2013-04-02 The third UK F-35B has begun its final check out process from Fort Worth on its way to later delivery at Eglin AFB.
According to a Lockheed Martin press release:
The third United Kingdom Lockheed Martin [NYSE:LMT] F-35 Lightning II sped down the runway at Naval Air Station Fort Worth Joint Reserve Base embarking on its first flight.
The aircraft, known as ZM137, departed at 10:16 a.m. with Lockheed Martin F-35 Chief Test Pilot Alan Norman at the controls.
ZM137 will complete a series of company and government checkout flights prior to its acceptance by the U.K. Ministry of Defence.
ZM137 will join U.K. aircraft ZM135 and ZM136 at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., later this year where it will be used for pilot and maintainer training.
For our look at the UK continuing with the B rather than switching to the C see the following Special Report: