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Eglin Welcomes Final F-35A
33rd Fighter Wing Public Affairs
June 2, 2014

EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- The 58th Fighter Squadron became the Air Force's first complete F-35A Lightning II squadron after they welcomed their 26th and final F-35A May 28 at the 33rd Fighter Wing, here.

Maj. Scott Charlton, 58th FS pilot, ferried the aircraft, AF-45, from Lockheed Martin's F-35 production center in Fort Worth, Texas.

"We've been in a growth mindset for the last few years," said Lt. Col. Matt Renbarger, the 58th FS commander. "We've been focused on adapting our training levels to the availability of aircraft as a growing squadron. It's been exciting to see this mission develop, but we're more excited to dial-in all of our attention to training our team."

The arrival of the last Air Force joint strike fighter variant scheduled to be stationed at the wing marked a shift in priorities for the 58th FS and 58th Aircraft Maintenance Unit. Both units experienced a series of transitions and accomplishments since the arrival of the first F-35A here July 14, 2011.

Eglin Wing Surpasses 5,000 Combined F-35 Sorties
1st Lt. Hope R. Cronin
33rd Fighter Wing Public Affairs
May 30, 2014

Photo credit: U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Joely M. Santiago

EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- The 33rd Fighter Wing etched another mark on the F-35 Lightning II joint strike fighter program May 28 by logging its 5,000th combined sortie in the F-35.

The F-35 Integrated Training Center at the wing flies a third of all F-35 sorties in the Department of Defense program. More than 15,000 sorties have been flown across all variants of the fifth generation multirole stealth fighter.

"Our team knows they are leading the way in putting the F-35 through its paces and developing the cadre that will establish the F-35's role in air dominance," said Col. Todd Canterbury, the 33rd FW commander. "The men and women here advance the ball down the line every day, and we see that in the number of sorties generated and students trained."


F-35 Achieves Three Major Flight Test Milestones on Same Day
May 29, 2014

Photo credit: Lockheed Martin

In three separate flight tests on May 27, Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] F-35 Lightning II aircraft demonstrated air-to-air combat capability, completed the first flight test with the next level software load and accomplished a landing at the maximum test speed and drop rate.

In the Point Mugu Sea Test Range airspace off the Central California coast, an F-35B demonstrated the jet’s air-to-air combat capability when it sequentially engaged two aerial targets with two AIM-120 Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missiles (AMRAAM) during a Weapon Delivery Accuracy mission.

Test pilot Lt. Col. Andrew ‘Growler’ Allen tracked two maneuvering drone targets, making the very first dual AMRAAM shot from any F-35 variant, and the first live AMRAAM shot from the F-35B Short Take Off and Vertical Landing (STOVL) variant.

“The U.S. Marine Corps, which operates F-35Bs, will be the first military service branch to attain combat-ready Initial Operational Capability (IOC) in 2015,” said J.D. McFarlan, Lockheed Martin's vice president for F-35 Test & Verification. “This Weapon Delivery Accuracy test highlighted the air combat capability that will give Marine aviators a decisive combat edge in contested airspace.”


April Marks New F-35 Flying Records
Lockheed Martin
May 8, 2014

Lockheed Martin Test Pilot Paul “Hat” Hattendorf maneuvers F-35A aircraft AF-3 in a
composite photo of the first Manual Ground Collision Avoidance System (MGCAS)
test flight over the dry lakebed at Edwards AFB, Calif. on April 11, 2014.
Photo credit: Lockheed Martin / Chad Bellay.

The Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] F-35 Lightning II aircraft fleet, which surpassed 16,000 program cumulative flight hours to date in April, flew a monthly record high for System Development and Demonstration (SDD) with 282 flight hours and 153 flights in April.

“The SDD fleet achieving more than 150 flights in one month speaks to the quality of this aircraft and the commitment of this team,” said J.D. McFarlan, Lockheed Martin's vice president for F-35 Test & Verification. “We’re nearly complete with Block 2B software flight science testing on the F-35As, and we’ll move forward with Block 3 software testing this summer.  The SDD program is scheduled to complete Block 2B testing for the F-35B this year in support of the U.S. Marine Corps’ Initial Operational Capability (IOC) in 2015 with its F-35B fleet.”

In April, operational F-35s fleet-wide flew 812 hours, with SDD F-35 aircraft flying 282 flight hours in one month. In 2014, through April, F-35A test aircraft flew 420 hours; F-35B test aircraft flew 281 hours; and F-35C test aircraft flew 222 hours. Operational F-35s of all three variants flew 2,790 hours for the year.


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F135 Progress To Date:

Production Engines Delivered: 145
Total Flight Hours: 7278

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