First night vertical landing made by F-35B on Aboard USS Wasp

FORT WORTH, TX. An F-35B short takeoff/vertical landing (STOVL) variant piloted by Lt. Col. Russell Clift, a test pilot with the U.S. Marine Corps, made the first night-time vertical landing aboard the USS WASP.

During the Ship Suitability Sea Trials, also known as Developmental Test Phase Two (DT-II), the will perform critical capabilities of the aircraft that will can be utilized by the U.S. Marine Corps and international partners -- Italy and the United Kingdom.

As of August 18, the two F-35Bs operating in DT-II, known as BF-1and BF-5, made a total of 40 short takeoffs and 41 vertical landings. Once DT-II is completed, the Navy and Marine Corps should have sufficient data to support certification of future F-35B Lighting II shipboard operations with anticipation of initial operating capability in 2015.

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