First Italian F-35

The first delivery of an F-35 outside the United States happened December 3 at the F-35 Final Assembly and Check Out (FACO) facility in Cameri, Italy. The first Italian F-35A Lightning II for the Italian armed forces, known as AL-1, marked a production milestone for Italy’s national defense and aerospace industry.

Lieutenant General Pasquale Preziosa, Chief of the Italian Air Force, welcomes the first Italian F-35A into the Italian armed forces at a December 3 acceptance ceremony in Cameri
Lieutenant General Pasquale Preziosa, Chief of the Italian Air Force, welcomes the first Italian F-35A into the Italian armed forces at a December 3 acceptance ceremony in Cameri

«When Leonardo DaVinci first envisioned human flight as an Italian creation, there is no way he could have imagined what we have here today», said Lieutenant General Chris Bogdan, F-35 Joint Program Executive Officer. «The F-35 aircraft built here in Cameri will take flight on the wings of Italian craftsmanship, ingenuity, and skill and will help build the first global fleet of fifth generation fighters».

Italy is the sixth nation to receive an F-35 joining Australia, Netherlands, Norway, United Kingdom and the United States with jets in their service’s inventory.

The F-35s being assembled and delivered at the Italian FACO will transition to Italy’s Aeronautica Militare (Air Force) and Marina Militare (Navy). AL-1 first rolled out of the production facility in March with first flight September 7, one month ahead of schedule. Italy’s first two pilots have begun F-35 flight training at Luke Air Force Base, Arizona, where Cameri-built F-35As will be delivered in 2016 to support international pilot training.

«This is a monumental achievement for the F-35 program», said Lorraine Martin, Lockheed Martin F-35 Program General Manager. «The F-35 provides Italy’s aerospace industry with high technology work, ensuring the future health and competitiveness for their defense industry. To date, Italian industry has contracts worth more than $1 billion, along with opportunities for additional work over the life of the program».

The first two operational F-35A Lightning II aircraft arrive at Hill Air Force Base, Utah, September 2, 2015. The jets were piloted by Colonel David Lyons, 388th Fighter Wing commander, and Lieutenant Colonel Yosef Morris, 34th Fighter Squadron director of operations. Hill will receive up to 70 additional combat-coded F-35s on a staggered basis through 2019. The jets will be flown and maintained by Hill Airmen assigned to the active-duty 388th Fighter Wing and its Reserve component 419th Fighter Wing (U.S. Air Force photo/Alex R. Lloyd)
The first two operational F-35A Lightning II aircraft arrive at Hill Air Force Base, Utah, September 2, 2015. The jets were piloted by Colonel David Lyons, 388th Fighter Wing commander, and Lieutenant Colonel Yosef Morris, 34th Fighter Squadron director of operations. Hill will receive up to 70 additional combat-coded F-35s on a staggered basis through 2019. The jets will be flown and maintained by Hill Airmen assigned to the active-duty 388th Fighter Wing and its Reserve component 419th Fighter Wing (U.S. Air Force photo/Alex R. Lloyd)

 

Specifications

Length 51.4 feet/15.7 m
Height 14.4 feet/4.38 m
Wingspan 35 feet/10.7 m
Wing area 460 feet2/42.7 m2
Horizontal tail span 22.5 feet/6.86 m
Weight empty 29,300 lbs/13,290 kg
Internal fuel capacity 18,250 lbs/8,278 kg
Weapons payload 18,000 lbs/8,160 kg
Maximum weight 70,000 lbs class/31,751 kg
Standard internal weapons load Two AIM-120C air-to-air missiles
Two 2,000-pound/907 kg GBU-31 JDAM (Joint Direct Attack Munition) guided bombs
Propulsion (uninstalled thrust ratings) F135-PW-100
Maximum Power (with afterburner) 43,000 lbs/191,3 kN/19,507 kgf
Military Power (without afterburner) 28,000 lbs/128,1 kN/13,063 kgf
Engine Length 220 in/5.59 m
Engine Inlet Diameter 46 in/1.17 m
Engine Maximum Diameter 51 in/1.30 m
Bypass Ratio 0.57
Overall Pressure Ratio 28
Speed (full internal weapons load) Mach 1.6 (~1,043 knots/1,200 mph/1,931 km/h)
Combat radius (internal fuel) >590 NM/679 miles/1,093 km
Range (internal fuel) >1,200 NM/1,367 miles/2,200 km
Maximum g-rating 9.0
F-35A test pilot Maj Charles «Flak» Trickey fires the first aerial gun test burst of the GAU-22/A 25-mm gun from F-35A aircraft AF-2
F-35A test pilot Maj Charles «Flak» Trickey fires the first aerial gun test burst of the GAU-22/A 25-mm gun from F-35A aircraft AF-2

Leave a Reply