Thursday, November 12, 2009

Vought preps for F-35C drop tests

DALLAS - Vought Aircraft Industries has taken possession of an F-35C Lightning II joint strike fighter test article from Lockheed Martin and will perform full-scale drop testing in early 2010. The tests are to verify the strength of the F-35C Navy variant landing gear and airframe structure for carrier landing operations. Pre-test aircraft preparation includes the installation of special drop test fixtures, test systems and instrumentation. Actual drop testing is currently estimated to start in January and continue through April at the Vought Structures Test Lab in Dallas. (Source: Vought, 11/11/09) Gulf Coast note: The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Training Center is located at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. Pilots for all variants will be trained there.