A Short Takeoff and Vertical Landing variant of the F-35 Lightning II is shown performing Crosswind and Wet Runway testing at Edwards AFB May 6. Pilot Dan Levin and a team from the F-35 Integrated Test Facility at Patuxent River, Md., accompanied aircraft BF-4 for the deployment April 11. Testing is expected to continue until June 14. The F-35B will be the single strike fighter for the U.S. Marine Corps, replacing both the AV-8B Harrier and F/A-18 Hornet.
BF-4 is flown by Dan Levin during Crosswind and Wet Runway testing at Edwards AFB May 6. A team from the F-35 Integrated Test Facility at Patuxent River, Md., will be conducting testing until June 14. The F-35 ITF at Edwards AFB also operates variants BF-17 and BF-18 for its mission systems testing of the STOVL variant. The F-35B will deliver flexibility for operations at damaged airstrips, austere expeditionary operating sites, major bases and afloat on aircraft carriers and smaller amphibious ships.
The F-35 Lightning II is an international cooperation, multi-role, multi-service, single seat, single engine strike fighter featuring a common platform across its three variants, the F-35A, F-35B and F-35C. The Joint Strike Fighter program has eight partner nations – the United Kingdom, Italy, the Netherlands, Turkey, Canada, Australia, Denmark and Norway ñ and two Foreign Military Sales countries – Japan and Israel.