Boeing has started a four-year structural analysis of the US Air Force (USAF) fleet of F-15C/D fighter and F-15E bomber aircraft under the service life extension programme (SLEP).

The USAF is planning to increase the service life of the F-15 fleet from 8,000 flight hours to 12,000.

An F-15C fighter is currently undergoing a four-year fatigue test cycle to assess the suitability of the aircraft for SLEP.

The test will also determine the possible cause of structural failures that led to the F-15C being grounded four years ago.

The air force is also planning a self-defence upgrade for the F-15 fleet that includes procurement of the F-15 eagle passive and active warning and survivability system (EPAWSS) for precise detection and identification of emerging threats.

The EPAWSS programme, if funded, will allow potential F-15 overhaul by integrating an active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar and a new core processor, according to Flight Global.