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U.S. Air Force successfully demonstrates F135 engine

By Ryan Maass
U.S. Air Force successfully demonstrates F135 engine
Pratt & Whitney’s F135 engine, used in the F-35 Lightning II, successfully demonstrated hot-life capability during accelerated mission testing. Photo by Rick Goodfriend courtesy of U.S. Air Force

ARNOLD AIR FORCE BASE, Tenn., Nov. 5 (UPI) -- The U.S. Air Force successfully demonstrated the hot-life capability of Pratt & Whitney's F135 engine, the propulsion system for the F-35 Lightning II aircraft.

The test took place at the Arnold Engineering Development Center at Arnold Air Force Base, and focused on conventional takeoff and landing. The Air Force says the demonstration marked a key milestone for the F135 engine, which powers their variant of the Lockheed Martin F-35 multirole fighter jet.

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"Due to the component commonality across all three F-35 variant engines, the lessons learned will save costs for the entire fleet, including the (other) services and the non-U.S. participating countries," CIP Air Force chief Michael Astahoff said in a statement.

During the demonstration, the engine achieved 5,210 total accumulated cycles in 235 days of testing. This amounts to over seven years of operation, about 1,200 F-35 missions. The testing was performed to evaluate reliability and maintainability of the engine, while also identifying potential issues.

The F-35 program has accumulated over 5,510 hours in testing at AEDC.

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