Weapons On Target

Posted 6 July 2015
Photo by Lance Cpl. Michael Thorn

Pilots from Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 121 (VMFA-121) at MCAS Yuma, Arizona, conducted the first F-35B operational ordnance expenditures 16-22 June 2015. A total of fourteen pilots, flying six F-35Bs to employ both inert and high-explosive munitions, delivered eighteen 500-pound GBU-12 and a dozen 1,000-pound GBU-32s were employed during the training, which took place on Restricted Area 2507 in southeastern California. This was a critical test, as in accordance with the guidelines set by Marine Corps Headquarters, fleet F-35Bs needed to demonstrate the ability to employ ordnance for the squadron in order to declare Initial Operating Capability, or IOC, which is expected to occur in July or August.

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