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F-35C Completes First In-Flight Refuel with USAF KC-135

Naval Air Station Patuxnet River, Md. // August 23, 2013

On Aug. 20, an F-35 Lightning II carrier variant (CV) refueled from a U.S. Air Force KC-135 for the first time.

Lockheed Martin Photo by Michael D. Jackson

With the completion of this test, the F-35C joins the A and B models in proving that all three variants of the F-35 can be refueled from a common tanker platform, despite different methods. The aircraft, known as CF-1, was piloted by Lt. Col. Patrick Moran. Earlier this month, the Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 101, the Navy's first F-35C Lightning II carrier variant aircraft squadron, completed its first flight at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla.