Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II

Lockheed Martin and its international partners developed the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) in three basic versions: the conventional take-off and landing (CTOL) F-35A, the short take-off/vertical landing (STOVL) F-35B and the carrier-variant (CV) F-35C. Since the first F-35A flew in December 2006, the fleet has racked up more than 155,000 flight hours, including more than 17,000 during development testing.

Delivery of production aircraft began in 2011 and the F-35B achieved initial operational capability (IOC) with the US Marine Corps in July 2015. The F-35A followed with the USAF in August 2016. The carrier-variant entered service with the US Navy in February 2019. More than 760 have been manufactured since production began in 2006.

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UK airpower in crisis amid growing threat of war, MPs say

The state of UK airpower and its inability to counter the growing threat of war has been laid bare in a damning report by an influential group of British MPs

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Romania pushes forward with quest to acquire F-35As

Romania’s Ministry of National Defence has formally submitted a request to the Romanian Parliament to approve the purchase of 32 fifth-generation F-35A Lightning II multi-role stealth fighters, local media reported on August 9

Japanese F-35As mark first overseas deployment for Australian exercise

Four F-35A Lightning IIs from the 3rd Air Wing departed Misawa Air Base – the unit’s home base – for Australia on August 25 to participate in the two-week Exercise Bushido Guardian 2023, marking the first overseas deployment for the type in operational Japan Air Self-Defense Force service

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Nuclear confusion and Lakenheath F-35s – setting the record straight

The mainstream media has jumped on a story about the possible housing of nuclear weapons at RAF Lakenheath, home of the US Air Force’s 48th Fighter Wing (FW), and these reports have featured a number of inaccuracies.

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Vermont ANG's 158th FW: Converting to the F-35A

Two senior Vermont Air National Guard officers tell Ted Carlson of Fotodynamics.com about their unit’s conversion and the busy operational schedule since receiving the first F-35A in 2019

USAF’s ‘Spads’ set to relinquish F-16C/Ds for F-35As

The USAF’s 457th Fighter Squadron ‘Spads’ – a component of Air Force Reserve Command – is preparing to relinquish its F-16C/D Fighting Falcons for the F-35A Lightning II, after operating the former for more than 30 years

325th FW welcomes first USAF F-35As to Tyndall AFB

The 325th Fighter Wing has formally welcomed its first four F-35As to Tyndall AFB in Florida, where some 78 examples of the fifth-generation fighter will eventually equip three projected fully combat-capable Lightning II squadrons

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Final report into UK F-35B crash raises broader operational safety concerns

Almost two years after an F-35B Lightning II assigned to the RAF’s No 617 Squadron ‘The Dambusters’ plunged into the Mediterranean following an aborted take-off attempt from HMS Queen Elizabeth, the UK MOD has released a final report of its investigation into the incident, highlighting concerns regarding safety and security aboard the Royal Navy’s flagship aircraft carrier during its first operational cruise

USAF F-16C/Ds buddy up with ROKAF F-35As over South Korea

In continuing a tradition that dates back more than 20 years, airmen assigned to the USAF’s 8th Fighter Wing in South Korea have once again trained alongside their Republic of Korea Air Force counterparts during a US-ROK buddy squadron event that was held at Cheongju Air Base

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F-35B delays may leave RAF with just one deployable combat air squadron

Delays in confirming future orders of the short take-off and vertical landing (STOVL)-capable Lockheed Martin F-35B Lightning II fifth-generation multi-role stealth fighter could leave the RAF only able to field a single squadron for combat air operations, British MPs have been warned

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