F-35 JSF Makes First Air Show Appearance

The F-35C Joint Strike Fighter made its first public appearance at an air show last May 21st.

The flight commemorated 100 years of naval aviation by highlighting the future of tactical air power for the U.S. Navy.

Piloted by Lt. Cmdr. Eric “Magic” Buus, the F-35C made a single pass down the show line at the Joint Service Open House at Andrews Air Force Base, Md.

The F-35C variant of the joint strike fighter is distinct from the F-35A and F-35B versions with its larger wing surfaces and reinforced landing gear for greater control in the demanding carrier take-off and landing environment.

The flyover originated from the F-35C‘s primary test site at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md. and was executed in the same manner as any controlled test sortie. The aircraft, CF-2, flew within its approved flight envelope and was accompanied by an F-18 Hornet flying chase.

The F-35C is the Navy’s first stealth aircraft. The internal structure of the US Navy variant is strengthened to handle the loads associated with catapult launches and arrested landings. A larger wingspan provides increased range and improves low-speed handling characteristics for the Navy aircraft. Like the US Marine Corps variant, the US Navy variant carries a refueling probe on the right side of the forward fuselage. Range and payload are superior to legacy strike fighters. Weapon loads, cockpit layout, countermeasures, radar, and other features are common with the other variants.

Source: Air-Attack, Global Security

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