Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II provided the satisfactory results on its testing phase at Fort Worth, Taxes of it 185th test flight and marking the total test flight toll to 837 this year. The F-35 Lightning II tests includes the short takeoff and vertical landings which makes it suitable for landing of Ships, this test was done on USS WASP (LHD-1) off the coast of Virginia.
F-35 Lightning II is the 5th Generation Multirole Stealth Fighter plane which is still under development phase. It is inherited from the X-35 of Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) program at Lockheed Martin funded by theUS government. This program was designed to replace F-16, A10 and F-18 with F-35 Lightning II.
F-35 Lightning II is a single seat with a single engine, it s small and more conventional than the Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor. It has a maximum speed of more than Mach 1.6 with 60,000 lb (27,000 Kg) of takeoff weight. It has resemblance with F-105 thunderchief, F-35 Lightning II new engine can deliver 60 percent more thrust than any other single engine fighter Jet on the planet. This makes its wings load comparable to F-16.
F-35 Lightning II have been in testing with its three variants, which are F-35A CTOL, F-35B STOVL and F-35C CV. The following are the specifications of these variants.
According to the Lockheed Martin, several flight test and outcomes have been noted and considered which are:
- October was the busiest month for flying in the history of the F-35 flight test program, with F-35 aircraft executing 122 flights. The F-35B aircraft known as BF-2 accomplished 22 flights, the most ever for an F-35 in one month.
- F-35Bs completed their 500th flight on Sept. 30. In October, F-35Bs executed the most vertical landings (73) for a single month in the history of the flight test program, including the 200th vertical landing for the program Oct. 4.
- AF-12 and AF-13 F-35A conventional takeoff and landing (CTOL) aircraft were delivered to the 33rd Fighter Wing at Eglin Air Force Base,Fla., on Oct. 19 and 26, respectively. This marked the fifth and sixth delivery of CTOL jets to Eglin and the 12th overall delivery of an F-35 to the Department of Defense in 2011.
- As of Nov. 3, F-35C carrier variant (CV) jets had executed 59 successful catapult launches and three arrestments.
- F-35C aircraft achieved 200 flight hours on Sept. 22.
- The F-35A known as AF-1 achieved the F-35’s maximum design limit speed of Mach 1.6 for the first time on Oct. 25.
Lockheed Martin also provided the total flight test activity for 2011 which are:
- F-35A CTOL jets have flown 407 times.
- F-35B STOVL aircraft have completed 296 flights.
- F-35C CV jets have flown 134 times.
F-35 have flew total of 1,432 times which includes production model flights since December 2006.