NAVAIR

Photo release: F-35 test team completes first external stores testing on F-35B

Over an Atlantic test range, Lockheed Martin test pilot Dan Levin flies F-35B test aircraft BF-2 with external weapons pylons for the first time Feb. 22. (Photo courtesy Lockheed Martin)

Over an Atlantic test range, Lockheed Martin test pilot Dan Levin flies F-35B test aircraft BF-2 with external weapons pylons for the first time Feb. 22. (Photo courtesy Lockheed Martin)

Feb 23, 2012

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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 external 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. (Photo courtesy Lockheed Martin)

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<p>ATLANTIC OCEAN (Oct. 3, 2011) An F-35B Lightning II conducts initial sea trials over the Atlantic Ocean. The F-35B is the Marine Corps Joint Strike Force variant of the Joint Strike Fighter and is designed for short takeoff and vertical landing on Navy amphibious ships. The aircraft is operating with the amphibious assault ship USS Wasp (LHD 1). ( photo courtesy of Lockheed Martin)</p>

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The F-35 lands at Patuxent River Naval Air Station, Maryland.

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