Air Force

June 20, 2014

‘Workhorse’ becomes first F-35 to achieve 1,000 flight hours

Tags:
Kenji Thuloweit
Editor

Paul Hattendorf, Lockheed Martin test pilot, flies AF-2 over Edwards during an Airframe Loads Envelope Expansion mission June 11. On this test mission, AF-2 reached 1,000 flying hours becoming the first F-35 to do so.

AF-2, the second production F-35 Lightning II for the U.S. Air Force, became the first F-35 to reach 1,000 flight hours.
Paul Hattendorf, Lockheed Martin test pilot, was flying an Airframe Loads Envelope Expansion mission June 11 when the fighter reached the milestone.

“AF-2’s nickname is ‘Workhorse,’ said Randy Thompson, F-35 Integrated Test Force, Government Air Vehicle lead. “It continues to carry the Flight Sciences testing load executing its primary mission of loads envelope expansion. Every AF-2 flight-test hour moves the JSF enterprise closer to providing our warriors with the Air Force Initial Operational Capability and final System Development and Demonstration maneuvering envelopes.

Thompson added that data collected from all Flight Sciences aircraft help refine the airframe usage spectrum, which in turn allows for a more accurate fleet life determination.

The 412th Test Wing is home to 15 Lightning IIs. The Edwards F-35 ITF has nine F-35s assigned for developmental testing – representing all three variants of the fifth-generation fighter: six F-35As, two F-35Bs and one F-35C.

Additionally, Edwards AFB’s Operational Test units have six F-35As assigned.

“AF-2 is the ‘Pull G’s jet.’ It was the first aircraft to hit plus-nine-G and negative-three-G and to roll at design-load factor. In addition, AF-2 is the first F-35A to intentionally fly in significant airframe buffet at all angles of attack,” said Thompson.
Both AF-2 and AF-1 ferried to Edwards from the Lockheed Martin plant in Fort Worth, Texas, May 17, 2010.

Members of Edwards AFB’s F-35 Integrated Test Force pose in front of AF-2 June 11; the day the Lightning II became the first F-35 to reach 1,000 flying hours.

Thompson said AF-2 has specific instrumentation and was calibrated for in-flight loads measurements prior to ferrying to Edwards. In addition, it is instrumented to execute airframe buffet testing; landing, braking and arresting hook testing; and ground and in-flight gun testing.

The Lightning II software has 24 million lines of code, which is continually being updated and improved. The ITF team, AF-2 and the rest of the Edwards F-35 test fleet, continues to get closer in getting the world’s most advanced fighter into the hands of the warfighter.

“The entire F-35 Edwards ITF team and the 412th TW are pressing hard to complete testing required for the 2B fleet release (Marine Corp IOC mission systems software release and AF IOC maneuvering envelope release). As aircraft compete their slated 2B testing, the team moves ahead with testing required for the final SDD clearances. Post 2B testing milestones include putting the final SDD talons on the Lightning II with the first flight of the Small Diameter Bomb, first gun fire and continued external GBU-12 envelope expansion, as well as beginning to test the final SDD mission systems suite,” concluded Thompson.

The planned date for Air Force Initial Operational Capability of its F-35As is August 2016.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

News Briefs January 23, 2015

Fitz-Gerald pedestrian crossing work Through next week, road work will be taking place near the Fitz-Gerald Blvd. and Doolittle Parkway intersections, which is located in the housing area near Chapel 2. This work will result in better visibility of the pedestrian crossings and make crossing at these locations easier and safer for all. Fitz-Gerald and...
 
 
juveniel-court

JIC aims to maintain good order, morale, discipline

In the Sept. 9, 2014, Desert Wings, an article titled Vandalism costs school district $12,000.î The story was about damage that occurred at Bailey Elementary School. The 412th Test Wing has taken to address not only that insta...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Scott M. Ash

SecAF, CSAF discuss future of the Air Force

Air Force photograph by Scott M. Ash Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh III and Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James deliver their, “State of the Air Force,” press conference Jan. 15, 2015, in Washi...
 

 
Air Force photograph by Rebecca Amber

Driving on base could make you eligible for gas tax refund

Air Force photograph by Rebecca Amber The state of California may refund taxes paid on gasoline to residents who use the gasoline while driving on a military installation. Claims must be submitted to the California State Contro...
 
 

Air Force senior leadership addresses need to stabilize RPA enterprise

During a State of the Air Force address held at the Pentagon, Jan 15, Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James announced immediate preliminary steps to develop a get-well plan to improve the health of the MQ-1B Predator and MQ-9 Reaper enterprise in light of extensive combatant commander operational needs. (Intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance)...
 
 

AFIMSC headquarters site announced

Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas,†was selected as the host base for the Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center Headquarters. Air Force officials chose the installation after analyzing operational considerations, installation attributes, economic and environmental factors at four candidate locations. “Following site surveys at the four candidate locations, we ultimately ...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>