Ninth development F-35 flies

written by australianaviation.com.au | July 8, 2010
AF-3 makes its first flight. (Lockheed Martin)

The ninth F-35 flight test aircraft and the second to be fitted with a mission system avionics package, F-35A AF-3 made its first flight on July 6.

“AF-3 is very much like the first production F-35s we will deliver to the US Air Force later this year,” said Doug Pearson, Lockheed Martin vice president of F-35 test and verification. “AF-3 will be the workhorse for demonstrating the lethal 5th generation combat mission systems capability that will reside in all F-35s.”

The 42 minute flight, which took off at 6:20pm, saw test pilot Bill Gigliotti undertake a series of flying quality tests before it had to be cut short due to storm activity in the area.

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