RNLAF 322 and 323sq earmarked to fly F-35

F-35 unit & base selection, delivery, activation
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Unread post03 Jan 2014, 21:36

Netherlands details F-35 transition plan

The Royal Netherlands Air Force's 322 Sqn will become the service's first operational unit to fly the Lockheed Martin F-35, after converting to the type from the Lockheed F-16.

Also currently located at Leeuwarden air base, 323 Sqn will end its operational duties with the F-16 on 1 November 2014. The unit will be relocated to the USA to take part in the F-35 programme's initial operational test and evaluation (IOT&E) phase, established alongside US and UK squadrons at Edwards AFB in California from 2015.

Lockheed has already delivered two conventional take-off and landing F-35As to the Royal Netherlands Air Force in the USA, to support the nation's involvement in IOT&E activities. Maj Laurens Jan Vijge in December 2013 became the first Dutch pilot to fly the type, from Eglin AFB in Florida.

Source: http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articl ... an-394532/
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Unread post24 Jun 2019, 10:53

The jets flew from the U.S. to Vlieland Bombing Range in Netherlands, struck their target and landed at Volkel Air Base to take part in Dutch Air Force Days 2019
23 Jun 2019 Stefano D'Urso

"On June 13, 2019 two F-35As from the Royal Netherlands Air Force, belonging to the 323 Test and Evaluation Squadron, performed a surprise attack on Vlieland Bombing Range at the end of a 9,000 kilometers trans-oceanic flight. The mission, called Rapid Reaction Test, initially contemplated a direct flight from Edwards AFB, where the squadron is based, to the Netherlands on June 12 but, due to problems with the refueling system of the KDC-10 fuel tanker, the jets had to land in Goose Bay (Canada) and wait for another tanker from Europe.

This test, part of the operational testing and evaluation phase, is aimed to verify the F-35’s ability to leave its home base and perform a surprise attack at great distance with short notice and minimal support, similar to the Rapid Raptor concept developed by the U.S. Air Force. As stated by RNLAF officials: “The approach of Rapid Reaction Deployment is that a number of F-35s can be deployed within 24 hours, self-supporting, flexible and worldwide to carry out missions, with support from tanker and transport devices. This can be carried out in an environment with a high threat, day and
night and in all weather conditions. The collaboration with Special Forces is likely in that context. The aim is also to recognize all possibilities of deployment of the F-35 that may be important for the performance of Special Operations Forces.”

All the logistical needs for the duration of the deployment were provided by just one C-17: ”We have chosen to go out with the absolute minimum. We are eighteen people, the people you need for maintenance, arming and possibly some minor repairs. We also do not include our entire stock of spare parts. You are talking about tires, oil and weapons at this time. Everything and everyone fits in an American C-17 transport plane”, said Major Pascal “Smiley” Smaal.

On Thursday’s evening, the F-35s finally released two inert GBU-49s Enhanced Paveway II dual laser-GPS guided bomb and two inert GBU-12 Paveway II laser guided bomb on Vlieland range. The target, specially built for this test, consisted in three stacked shipping containers and was designated by Joint Terminal Air Controllers (JTACs) from Dutch special forces, to simulate a real attack as closely as possible. The use of laser designators and a digital information packet sent through
datalink made possible to the pilots to hit their target in adverse weather and without the need of radio communications...."

Photo: "One of the F-35s involved in the mission showing its weapons during a dry pass on the range. (Photo: Dutch Ministry of Defence)" https://i0.wp.com/theaviationist.com/wp ... RF-top.jpg

Source: https://theaviationist.com/2019/06/23/d ... tion-test/

F35 Rapid Reaction Deployment https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PIgXR_XULX0

A4G Skyhawk: www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ & www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/videos?view_as=subscriber

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