Congratulations to all of you who flew and worked on the F-15 Eagle and to the Might Mighty’s 50th anniversary.
50 years ago today, on July 27, 1972, under the control of McDonnell Douglas chief test pilot Irving L. Burrows, the F-15 Eagle first took to the skies over Edwards AFB, CA.
Burrows took the Air Force’s new twin-engine dedicated air superiority fighter on a 50 minute cruise, which topped out at 12,000 feet and 250 knots, before returning to base. The flight was uneventful other than a minor issue with a landing gear door.
“It was just like the simulator,” said Burrows upon departing the aircraft, S/N 71-0280, the first YF-15A prototype (F-15A). It was painted in “Air Superiority Blue” with orange flight test markings, and had square wingtips and an unnotched stabilator.
“This aircraft performed well from the first minute,” said Burrows later. “We knew we had a winner from the start.”
Several more flights occurred in the week that followed. They included milestones such as achieving Mach 1.5 speed and reaching an altitude of 45,000 feet.
By Tech. Sgt. Dhruv Gopinath and Tech. Sgt. Rachel Maxwell
SOUDA AIR BASE, Greece —
U.S. F-15E Strike Eagles assigned to the 494th Fighter Squadron, stationed out of Royal Air Force Lakenheath, England, conducted an Agile Combat Employment movement to Souda AB Greece, within the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility, July 15, 2022.
“We wanted to operationalize the concept of agile forces conducting operations in multiple combatant commands from a single geographic location,” said Lt. Col. Curtis Culver, 494 FS commander. “We demonstrated that we can rapidly move aircraft between combatant commands, and be ready for contingency operations in either.”
In order to validate the concept, the 494 FS flew two of its Strike Eagles from Souda Air Base, Greece to the CENTCOM AOR, which landed, refueled and then returned the same day.
“It was a really cool experience overall,” said Capt. Sean Blye, the mission’s flight lead. “It was great to see all the different teams come together to make it seamless and show just how easy it is to send out airpower across multiple combatant commands in a single day.”