Boeing and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) recently signed an agreement to upgrade F-15J aircraft to the Japan Super Interceptor (JSI) configuration.
The contract is part of a larger $4.5 billion modernization program, announced by the U.S. Government in October 2019. In all, 98 F-15J aircraft will be upgraded to JSI configuration. The upgrades will introduce electronic warfare and weapons. An all-new advanced cockpit system, running on the world’s most advanced mission computer, will deliver pilots enhanced situational awareness, Boeing said in a release July 28.
Under the agreement, Boeing will provide MHI with retrofit drawings, ground support equipment and technical publications for the upgrade of the first two F-15J aircraft to the Japan Super Interceptor configuration.
Tokyo currently operates over two hundred F-15J (single-seat) and F-15DJ (two-seat) airframes. These airplanes, based on the American F-15C, were manufactured under license by MHI.
MHI produced under license the current Japan F-15J fleet of over 200 aircraft between 1980 and 2000, and will serve as prime contractor for the upgrade. Sojitz Corporation, a trading company that works with Boeing’s team in Japan, will support this effort.
The Direct Commercial Sale contract lays the foundation of the modernization program. MHI will develop the detailed modification plan for the jets and prepare the facilities and workforce for the induction and upgrade of up to 98 aircraft beginning in 2022.
An artist’s impression released along with the Boeing announcement showed an F-15 in Japanese livery equipped with a large missile, possibly AMG-158 Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile (JASSM), mated to the airframe’s center weapon pylon.