Thu, Jul 15, 2010
Test Pilot: "Everything Went According To Plan"
The Silent Eagle flight demonstrator aircraft F-15E1 developed
by Boeing completed a successful first flight on July 8 from
Lambert St. Louis International Airport. During the 80-minute
flight, F-15E1 opened and closed its left-side Conformal Weapons
Bay, which contained an AIM-120 Instrumented Test Vehicle (ITV)
missile. The ITV was not launched.
"The Silent Eagle demonstration flight validated our initial
engineering design approach," said Boeing F-15 Development Programs
Director Brad Jones. "Our intent was to verify all systems are
operational in a flight environment. This flawless flight allows us
to move into the next phase. In the next couple of weeks, we will
ferry F-15E1 to the test range and launch an AIM-120."
"Everything about the flight went according to plan," said
Boeing F-15 Chief Test Pilot Dan Draeger. "We saw nothing unusual
during the flight, and we cleared the desired flight envelope
needed to fire the missile at the test range; that is pretty much
unheard of on a first flight."
The Silent Eagle variant includes improved stealth coatings,
redesigned conformal fuel tanks, a canted vertical tail to improve
aerodynamic efficiency and much more. The F-15SE offers unique
aerodynamic, avionic and Radar Cross Section reduction features
that provide the user with maximum flexibility to dominate the
ever-changing advanced threat environment. The aircraft's Conformal
Weapons Bays can carry a variety of air-to-air missiles and
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