Video: F-35B Conducts First Ever Vertical Take Off

F-35 VTOLockheed Martin released the video of the first ever Vertical Take Off conducted by an F-35B Short Takeoff/Vertical Landing (STOVL) Lightning II test aircraft. The test was completed May 10 at Naval Air Station Patuxen River, Md.

The historic, albeit brief, flight occurred just a month after the Joint Strike Fighter program completed the first ever F-35B short takeoff and vertical landing during a night-time test mission. the F-35B is the Marine Corps version of the Joint Strike Fighter.

The vertical take off is not a combat capability, however, it is a requirement for the fielding of the F-35B fleet. The vertical take off capability will used rarely, likely only to move the aircraft’s position on a flight deck. The majority of the time, the F-35B will complete a short take off.

The Joint Strike Fighter program first executed a vertical take off with the X-35B in 2001. While the vertical take off will be rare, the pilots will not perform arrested landings. The F-35B will complete vertical landings, which Lockheed has completed about 400 so far this year.

20 Comments on "Video: F-35B Conducts First Ever Vertical Take Off"

  1. wait this is sopose to be news? after so many years and bilions of dolars, F-35 finaly takes off verticaly?

  2. I can't get enough videos of the F-35s or the Ospreys doing their thing. Vertical takeoff and landing is really something.

  3. The British are very worried about the F-35B in Hot, Humid Weather.
    Defense-Aerospace "Navy Carrier Jets 'Can't Land In Hot Weather'
    . http://www.defense-aerospace.com/article-view/rel
    .
    . So just how is it going to work for the Marines in the Pacific??

  4. not worth the asking price.

  5. It would be awesome if they could fly from being stationary in the air
    and not just move up and down.

  6. "The vertical take off is not a combat capability". Sounds like a free bail-out clause for Lockmart.

    "The vertical take off capability will [be] used rarely, likely only to move the aircraft’s position on a flight deck." A whole lot of money, weight, and equipment to stick in a high performance aircraft for something that will be rarely used, and not for combat purposes.

  7. USS ENTERPRISE | May 20, 2013 at 7:42 pm | Reply

    So, uh, it took "Lockmart" 12 YEARS to release the first test? I have seen it VTOL in video before.

  8. Vertical takeoff is very rarely employed with a VTOL aircraft. Although it can do it, doing so consumes too much fuel and is very limiting on weapons load. So, the standard combat flight profile for VTOL aircraft is short takeoff and vertical landing. That's far more efficient and combat effective, and the F-35 offers leap-ahead capability in this flight profile…….

  9. RunningBear | May 20, 2013 at 8:45 pm | Reply

    F-35B VTO to a waiting V-22 tanker is bringing new thoughts to flexibility!

  10. Amicus Curiae | May 21, 2013 at 8:29 am | Reply

    Some useful information that is never reported is what weight was the aircraft and what was the atmospheric condition (i.e. temp). Until that is revealed, I can't make an assessment on whether this jet is a success. I am looking for the capability to wave off (arrest the sink rate) a vertical decent at a weight of 38,800 lb on a 90 degree day. That would impress me. Anyone have that info? Anyone…(crickets chirping)?

  11. I'm not in the military so obviously I may be missing something, but why are we doing STOVL at all? I can't see any use for it in modern warfare. I try to imagine any scenario in which it might be needed, and I can't come up with anything. This is not WWII where we are island hopping and working from short, unprepared runways. Our air power operates from large established bases with long runways, or from super carriers. If a carrier can't reach, or a base is too far away, we have fleets of refueling planes to extend our range. And if all else fails, and no plane can reach, we have cruise missiles that can. So in what realistic scenario would we ever need STOVL? The Brits need it to fly off their mini-carriers, but we don't.
    It seems like an incredible waste trying to maintain a weapon that has no place in modern war.

  12. Meatpopsicle | May 21, 2013 at 2:19 pm | Reply

    Funny to see this released now. I guess Lockheed doesn't want NG stealing the show with their X-47B.

  13. The Achilles Heel of a Jet Aircraft is the ability to just get off the ground. This thing needs no ground, it just goes up and forward. Or it just goes forward and up. Which ever is necessary or most practical. This aircraft will be in the air when others are helpless on the ground. Possibly this aircraft will land on ground, not possible for anything but a helicopter to land on. It adds to the armamentarium of our national security. Airports, runways, are now optional.

    However I do wonder about the operation in sand, heavy dust, etc.

    I believe it is worthy of development, even if it is expensive. An Ace in the Hole.

  14. The Old Bear | May 22, 2013 at 12:53 pm | Reply

    "An the Oscar for best Special Effects in a short film goes to Lockheed Martin for the vertical take off of the F-35B"

    2014 Oscar awards.

  15. So can the F35 actually transition to forward flight after a vertical take off? Or does it just hover and come back down?

  16. It would be awesome if they could fly from being stationary in the air
    and not just move up and down.

  17. Vertical takeoff is very rarely employed with a VTOL aircraft. Although it can do it, doing so consumes too much fuel and is very limiting on weapons load. So, the standard combat flight profile for VTOL aircraft is short takeoff and vertical landing. That’s far more efficient and combat effective, and the F-35 offers leap-ahead capability in this flight profile…….

  18. the vtol is a rare occasion to view and it sounds miraculous to witness an aircraft lifting itself up and down vertically,what a power

  19. the interest and commitment in such a craft may not just be in its ability to VTL/VL but the availability of runways in future conflict at home or abroad.

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