F-15’s New Radio a Boon in Combat, Homeland Defense

An Aeronautical System’s Center effort to install a new UHF/VHF radio on USAF F-15s is almost complete, and the new radios have proven themselves in Southwest Asia, as well as Stateside. F-15Es flying over Southwest Asia have used their airborne sensors to detect and track insurgents, and then used the new radios to pass the information to coalition ground forces and other friendly aircraft. One “enthusiastic message” from a pilot described how he was able to direct ground troops to a combatant “hiding under a piece of plastic” that the coalition forces had missed, said Alisa Miliner, who manages the radio program for ASC’s 912th Aeronautical Systems Group. Here in the States, F-15 pilots flying Operation Noble Eagle missions can communicate directly with civilian aircraft to determine their intent in questionable situations. To date, the service has installed 570 of 583 radios since the effort began in January 2005.