Finding a suitable runway to launch your multibillion dollar fighter jet from isn’t always as easy as it sounds. That’s why the F-35B Lightning II is designed to with the ability to both take off and land without ever needing to taxi. Here’s the first look at its vertical launch.
Earlier this month at the Naval Air Station in Patuxent River, Maryland, the F-35B demonstrates its VTOL (Vertical Takeoff/Landing) abilities for the first time on camera. This not only allows the plane to hop short distances, it also allows the crew to carry heavier loads than otherwise possible. By using both the downward thrust of the jets in addition to the aerodynamic lift generated by the wings, the F-35B is capable of taking off with limited runway space and while carrying extra fuel or ammo. [Lockheed]