The F-35 made quite a statement at the 2017 Paris Air Show, performing a full aerobatic demonstration for all to see. Lockheed Martin’s F35A Lightning II is the conventional takeoff and landing (CTOL) version in the series. This means it’s well-suited for standard air force bases.
According to Lockheed Martin, “The F-35A’s advanced sensor package is designed to gather and distribute more information than any fighter in history, giving operators a decisive advantage over all adversaries. Its tremendous processing power, open architecture, sophisticated sensors, information fusion, and flexible communication links make the F-35 an indispensable tool in future homeland defense, joint and coalition irregular warfare, and major combat operations.”
The fifth-generation aircraft was declared combat-ready by Commander of Air Combat Command General Hawk Carlisle in August 2016. This was a long time in the making, since the beginnings of this aircraft stem all the way back to 1997, when Lockheed Martin was selected to participate in the Joint Strike Fighter concept demonstration phase. After their X-35 fighter was chosen as the winner in October 2001, they teamed up with BAE Systems and Northrop Grumman to start production.
The first successful flight of the F-35 dates back to December 2006, however, it hasn’t been a smooth flight to the present day. The F-35 program has suffered through cost overruns and development delays, which has welcomed healthy criticism. With that in mind, the Paris aerial demonstration targeted interest from both the public and representatives of military forces.
You can watch the full aerobatic display in the video below.
Filed Under: Aerospace + defense