In the mid 1960s, the requirement for a new air superiority fighter began to materialize. The United States Air Force defined a program to design, develop and produce a fighter aircraft capable of maintaining absolute air superiority in the post-1975 time period. The F-15A Eagle, built by McDonnell Aircraft Company, is this new generation fighter. Although designed as an air superiority fighter, the F-15A also incorporates those ingredients necessary for other roles.Since the first flight on 27 July 1972, the superiority of the F-15A against all threats, including high altitude supersonic and very low altitude penetration has been demonstrated. Highly accurate air-to-surface delivery of conventional and guided weapons has also been proven. In addition, the Eagle has accumulated 23,000 flight hours with only one major accident.