The first international Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II, designated BK-1, and destined for the United Kingdom, rolled out of the airframer’s Fort Worth, Texas factory Sunday evening. The United Kingdom Ministry of Defence will use the short takeoff/vertical landing (STOVL) jet, for training and operational tests.
BK-1 will undergo functional fuel system checks before being transported to the flight line for ground and flight tests in the coming months. The jet is scheduled to be delivered in 2012.
In October 2010, Israel selected the F-35A as the Israel Air Force’s next generation fighter and is scheduled to receive the F-35 through the U.S. government’s Foreign Military Sales process. Additionally, Japan and the Republic of Korea are currently considering the F-35 to recapitalize their fighter fleets.
The F-35 Lightning II is a 5th Generation fighter, combining advanced stealth with fighter speed and agility, fully fused sensor information, network-enabled operations and advanced sustainment. Lockheed Martin is developing the F-35 with its principal industrial partners, Northrop Grumman and BAE Systems.