Tuesday, September 27, 2011

F-35 inches closer to training role

Four F-35s at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., could be flying next month, according to Aviation Week. F-35 program officials are awaiting a clearance from the procurement community to begin flight operations at Eglin, a step closer to pilot training. The Air Force’s Aeronautical Systems Center in Ohio, which oversees procurement of service aircraft, are reviewing data collected during a period of "maturity flights" using two conventional-takeoff-and-landing F-35As at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. Tom Burbage, executive vice president of F-35 integration at Lockheed Martin, says he hopes to have the first F-35 flying at Eglin by Oct. 31. The four F-35As at Eglin right now are supporting maintenance training. (Source: Aviation Week, 09/27/11)