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    Oregon Air National Guard Leads with First F-15EX Eagle II Fighter Jet Arrival

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    The skies over Oregon are set to become a testament to the latest in air superiority as the first operational F-15EX Eagle II fighter jet has landed at Portland Air National Guard Base, Oregon, marking a significant upgrade in aerial defense capabilities.

    This arrival heralds the beginning of a new era for the 142nd Wing of the Oregon Air National Guard, which now has the distinction of being the first unit in the entire U.S. Air Force to field this advanced aircraft.

    “It’s incredibly exciting, super humbling,” said Col. Michael B. Kosderka, the 142nd commander, on the delivery of the state-of-the-art fighter jet.

    The Air National Guard’s acquisition of this major weapon system before the Active component is an unprecedented move, emphasizing the Guard’s integral role in national security.

    The arrival of the F-15EX is not just a moment of pride for the 142nd Wing but a leap forward in maintaining air dominance.

    The jet, serial #008, is just the vanguard of a larger influx, with a total of 18 planes expected to join the Oregon Air National Guard’s arsenal.

    The next aircraft, #007, is undergoing final checks and will soon join its sibling on the tarmac, a Boeing spokesperson confirmed.

    This modern marvel is more than a mere replacement for the aging F-15C/Ds – it represents a significant technological advancement.

    The F-15EX boasts an impressive array of enhancements, including increased sensors, a powerful new processor, an innovative glass cockpit, and an additional weapon station under each wing.

    These features, combined with fresh, quieter engines, propels the fighter jet into a new age of air combat readiness.

    Despite being labeled a fourth-generation aircraft, Boeing defends the F-15EX’s capabilities, particularly highlighting its electronic warfare suite, the Eagle Passive Active Warning Survivability System (EPAWSS), which greatly enhances the fighter’s survivability in highly contested airspace.

    Pilot and Major Knife Conner, who flew the new fighter jet into Portland, underscored the differences from the old planes, detailing the new radar, digital backbone, engines, electronic warfare suite, and additional munitions pylons as transformative changes.

    Moreover, the F-15EX is designed to carry oversize munitions, anticipating future weaponry such as hypersonic missiles.

    Concerns over the Air Force’s diminishing fighter inventory have been voiced on Capitol Hill, with lawmakers indicating a possibility of augmenting the current 98 aircraft plan for the F-15EX fleet.

    The new jets are part of a vast infrastructure overhaul at the Portland base, including hundreds of millions in upgrades for new training facilities and a state-of-the-art hangar to house these advanced fighters.

    Relevant articles:
    First Operational F-15EX Arrives in Oregon; Milestone for Air Guard, Air & Space Forces Magazine
    15EX Eagle II lands at Portland Air National Guard Base, AeroTime
    First of new $95 million fighter jets arrives in Portland, Oregon Public Broadcasting – OPB
    Oregon Air National Guard base set to receive new jets and a massive overhaul, opb.org

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