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Lockheed Martin F-35A fighter aircraft completes first night refueling mission 2703121

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World Aviation Industry News - Lockheed Martin
 
 
Lockheed Martin F-35A fighter aircraft completes first night refueling mission.
 

The first night refueling in the history of the Lockheed Martin F-35 program was completed Thursday at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. Piloted by U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Peter Vitt, AF-4, an F-35A conventional takeoff and landing variant, rendezvoused with an Air Force KC-135 tanker and successfully received fuel through the F-35’s boom receptacle.

     
The first night refueling in the history of the Lockheed Martin F-35 program was completed Thursday at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. Piloted by U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Peter Vitt, AF-4, an F-35A conventional takeoff and landing variant, rendezvoused with an Air Force KC-135 tanker and successfully received fuel through the F-35’s boom receptacle.
The first F-35 fighter aircraft night refueling mission, March 22, 2012 at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif.

     
Vitt’s sortie lasted more than three hours. In addition to qualifying with the KC-135, the F-35 Integrated Test Force at Edwards AFB will also conduct night refueling tests with the KC-10.

The Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II is a family of single-seat, single-engine, fifth generation multirole fighters under development to perform ground attack, reconnaissance, and air defense missions with stealth capability. The F-35 has three main models; the F-35A is a conventional takeoff and landing variant, the F-35B is a short take off and vertical-landing variant, and the F-35C is a carrier-based variant.

While the United States is the primary customer and financial backer, the United Kingdom, Italy, the Netherlands, Canada, Turkey, Australia, Norway and Denmark have agreed to contribute for the development costs of the program.