, Singapore and now Saudi Arabia incorporate service life extension programme hardware being supplied to upgrade F110-129s powering 850 USAF Lockheed Martin F-16C/Ds. This includes compressor, combustor and turbine improvements to reduce operating cost and extend time on wing.

Source: Flight International