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F-35 Lightning II in 2011

On Jan. 20, 2012, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta took the F-35B STOVL variant off the probation imposed by former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, lifting the cloud that hung over the STOVL fighter’s future. This week Lockheed Martin released videos of the F-35A’s first night flight, and the 2011 flight test compilation shown here. At year end the number of flights and test points both exceeded the 2011 goals, but there remain significant concurrency challenges to the program due to issues discovered in flight testing, with more expected to arise as the more challenging test points are flown. Nevertheless, 2011 ended on an up note for the JSF program.

    li class="comment even thread-even depth-1" id="comment-21169">

    Is this video F-35 Lightning II in 2011 available for use to an in house sales and marketing conference we are having next week? It needs to be high res.

    li class="comment byuser comment-author-chuck-oldham bypostauthor odd alt thread-odd thread-alt depth-1" id="comment-21180">

    The video is owned by Lockheed Martin and released to the press, but use outside the media would be their decision to make.

    li class="comment even thread-even depth-1" id="comment-21308">
    David Chester

    Why bother to take-off and land horizontzlly when this vehicle can perform these operations without needing any horizontal runway?

    li class="comment byuser comment-author-chuck-oldham bypostauthor odd alt thread-odd thread-alt depth-1" id="comment-21320">

    A horizontal take-off run increases the amount of useful load the aircraft can carry, as does a short rather than a vertical landing with respect to the load the aircraft can bring back to the ship]. Aboard ship, that load on take-off increases even more if you have a “ski-jump” installed on the bow of the ship, which helps the aircraft more than just a straight deck.