Navy Receives First Lightning

The U.S. Navy’s Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 101 received its first F-35C Lightning II carrier variant from Lockheed Martin at the squadron’s home at Eglin Air Force Base, Florida.

The F-35C will enhance the strike capabilities of carrier air wings and joint task forces and will complement the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet which is currently the Navy’s premier strike fighter.

By 2025, the Navy’s aircraft carrier-based air wings will consist of a mix of F-35C, F/A-18E/F Super Hornets, EA-18G Growlers electronic attack aircraft, E-2D Hawkeye battle management and control aircraft, Unmanned Carrier Launched Airborne Surveillance and Strike (UCLASS) air vehicles, MH-60R/S helicopters and Carrier Onboard Delivery logistics aircraft.

VFA 101, based at Eglin Air Force Base, will serve as the F-35C Fleet Replacement Squadron, training both aircrew and maintenance personnel to fly and repair the F-35C.

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