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  • A U.S. Air Force F-15C Eagle assigned to the 67th Fighter Squadron receives liquid oxygen servicing at Kadena Air Base, Japan, Nov. 30, 2022. Since 1979, the F-15 Eagle has ensured air superiority for the U.S. and its allies across the Indo-Pacific Command area of responsibility. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Jessi Roth)
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    A Japan Air Self-Defense Force C-130H Hercules assigned to the 401st Tactical Airlift Squadron arrives at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, Nov. 30, 2022, during Operation Christmas Drop 2022. Since 2015, OCD envolved into a multinational event supported in previous iterations by forces from the United States, Japan Air Self-Defense Force, Royal Australian Air Force, Royal New Zealand Air Force and Republic of Korea Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Yasuo Osakabe)

    A U.S. Air Force F-15C Eagle assigned to the 18th Wing breaks away from a KC-135 Stratotanker assigned to the 909th Air Refueling Squadron after conducting aerial refueling over the Pacific Ocean, Nov. 30, 2022. The KC-135 delivers global aerial refueling capability to support joint and coalition aircraft throughout the Indo-Pacific region. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Tylir Meyer)

    A U.S. Air Force F-22A Raptor assigned to the 3rd Wing receives fuel from a KC-135 Stratotanker assigned to the 909th Air Refueling Squadron over the Pacific Ocean, Nov. 30, 2022. Kadena’s ability to rapidly deploy a variety of aircraft demonstrates its commitment to the safety and security of the Indo-Pacific. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Tylir Meyer)

    Two Israeli air force F-16 Fighting Falcons gather in formation behind a U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker assigned to the 340th Expeditionary Air Refueling Squadron, as part of a bilateral exercise in the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility, Nov. 30, 2022. The exercise demonstrated fighter aircraft integration and escort as well as refueling operations as part of the first of several exercises to maintain the ironclad commitment and bilateral aerial capability between the U.S. and Israeli air forces. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kirby Turbak)

    U.S. Air Force F-15E Strike Eagles and Israeli air force F-35 Lightening II fly in formation as part of a bilateral exercise in the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility, Nov. 29, 2022. (U.S. Air Force courtesy photo)

    A U.S. Air Force F-15C Eagle assigned to the 44th Fighter Squadron takes off at Kadena Air Base, Japan, Dec. 1, 2022. As part of its modernization plan, the U.S. Air Force is retiring its aging fleet of F-15C/D Eagle aircraft that have been in service for more than four decades. The Department of Defense will continue to maintain a steady-state fighter presence at Kadena by temporarily deploying newer and more advanced aircraft to backfill the F-15s as they retrograde to the U.S. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Moses Taylor)
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    An F-15C Eagle assigned to the 44th Fighter Squadron taxis down the flightline for the final time at Kadena Air Base, Japan, Dec. 1, 2022. As a part of its modernization plan, the 18th Wing is retiring its aging fleet of F-15C/D Eagles that have been in service for more than four decades. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Jessi Roth)

    A U.S. Air Force B-1B Lancer assigned to the 37th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron flies over the Pacific Ocean, Nov. 19, 2022. Aerial operations contribute to Joint Force lethality and help deter aggression in the Indo-Pacific by demonstrating the U.S. Air Force’s ability to operate anywhere in the world in support of the National Defense Strategy. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Jessi Roth)
     

  • An 8th Operations Group F-16 Fighting Falcon flies during a training event in the skies near Kunsan Air Base, Republic of Korea, Dec. 1, 2022. The F-16 is a multi-capable, highly maneuverable fighter aircraft that poses a great offensive threat to any adversarial aircraft and has been a major component of thousands of combat operations since Sept. 11, 2001. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Sadie Colbert)

    A two-ship of 8th Operations Group F-16 Fighting Falcons fly during a training event in the skies near Kunsan Air Base, Republic of Korea, Dec. 1, 2022. During the training, pilots from the 35th and 80th Fighter Squadrons executed quick-response tactics, honing their jet fighting capabilities to support a free and open Indo-Pacific theater. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Sadie Colbert)

    PHILIPPINE SEA (Dec. 2, 2022) An E-2D Hawkeye, attached to the Tiger Tails of Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 125, launches from the flight deck of the U.S. Navy’s only forward-deployed aircraft carrier, USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76), in the Philippine Sea, Dec. 2. E-2D Hawkeyes perform tactical airborne, early warning missions to provide valuable information to Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 5 as it plans and executes operations. Ronald Reagan, the flagship of CSG 5, provides a combat-ready force that protects and defends the United States, and supports Alliances, partnerships and collective maritime interests in the Indo-Pacific region. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Oswald Felix Jr.)
    Deployed Aircraft Carrier USS Ronald Reagan 5XDCfmBJSUyXTNTcgxpTo1
    PHILIPPINE SEA (Dec. 2, 2022) An EA-18G Growler, attached to the Shadowhawks of Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 141, flies over the flight deck of the U.S. Navy’s only forward-deployed aircraft carrier, USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76), in the Philippine Sea, Dec. 2. The primary role of EA-18G Growlers is to disrupt the ability to communicate between units in combat through the use of electronic warfare. Ronald Reagan, the flagship of Carrier Strike Group 5, provides a combat-ready force that protects and defends the United States, and supports Alliances, partnerships and collective maritime interests in the Indo-Pacific region. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Eric Stanton)
    Deployed Aircraft Carrier USS Ronald Reagan
    PHILIPPINE SEA (Nov. 29, 2022) An F/A-18E Super Hornet, attached to the Dambusters of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 195, launches on the flight deck of the U.S. Navy’s only forward-deployed aircraft carrier, USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76), during flight operations in the Philippine Sea, Nov. 29. The Dambusters earned their nickname on May 1, 1951 when the squadron's Skyraiders destroyed the heavily defended and strategically positioned Hwacheon Dam in North Korea with aerial torpedoes by making precise low level runs. Ronald Reagan, the flagship of Carrier Strike Group 5, provides a combat-ready force that protects and defends the United States, and supports Alliances, partnerships and collective maritime interests in the Indo-Pacific region. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Eric Stanton)
    Deployed Aircraft Carrier USS Ronald Reagan
    An E-8C Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS) aircraft takes off for a Weapons School Integration mission at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, Nov. 28, 2022. The E-8C JSTARS is an airborne battle management, command and control, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance platform. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Josey Blades)

    A B-1 Lancer, assigned to Dyess Air Force Base, takes off for a Weapons School Integration (WSINT) mission at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, Nov. 28, 2022. WSINT tests the capabilities of pilots and crew members to increase efficiency and strengthen teamwork. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Josey Blades

    An A-10 Thunderbolt II takes off for a Weapons School Integration mission at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, Nov. 28, 2022. The A-10 is a simple, effective and survivable twin-engine jet aircraft that can be used against light maritime attack aircraft and all ground targets, including tanks and other armored vehicles. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Josey Blades)

    São José dos Campos, Brazil, December 2, 2022 – Embraer confirms that Spanish airline Binter is the customer of a new firm order for five E195-E2 aircraft announced this week to be delivered in 2023 and 2024. These aircraft will be added to the fleet of five jets already incorporated as of 2019 when Binter became the first European customer of the E195-E2. The list price value of the contract is US$389.4 million, which will be added to Embraer’s Q4 backlog.

    Follow us on Twitter: @Embraer

    About Embraer

    Embraer is a global aerospace company headquartered in Brazil. It manufactures aircraft for Commercial and Executive aviation, Defense & Security, and Agricultural customers. The company also provides after-sales services & support through a worldwide network of wholly-owned entities and authorized agents.

    Since it was founded in 1969, Embraer has delivered more than 8,000 aircraft. On average, about every 10 seconds an aircraft manufactured by Embraer takes off somewhere in the world. The aircraft transport over 145 million passengers per year.

    Embraer is the leading manufacturer of commercial jets up to 150 seats and is the main exporter of high value-added goods in Brazil. The company maintains industrial units, offices, service and parts distribution centers across the Americas, Africa, Asia, and Europe.
    Binter
    Rome, 02 December 2022
    The Italian Army’s UH-90A (NATO’s designation for the Italian Army’s NH90 TTH) multirole helicopter programme marked a major achievement with the completion of deliveries on 25 November. The 60th and final aircraft, assembled at Leonardo’s Venice Tessera facility, was handed over to the operator during an official ceremony in presence of representatives from the Italian Army and its Aviation unit, Italian Secretariat General of Defence / National Armaments Directorate, NAHEMA (NATO Helicopter Management Agency), NHIndustries, and Leonardo.
    90A Italian
    The Italian Army is one of the first and largest NH90 operators, with 31,096 flight hours logged in Italy and abroad to date. The UH-90As have played a critical role for years delivering outstanding operational capabilities, both in-country and abroad in demanding conditions with impressive availability rates and mission effectiveness. The fleet is distributed over three main Italian Army Aviation’s bases and its versatile configuration enables a range of missions, such as tactical troop transport, logistics support, special operations, cargo resupply and hoist operations, MEDEVAC (Medical Evacuation) and light tactical vehicle transport. The aircraft has also supported disaster relief and emergency response operations in years. In recent years, the collaboration between the Italian Army and Leonardo has further evolved with the capability to deliver NH90 crew training to other operators.

    Carlo Gualdaroni, Chief Business Officer at Leonardo Helicopters, said: “We’re extremely excited to achieve this crucial milestone with the Italian Army. This result is testament to the long-established effective partnership between industry and the operator to deliver the required capabilities and to support its use, thus maximising the advantages of its outstanding performance and technologies. We’re committed to staying closer and closer to the Italian Army to ensure its UH-90A fleet accomplishes its missions at its best in any condition now and into the future.” 

    Leonardo's Venice Tessera facility, covering 24,000 m2, is the Italian final assembly of the NH90s for various operators, including the Italian Army and the Italian Navy. The new plant started assembly of NH90s in 2010 and delivered its first aircraft in June 2011. The Venice Tessera plant is also playing an important role to deliver retrofits to the in-service helicopters for various operators.
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    Deployed from October 24 to November 25 as part of Operation CHAMMAL, the C-135 refueling aircraft conducted more than twenty flight refueling missions for the benefit of the Rafale of the projected airbase (BAP) in the Levant and other coalition aircraft.

    About twenty aviators from Istres air base have been deployed. This contingent consisted of pilots, navigators, in-flight supply operators and mechanics. The C-135 helped ensure other aircraft remain above the Operation INHERENT RESOLVE (OIR) activity area and complete their intelligence and air support missions.

    The C-135 has the capacity to support almost all coalition aircraft (hunters and carriers). In addition to his refueling missions for the French Rafale, he also supplied American F-15s, F-16s and a C-130 Gunship. The C-135 night refueling of a C-130 was a first for these aircraft.
    (Photo courtesy of the Armée de l'Air et de l'Espace)
    Operation CHAMMAL
     

  • PALMDALE, Calif. (AFNS) --

    In a tangible display of the nation’s resolve in meeting security threats, the U.S. Air Force, on Dec. 2, publicly unveiled the B-21 Raider, the first new, long-range strike bomber in a generation and an aircraft specifically designed to be the multifunctional backbone of the modernized bomber fleet.

    While the B-21 isn’t expected to be operational and introduced into service for several more years, the formal unveiling ceremony hosted by Northrop Grumman Corporation at its production facilities in California is a significant milestone in the Air Force’s effort to modernize combat capabilities. The B-21 is designed to be a more capable and adaptable, state-of-the-art aircraft that will gradually replace aging B-1 Lancer and B-2 Spirit bombers now in service.

    According to design requirements, the B-21 is a long-range, highly survivable stealth bomber capable of delivering a mix of conventional and nuclear munitions. The aircraft will play a major role supporting national security objectives and assuring U.S. allies and partners across the globe.

    Senior defense officials note that the National Defense Strategy and other analyses make clear the need for the B-21 and its capabilities.

    “The B-21 Raider is the first strategic bomber in more than three decades,” Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin said during the ceremony. “It is a testament to America’s enduring advantages in ingenuity and innovation. And it’s proof of the Department’s long-term commitment to building advanced capabilities that will fortify America’s ability to deter aggression, today and into the future.”

    The B-21, Austin said, “is deterrence the American way. … This isn’t just another airplane. It’s not just another acquisition. … It’s the embodiment of America’s determination to defend the republic that we all love. It’s a testament to our strategy of deterrence—with the capabilities to back it up, every time and everywhere.”
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    The world and its threats have changed dramatically since the last new bomber was introduced in 1988, as has the way the Air Force, other U.S. military services and allies work together as a joint, multi-domain force. Senior defense officials say that new thinking and innovation are needed to meet the new and emerging threats.

    “That innovative spirit is sitting behind us right now,” Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. CQ Brown, Jr., told reporters shortly before the plane was unveiled.

    “You think about what we're able to do in the amount of time with the workforce here from Northrop Grumman, the collaboration with the United States Air Force to bring in a capability using a digital approach which is new and different from anything we've done any major program, that's part of the Raider spirit,” he said.

    The B-21 is the first new bomber to be introduced since the end of the Cold War. Air Force officials envision an ultimate fleet of at least 100 aircraft with an average procurement unit cost requirement of $692 million (base year 2022 dollars).

    “When I think about accelerate change, this is exactly what it means to be able to bring this kind of capability very quickly and be able to adapt it vis-à-vis the threat,” Brown said in his meeting with reporters. “And so today, I'm really excited that we bring the B-21 Raider into the future. It'll be the backbone of our bomber fleet.”

    The aircraft is designed with updated stealth qualities and mission flexibility that senior leaders in the Air Force and across the Department of Defense say are necessary to achieve the U.S. goal of achieving integrated deterrence, and if necessary, capabilities required to successfully respond to aggression anywhere in the world at any time.

    The specific B-21 unveiled Dec. 2 is one of six under production. Each is considered a test aircraft, but each is being built on the same production line, using the same tools, processes, and technicians who will build production aircraft. This approach has enabled production engineers and technicians to capture lessons learned and apply them directly to follow-on aircraft, driving home a focus on repeatability, producibility and quality.

    The timing for first flight will be data and event, not date driven.

    While the precise date when the B-21 will enter service is unknown, basing decisions have been made. Ellsworth AFB, South Dakota will become the first Main Operating Base and formal training unit for the B-21. Whiteman AFB, Missouri, and Dyess AFB, Texas, are the preferred locations for the remaining home bases. Each will receive aircraft as they become available.

    In addition to building a bomber with state-of-the-art technology and capabilities, Air Force officials emphasized the focus on containing costs while simultaneously allowing for maximum flexibility.

    For example, the B-21 is designed with an open systems architecture that will enable rapid future capability integration to keep pace with the highly contested threat environment.

    The B-21 design is based on firm requirements with existing and mature technology to control program costs. In fact, the plane’s prime contractor, Northrop Grumman, has been directed to use production processes, production tooling, and a production workforce that ensures sustained and seamless production while avoiding unnecessary costs.

    “Leveraging innovative manufacturing techniques, open systems architectures and active management allows us to integrate new technology as it matures and ensures the B-21 can adapt to future threats and be successful when and where we need it,” Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics Andrew P. Hunter, said.
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  • A Republic of Korea Air Force C-130H Hercules takes off at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, Dec. 2, 2022, during Operation Christmas Drop 2022. Before start Operation Christmas Drop 2022, Aircrerws from the U.S. Air Force, Japan Air Self-Defense Force, Royal Australia Air Force, Royal New Zealand Air Force, and Republic of Korea Air Force conducted dynamic delivery airdrop mission over the Pacific Ocean. Aircrew delivering these airdrops worked to hone skills needed for effective dynamic delivery to non-surveyed drop zones, a method that incorporates real-time decision making within a challenging mission environment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Yasuo Osakabe)
     2 2022
    A Japan Air Self-Defense Force C-130H Hercules taxis down the flightline at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, Dec. 2, 2022, during Operation Christmas Drop 2022. Before start Operation Christmas Drop 2022, Aircrerws from the U.S. Air Force, Japan Air Self-Defense Force, Royal Australia Air Force, Royal New Zealand Air Force, and Republic of Korea Air Force conducted dynamic delivery airdrop mission over the Pacific Ocean. Aircrew delivering these airdrops worked to hone skills needed for effective dynamic delivery to non-surveyed drop zones, a method that incorporates real-time decision making within a challenging mission environment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Yasuo Osakabe)
     2 2022
    U.S. Air Force Capt. “Brave”, left, 77th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron F-16 pilot, and Royal Netherlands Air Force Maj. “Turbo” Scherders, right, 77th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron director of operations, fly in formation over an undisclosed location within the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility, Dec. 2, 2022. As part of the Foreign Exchange Officer (FEO) program, the Dutch instructor pilot is flying with the Gamblers in support of Operation Inherent Resolve, ensuring regional security and strengthening partnerships with NATO allies. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Gerald R. Willis)
    16 Pilot And Royal Netherlands Air Force
    Zürich, The Swiss Air-Rescue Service Rega has ordered a second batch of 12 five-bladed H145 helicopters to be operated from its mountain bases. They will replace the current fleet of AW109SP helicopters. This new order follows an initial contract for nine H145s, announced in March this year. By 2026, Rega will operate an all-Airbus fleet consisting of 21 five-bladed H145s.

    “To effectively operate life-saving air rescue services in Switzerland, we understand that the ability to perform optimally at altitude is paramount,” says Bruno Even, CEO of Airbus Helicopters. “The five-bladed H145 landed on the Aconcagua in Chile, a mountain that is nearly 7,000 metres high - no other twin engine helicopter has ever achieved this feat. That is why we are especially proud that Rega has put its faith in the five-bladed H145 and decided to make it the only helicopter type in its fleet to perform such critical missions.”

    “By selecting the five-bladed H145, we are ensuring that Rega will continue being able to provide its patients with reliable and professional medical assistance by air for the next 15 years,” says Ernst Kohler, CEO of Rega.

    The five-bladed H145s will come equipped with a state-of-the-art navigation system, especially tailored to the operator’s needs that will enhance the mission capabilities and the safety of operations. The system will use new capabilities of the Flight Management System GTN750 Xi by Garmin. It will integrate and control a multi-sensor system that provides highly accurate and reliable navigation capacities. Even in the event of GPS signal loss, the helicopter will navigate safely thanks to Thales’ inertial navigation system. This solution will further boost the navigation performance in low IFR conditions and allows the helicopter to be certified as navigation procedure RNP-AR 0.1, which is the most accurate navigation procedure in the helicopter environment. The configuration also includes a new hoist by Vincorion that is being certified on the five-bladed H145, ensuring highest safety standards.

    Rega operates 14 HEMS stations in Switzerland. Last year, the helicopter crews carried out 14,330 missions, including transporting 471 COVID patients.

    The new version of Airbus’ best-selling H145 light twin-engine helicopter adds a new, innovative five-bladed rotor to the multi-mission aircraft, increasing the useful load of the helicopter by 150kg. The simplicity of the new bearingless main rotor design also eases maintenance operations, further improving the benchmark serviceability and reliability of the H145, while improving ride comfort for both passengers and crew. In total, there are more than 1,600 H145 family helicopters in service, logging a total of more than seven million flight hours. Powered by two Safran Arriel 2E engines, the H145 is equipped with full authority digital engine control (FADEC) and the Helionix digital avionics suite. It includes a high performance 4-axis autopilot, increasing safety and reducing pilot workload. Its particularly low acoustic footprint makes the H145 the quietest helicopter in its class, while its CO2 emissions are the lowest amongst its competitors.
    REGA 145
    Seoul, 30 November 2022 – Korean Air has become a new operator of the best-selling A320 Family, following the recent delivery of the first of 30 aircraft on order with Airbus. Korean Air’s A321neo features the new Airbus Airspace cabin, bringing premium widebody features to the single aisle market.

    KAL’s A321neo aircraft are powered by Pratt & Whitney GTF™ engines. The A321neo brings a 25% reduction in fuel consumption and emissions per seat compared with previous generation competing aircraft.

    This enables Korean Air to benefit from enhanced efficiency and be able to deliver on its sustainability objectives, whilst reducing operating costs.

    Korean Air becomes the first airline in Asia to take delivery of an A321neo with the complete Airspace cabin. This features new lighting and ambiance systems, larger overhead bins and full connectivity throughout, giving passengers the highest levels of in-flight comfort. The Airspace cabin also offers hygienic space and antimicrobial surfaces in all lavatories.

    For its A321neo fleet, Korean Air has specified a high comfort two-class layout, with eight full-flat seats in Business Class and 174 in Economy.

    KAL is Airbus’ longest standing customer from outside Europe having placed its first order in 1974. The airline's fleet currently includes 50 Airbus aircraft, comprising the A220, A330 and A380. In the single aisle segment, the A321neo will complement the A220 fleet at the airline enabling maximum operational flexibility.

    At the end of October 2022, the A320neo Family had received over 8,500 orders from over 130 customers worldwide.
    KAL 1st A321neo
    29.11.2022
    The experimental MC-21 aircraft of Irkut Corporation (part of PJSC UAC of Rostec State Corporation), previously painted in the livery of Rossiya Airlines (Aeroflot Group), has arrived at Flight Test and Development Complex of Yakovlev Design Bureau, where it will be prepared for joint pilot operation.
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    As part of the MC-21 joint pilot operation program, Irkut Corporation and Rossiya Airlines plan to train command and instructor personnel and instructor pilots, gain experience in air transportation on standard airliner routes, and also work out operating procedures.
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    In total, three experimental MC-21 aircraft will take part in the program, which will be based at the Ramenskoye airfield, where Flight Test and Development Complex of Yakovlev Design Bureau is located.

    The pilot operation program is currently being coordinated with the relevant federal agencies. At the first stage, piloting will be carried out by test pilots of the Yakovlev Design Bureau.
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    MC-21 is a new generation medium-haul passenger aircraft with a capacity of 163 to 211 passengers. The airliner is focused on the most demanded segment of the passenger transportation market. MC-21 is manufactured according to the latest developments in the field of aircraft construction. Advanced aerodynamics, engines and avionics of the latest generation provide high flight performance and reduced operating costs compared to analogues. Aerodynamic perfection of the aircraft is achieved with a wing of greater aspect ratio made of composite materials. Engines with a high bypass ratio PD-14 are distinguished by low fuel consumption, reduced noise levels and emissions. The widest fuselage in its class provides more personal space for passengers.
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    The F-35B Lightning jets of 617 Squadron have returned to RAF Marham following their deployment to HMS Queen Elizabeth as part of Operation Achillean.

    Group Captain Phil Marr, Commander Lightning, said: “617 Squadron’s latest embarkation on HMS Queen Elizabeth has been a resounding success, assuring critical high-readiness operational capability for the UK’s F-35 Lightning Force and providing an excellent opportunity to strengthen ties with our Norwegian partners.”

    The carrier deployment element of the Operation was designed to demonstrate NATO's 5th generation maritime strike capability, with F-35 jets supported by Merlin, and Wildcat helicopters.
    (Photos courtesy of the RAF)
     

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