06 September 2011

Meet the F-35B: US Marine Corps' (Premier) Version of Lockheed-Martin's 'Lightning II'

The USMC's own Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) 
variant brings unique STOVL capabilities...


Descended from the X-35 prototype, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program is primarily funded by the US and UK in an effort to replace aging fleets across all services- lead contractor on the massive project being Lockheed Martin
F-35BJSF
To this point, only 13 test aircraft of all types have been constructed- most are in test/trainer service, and the stealthy single-seat, single-engine (Mach 1.6) fighters average $122M a copy. The Defense Department is planning to buy over 2400 planes, making it the most expensive defense program in US history... although they are expected to serve effectively as far into the future as 2040.


Yet while the RAF is predictably going with the same set-up as the USAF (F-35A), many were surprised to hear that UK Navy brass decided to buy the more conventional (and cheaper) carrier-landing F-35C -our own Navy's version- sacrificing the VTOL ability their own Harriers are famed for. The British are suffering woeful budgetary constraints, yet the Royal Navy has two very expensive new carriers under construction... seems they had to cut somewhere if they didn't want to scap one of those hulls.

photo: Aviation Intel
So the USAF version -with conventional take-off/landing- is dubbed F-35A, while the Navy's F-35C is set up for carriers. The Danish Air Force actually have one test plane already, while the Canadians, Israelis, and others will have their own types as well. 

But it's the United States Marine Corps who anxiously await the first deliveries of their advanced -and a bit more pricey- short/vertical take-off and landing (STOVL) F-35B, and this is the one that most closely resembles that famed British Harrier 'jump-jet' about to ride-off into history... this thing is really something else:

Lockheed Martin

photo: Defense Talk

photo: Air Ace

Lockheed Martin

Note: the USAF has also ordered 250 F-35Bs to complement 
their larger, more conventional F-35A fleet.

Specification on the three primary F-35 versions -here-



Semper Fi from on-high!


10 comments:

Woodsterman (Odie) said...

Oh boy! Where do I place my order?

Reaganite Republican said...

What do you have in mind, hovering over the local YWCA pool?

Me, I'd settle for a jet-pack lol

Red said...

How are we paying for this I wonder? Texas and LA have been financially crippled by this admin and Soros. Loans from China?

Reaganite Republican said...

We need 'em, that's all I know lol

Proof said...

Sweet!

Christopher - Conservative Perspective said...

Can't wait for Israel to get a few and see what they do with modifications, modifications that we always adapt that is.

Reaganite Republican said...

Oh yeah, that one is to be the F-35I... it's got their avionics and air-to-air missiles instead of ours, along with some other changes from what I read

Anonymous said...

Hi. Can the stovl version take off vertically with a mission load of fuel and weapons, or is it capable of short take off only? Can you send an answer to cttartar@yahoo.com

Shanksow said...

Check out this article about the F-35 series of fighter jets NOT going to be able to deal with 5th generation Russian fighter jets such as the SU-35 or the T-50 PAK-FA. ( http://www.f-16.net/news_article4416.html ).

Reaganite Republican said...

Yikes!

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