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New processor makes Strike Eagle more lethal

by 1st Lt. Micah Gardner
Aeronautical Systems Center

10/27/2005 - WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio (AFPN) -- When F-15E Strike Eagles starts getting a new core processor next year, they will be more lethal and effective weapons in the war on terrorism and beyond.

The Aeronautical Systems Center's F-15 Systems Group here is managing the development, test and acquisition of the advanced display core processor. It will allow the fighters to process data faster and carry more advanced weaponry.

Installation of the new flight software is tied to its production. The first 15 aircraft should receive the upgrade by Sept. 30, 2006. The remaining jets will get the system by Sept. 30, 2010.

The processor will replace and integrate the functions of the Strike Eagle's original 1988 computing technology, including the multi-purpose display processor and the very high speed integrated circuit central computer. The older processor and computer are the jet's “brain,” working in concert to process target data, maintain information in memory and enable target engagement with a variety of weapons.

"The advanced display core processor will improve the F-15E's system reliability and availability," said Mr. George Spencer, director of the F-15 Systems Group.

The older processor and computer have reached their growth limits and face increased operational costs, he said. The processor is plagued with obsolete parts and lacks sufficient memory to meet requirements.

"We had already reached the limits with the previous system," Mr. Spencer said. "We could not have added any new weapons or other functions with it."

Developed using commercial technologies, the new processor will enable the F-15E to accommodate new weapons currently in development and provide the jet with the growth capacity to meet future warfighter needs.

"The ADCP (and other) modifications provide the capability to use the latest generation of smart weapons, including the small diameter bomb," Mr. Spencer said. "This includes all of the crew displays for receiving the target tasking, the data required to program the weapon and the actual delivery of the bomb onto the target."

The processor supports the need for real-time information in the cockpit and aids in the proper execution of interdiction, close air support, counter-air, ground attack, theater missile defense and combat search and rescue missions. The updated processor gives F-15E pilots the ability to detect, identify and engage multiple targets simultaneously.

"By giving us the capability of using more weapons, and more advanced weapons, we will be able to attack more targets -- with a higher probability of target destruction -- on any given sortie," Mr. Spencer said.

The Air Force has conducted F-15E flight tests with the processor. It provides enhanced graphical, textual and active sensor video presentation of the aircraft's flight information and tactical situation.

"This modification also increases the situational awareness data available to the crew through the digital data links," Mr. Spencer said. "The crew will see additional data on expanded or new display pages."

(Courtesy of Air Force Materiel Command News Service)

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