The US Navy’s first F-35C fighter jet squadron deployed to the carrier earlier last month.
The first Marine Corps F-35C squadron is working towards the first carrier deployment scheduled for early next year.
Marines in this squadron told insiders what stealth jets mean for US airlines.
The US Navy aircraft carrier has begun deploying F-35C stealth fighters. The aircraft, which one fighter pilot calls a “game changer,” states that it makes US aircraft carriers even more deadly.
NS The first U.S. Navy aircraft carrier deployed on the F-35C Lightning II Joint Strike FighterA variant designed for aircraft carrier operations was USS Carl Vinson, who left San Diego last month. Recently sailed the South China Sea The Navy’s first F-35C squadron, the Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 147, “Argonauts” was on board.
Marines are also participating in the game. Marine Corps Attack Squadron (VMFA) 314 “Black Knight”, The first F-35C squadron of the corpsIt reached full operational capacity in July and is currently preparing for the first aircraft carrier deployment.
The squadron has been training for a long time as part of Career Air Wing 9 on the USS Abraham Lincoln and at the Navy Air Base Fallon, home of TOPGUN, the Navy’s elite aerial combat school, early next year. We are preparing for the deployment to be started.
The most expensive weapons program in US military history, the F-35 has a setback share in development. But pilots are still excited about what the aircraft can do, one of the “Black Knights” told insiders.
“This is where I want to be”
Operations Officer and VMFA314 pilot Major Mark Dion has moved from the F / A-18 Super Hornet to the F-35 and recently told insiders that the 5th generation fighter is definitely what he wants to fly. “The F-35C is much better than the F / A-18,” he said.
“This jet gives you more situational awareness,” he explained. “The fusion of all these sensors that Jet has only gives the pilot more information to make decisions, make better decisions, make them faster and more deadly. . “
“If we’re intercepting there, the F-35 is what you want to get in,” he said.
“It gives me some sort of undetectable ability, or at least the ability to stay where the enemy can’t necessarily use weapons against me. This is F / A-18, their fourth. It wasn’t really in the generation. Aircraft. ” “That’s a big advantage of this jet.”
He added, “If you decide to join an enemy fighter, that close combat ACM will work.” [air combat maneuvering].. It works very well. I would rather be in F-35. I skipped both, and this is where I want to be. “
“It only makes your career much more deadly.”
Dion also flew the F-35B, a short takeoff and vertical landing variant for the Marines that can fight from runways and amphibious assault ships. He was actually part of the first US F-35 combat deployment, I saw a pilot flying an F-35B from USS Essex and going on strike in Afghanistan..
“It was amazing,” he told the insider, saying it was something he always remembers.
“It’s huge, like the first one, and actually with the Marine Corps. [Department of Defense] In general. “
Asked whether he prefers the Hornet, F-35B, or F-35C, Dion said his favorite aircraft was the C.
The F-35C “provides far more capabilities” than the B, he said. It has more fuel, allows more time to stay, and has the ability to carry a variety of weapons.
“Jet planes bring a lot of power to the Marines and the Navy,” he said. -In the 18’s, it only makes a career much more deadly. “
For example, you can use a data link to fight the Carrier Air Wing as a single force. In combat, the F-35 is better read on the battlefield and can relay target information to the F / A-18. The F / A-18 has a more powerful missile loadout than its 5th generation counterpart. Each aircraft enhances the combat power of other aircraft.
Dion described the F-35’s ability to enhance the carrier air wing, project power, avoid high-end threats, and mitigate assets close to peers as a “game changer.”
“Many efforts and sacrifices”
VMFA 314 received its first F-35C on January 21, 2020. Achieved initial operational capacity in December 2020, And was Fully functional by this summer..
“The VMFA314 Marines have built a squadron of the best DoD aviation assets we have over the last two years, built a squadron with that jet, and for a very short period of time if needed,” he said.
“The hard work and sacrifice we’ve spent in the last two years has allowed us to be here now, continue to succeed, and eventually leave the country early next year,” he said. Deploy and be ready to protect. “
“It was amazing,” he said. “It’s great to be part of it and see it.”
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