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F-35 clears test hurdle with weapons flight

written by australianaviation.com.au | February 21, 2012
An F-35A test aircraft has made its first flight with wing-mounted missiles. (Lockheed Martin)

The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter has flown its first test mission fitted with external weapons.

The load for the test flight from at Edwards Air Force Base in California included a pair of air-to-air AIM-9X missiles mounted on outboard wing stations of an F-35A, in addition to two 2000lb guided bombs and two medium range AIM-120 air-to-air missiles, according to F-35 maker Lockheed Martin. No weapons were fired during the mission.

The F-35A is designed to carry up to 8170kg  on 10 weapon stations, including four stations in a pair of internal weapons bays designed to maximise stealth.

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