Monday, March 20, 2017

F-35B stealth fighter makes first aerial refueling

F-35B stealth fighter makes first aerial refueling: The U.S. Air Force's F-35B stealth fighter stationed in Japan made its first in-flight refueling last week, expanding its radius of operations, the U.S. Forces Korea (USFK) said Sunday.

The 909th Air Refueling Squadron based in Okinawa, Japan, conducted the F-35B Lightning II fighter's first aerial refueling mission over the western Pacific Ocean on Tuesday, according to the USFK.

The success vastly extends the fighter jet's ability to stay in the air, enabling it to carry out key missions over the Korean Peninsula if the need arises.

The U.S. Air Force's latest stealth fighter will take part in the ongoing Foal Eagle joint exercise with South Korea to hone its strike capabilities this month.

The F-35B Lightning II fighter is expected to carry out ground attack maneuvers during the two-month-long exercise between Seoul and Washington.