It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
Jon S. Beesley, chief test pilot for the Joint Strike Fighter, also known as the F-35, said the plane handled "marvelously," performed flawlessly and flew better than the simulator. He flew to 15,000 feet, escorted by three jets that provided safety and took pictures.
Officials initially said the test flight would last an hour; Beesley flew for 35 minutes.
He said one of two air data sensors was not operating properly. Although it did not pose a danger, the procedure called for ending the flight at that time, preventing completion of the remaining few tests, including raising the landing gear, officials said.
"Certainly to fly this first flight with the duration of almost 40 minutes and to only have this single warning appear in the pilot's display related to this sensor is remarkable, and we're really pleased with the quality of this first jet," said Dan Crowley, executive vice president and general manager of the Joint Strike Fighter program.
Fort Worth, Texas, December 15, 2006 --
The Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] F-35 Lightning II lifted into the skies today for the first time, completing a successful inaugural flight and initiating the most comprehensive flight test program in military aviation history.
"The Lightning II performed beautifully," said F-35 Chief Pilot Jon Beesley following the flight. "What a great start for the flight-test program, and a testimony to the people who have worked so hard to make this happen." The most powerful engine ever placed in a fighter aircraft – the Pratt & Whitney F135 turbofan, with 40,000 pounds of thrust – effortlessly pushed the F-35 skyward.
The flight of the conventional takeoff and landing (CTOL) F-35 variant began at 12:44 p.m. CST at Lockheed Martin in Fort Worth, Texas, when the jet lifted off and began a climb-out to 15,000 feet. Beesley then performed a series of maneuvers to test aircraft handling and the operation of the engine and subsystems. He returned for a landing at 1:19 p.m CST. Two F 16s and an F/A-18 served as chase aircraft.
Originally posted by PhloydPhan
I do have one question: why is the Lightning flying with her gear up the whole time? I've tried to wrap my head around it, but no explanation I can come up with makes any sense...
The Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] F-35 Lightning II achieved another successful test flight today from the companyâ€™s Fort Worth, Texas, facility.
The F-35 Lightning II cruises over North Texas at 20,000 feet on Monday, Jan. 8. F-35 Chief Test Pilot Jon Beesley described the aircraft as "dazzling" as he put it through a battery of handling and propulsion tests on its second flight.
Link to High Rez
Approximately 10 minutes into the flight, Beesley retracted the landing gear and climbed from 15,000 to 20,000 feet to evaluate handling qualities and engine operation in the cruise mode at Mach 0.6 (~ 450 m.p.h.) and Mach 0.7 (~ 530 m.p.h.). The handling tests included rolls, turns, angle-of-attack changes and engine throttle changes. The flight lasted 62 minutes and was executed exactly as planned. It followed the aircraftâ€™s successful first flight on Dec. 15, when the F-35 demonstrated unprecedented engine performance and handling qualities.
Originally posted by Murcielago
Does anyone know when there will be a "B" varient flying?
The first test aircraft, an F-35A model AA-1, had its formal rollout on July 7, 2006. The F-35B STOVL's forced redesign for weight reasons has led to F-35 AA-1 being a unique airframe used to validate design, manufacturing, assembly and test processes. The first optimised-airframe F-35B STOVL is being assembled by Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and BAE Systems; it is scheduled to fly in February 2008. The first optimized-airframe F-35A will follow in August 2008, and the first F-35C carrier variant is scheduled for flight in January 2009. A total of 23 test aircraft are scheduled to be built for various purposes (15 flight, 7 non-flight, 1 radar signature).
High Rez Image
Originally posted by chinawhite
Originally posted by chinawhite
Is this the F-35 cockpit?
If it is, what happened to that big screened F-35 cockpit, was that just a concept?
Does anyone know which plane this cockpit belongs to?
Video: Lockheed Martin performs second and third handling and engine test flights, with landing gear retracted
The flights took place on 8 January and 10 January from the company's Fort Worth, Texas facility. F-35 chief test pilot Jon Beesley says the aircraft was "dazzling" as flew it over north Texas during handling and propulsion tests.
"The maturity of this highly integrated aircraft for its second flight is dazzling - when it's time to fly it is always ready and takes minimal time to get out of the chocks," he says.