F-35 Could Carry B61 Nuclear Warhead Sooner Than Planned: The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is slated to be armed with the B61 nuclear bomb as early as 2020, but could carry the weapon sooner, a general said.
The stealthy fifth-generation fighter made by Lockheed Martin Corp. is set to be fitted with the B61-12 Mod gravity bomb — the latest variant — sometime between 2020 and 2022, Air Force Brig. Gen. Scott Pleus told Military.com during a recent interview at the Pentagon.
If the weapon is needed sooner, the schedule could be quickened, according to Pleus, a former F-16 Fighting Falcon pilot who directs the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program’s integration office for the service.
“It would definitely be possible,” he said.
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