F-35A previously conducted a live fire external weapons test

Lockheed Martin has announced that the F-35A fighter jet has conducted its first live fire weapons test. Test pilot Air Force Captain Logan Lamping fired an AIM-120 AMRAAM
 radar-seeking missile from the F-35’s internal weapons bay. The aircraft had previously conducted a successful external weapons test.

The target the missile was fired against was a drone in restricted military sea test range airspace. The test was able to confirm that the F-35 identified and targeted the drone with its sensors and successfully passed the track information to the missile allowing the weapon to engage the drone.

Lockheed Martin says that after launch, the missile was able to successfully acquire the target and follow the target using an intercept flight profile. Moments before the missile was going to impact and destroy the drone, officials sent a self-destruct signal to the missile to allow the drone to be used in future tests.

"This successful missile launch marks the first live-fire weapons test and is an initial demonstration of the air-to-air combat capability the F-35 will bring to the U.S. Military and our International Partners" said Charlie Wagner, weapons team lead for the F-35 Joint Program Office. "This test represents the culmination of many years of careful planning by combined government and contractor teams.  It is one test, with many more to come, to ensure operators will receive the combat capability they need to execute their mission and return home safely."

The first successful air weapons test with the F-35A came only a day after the F-35B version of the aircraft conducted a successful air-to-ground weapons test by dropping a 500-pound Guided Bomb Unit-12 Paveway II laser guided bomb over the test range at Edwards Air Force Base.

Source: F-35

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