Jun 1, 2015

Marine Corps F-35Bs depart USS Wasp after carrier tests

Six US Marine Corps F-35B have departed the amphibious assault ship USS Wasp following a one-and-a-half-week trial that included 108 test sorties and an F135 engine delivery from a V-22 Osprey as the first combat fighter squadron stationed in Yuma, Arizona, prepares to declare initial operational capability this July.
Each of the 10 F-35 pilots involved are now qualified for daytime carrier operations and another three have received their night-time flying qualifications.
The six aircraft have accumulated 85.5 hours of flight time collectively since arriving on the USS Wasp May 18.
The squadrons will now continue their land-based preparations with the aim of passing a final operational readiness assessment due to take place over a two-week period in July if all goes according to plan.
The first squadron will become operational with 10 short-takeoff-vertical-landing (STOVL) F-35Bs, including some that are still being modified to correct deficiencies identified during testing.

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