With the maturing of the combat systems on the F-35 demonstrated in the maneuver warfare from the sea Bold Alligator 2012 exercise, and the weapons testing about to begin, the F-35 is ready for ramped up production. 4 a month will be produced this summer. There will be little excuse to go backwards when the initial combat systems can be combined with weapons in an advanced “flying combat system.”
Here photos are provided of recent F-35B activities.
F-35 Test Team Completes First External Stores Testing on F-35B
NAVAL AIR SYSTEMS COMMAND, PATUXENT RIVER, Md. – Over an Atlantic test range, Lockheed Martin test pilot Dan Levin flies F-35B test aircraft BF-2 with externa l weapons pylons for the first time Feb. 22. The test measured flying qualities with external pylons, inert AIM-9X Sidewinder air-to-air missiles and centerline 25 mm gun pod. Significant weapons testing for the F-35B and F-35C variants is scheduled for 2012, including fit checks, captive carriage, pit drop and aerial drop tests.
The F-35B is the variant of the Joint Strike Fighter for the U.S. Marine Corps, capable of short take-offs and vertical landings for use on amphibious ships or expeditionary airfields to provide air power to the Marine Air-Ground Task Force. The F-35B is undergoing test and evaluation at NAS Patuxent River prior to delivery to the fleet. (Photos courtesy Lockheed Martin)
Victor Chen, (301) 757-2211, PEO(JSF) Public Affairs