In its search for a missing F-35B Lightning II fighter jet from the US Marine Corps, the US military has probably found the wreckage of the machine. The debris field is in Williamsburg County, South Carolina, Joint Base Charleston said. It is about two hours northwest of the base. It is not clear from the Facebook post how the two hours are measured.
The fighter jet of the Marine Fighter Attack Training Squadron disappeared on Sunday after the pilot escaped with the ejection seat due to a “mishap”. The aircraft continued to fly with the autopilot activated and was initially unable to be found due to the stealth function. The pilot was taken to hospital in a “stable condition” and was treated there. The military then asked the public for help in finding the F-35. Teams from Joint Base Charleston, Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing at MCAS Cherry Point, Navy Region Southeast, FAA, Civil Air Patrol and various police departments in South Carolina were ultimately successful in their search for debris.
Germany also orders F-35s
The F-35 stealth jet from the US defense company Lockheed Martin is considered one of the most modern fighter aircraft in the world – and the most expensive weapon in US history. The stealth multi-role combat aircraft is 15.7 meters long and has a wingspan of 10.7 meters. It exists in three basic variants: as a conventional fighter jet F-35A, as an aircraft carrier version (F-35C) and, as in this case, an F-35B – a vertical take-off aircraft that covers shorter distances. Such a fighter jet currently costs between 80 million and 100 million US dollars (around 75 to 96 million euros).
Many problems arose during the development of the fighter jet at the beginning of 2020, around 13 years after the first flight. At that time there were still various software and some hardware problems. These fighter jets will be equipped with stealth technology. This makes locating such an aircraft more difficult by reducing emissions that it itself emits or reflects. Germany is one of the countries that have ordered F-35s. In December 2022 it was said that the Bundeswehr could procure 35 F-35A from its special assets. Cost including “extensive package of engines, role-specific mission equipment, spare and exchange parts, technical-logistical support, training and armament”: 8.3 billion euros.
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