South Korea’s next-generation fighter program is under final bidding stage, with Boeing’s F-15 Silent Eagle (SE) in the contender position, according to The Korean Times.
The F-15 is contesting against Lockheed Martin’s F-35 Lightning II and Eurofighter Tranche 3 Typhoon in the U.S. Air Force program to buy 60 combat planes to replace its obsolete fleet of F-4s and F-5s.
The three-day bidding is scheduled to be finalized by Friday.
The Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) carried out a total of 55 bidding sessions for three weeks between June and July, but no offer was within the required budget, with Boeing reportedly being closest to the ceiling price.
The Air Force is keen to purchase the F-35 to balance military power across the Asia-Pacific region considering its stealth capability. Currently, China is developing stealth fighters and Japan plans to acquire a total of 42 F-35s.
In order to catch up with the F-35 stealth jet, the Chicago-based Boeing “conceptually” patched up its F-15 Strike Eagle with a few features for low-observable capability. What it has proposed are conformal weapons bays (CWB), radar-absorbent material and canted vertical tails ― although they still cannot stop critics from casting doubt on the functionality of these. According to DAPA, the introduction of twin vertical tails set outward at 15 degrees requires direct Korean investment.
“The Silent Eagle is so named because of its stealth function, but without tilting the vertical tails, the aircraft will not be able to reduce its radar cross section (RCS) from the side,” Shin In-kyun, president of the Korea Defense Network said. “The F-15 is an aircraft whose RCS is high along with the Sukhoi Su-27. The CWB will not be able to perform as well as touted, either.”
South Korea has temporarily suspended bidding its fighter jet project worth on a $7.3 billion only four days after reopening applications because bidders failed to meet the budget limit, Yonhap news agency reported on Saturday
EADS announced today that it is investing $2 billion and its technology in the KF-X aircraft to help Korea to become a fighter jet producer, following the promise of Eurofighter producing 53 out of 60 fighter jets in Korea. The development of the Korean Utility Helicopter, SURION, by KAI which secured technology from Eurocopter is a recent successful case of collaboration between Korea and EADS and brought technical effect worth about 14 trillion KRW
SAINT-CLOUD, France --- Dassault Aviation is very pleased and honored to have been chosen by the Brazilian Air Force Command to continue its participation in the F-X2 process for the selection of a next-generation fighter aircraft.>> We are getting down to work and will do everything in our power to present the Brazilian government a proposal that fully meets both the operational needs of the air force and the technological and industrial needs of the country
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