Sunday, March 31, 2019

Photos of the Day: The "Moon 2 Mars" NASA Social Event at JPL...

My NASA Social group poses inside the main lobby of the Space Flight Operations Facility (SFOF) at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) near Pasadena, California...on March 11, 2019.

Just thought I'd end this month with these pics that I took on March 11...during the Moon 2 Mars NASA Social event at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) near Pasadena, California. During this event, about 20 other social media users and I watched a televised conference held by NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine (who was at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida at the time) from inside the von Kármán Auditorium at JPL. During the conference, Bridenstine discussed the 2020 NASA budget (which was just released earlier that morning)—and talked about major NASA projects such as the Space Launch System rocket and Gateway space station that NASA plans to place in orbit around the Moon next decade. The conference was also viewed by social media users who attended the Moon 2 Mars event at several other NASA field centers nationwide, such as Kennedy Space Center and the Langley Research Center in Virginia.

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine discusses the 2020 NASA budget during the 'Moon 2 Mars' event at Kennedy Space Center in Florida...on March 11, 2019.

After the conference, our NASA Social group took a tour of difference facilities on the JPL campus. First up was the JPL Museum next door to the von Kármán Auditorium, and then after that, the historic Space Flight Operations Facility (a.k.a. "The Center of the Universe") up the hill. And afterwards, we walked over to the Spacecraft Assembly Facility (SAF) where the Mars 2020 rover continues to be built. And finally, we took a van to the Mars Yard—which is all the way at the top of a hill on the JPL campus. We could've walked to this facility, but we were running low on time (this NASA Social was only from 8:30 AM to 1 PM...and Bridenstine's conference lasted from 11 AM to 12 noon) and had to get there as soon as possible. And our JPL hosts were incredibly generous!

My NASA Social group poses inside the van that shuttled us to the Mars Yard at the top of a hill at JPL...on March 11, 2019.

This marked the second time in a little over a month that I visited JPL (I attended a JPL public tour on February 4...but I apparently forgot to blog about it, heh)! I'll probably be back here in late May—for the annual Explore JPL event (formerly known as the JPL Open House). But first, I need to make sure that I get a ticket (which becomes available on the JPL website on April 6) for it... I'm well aware that I typed 'JPL' five times in this paragraph. Oh wait, make that six. Happy Sunday!

My fellow social media users and I introduce ourselves at the start of the 'Moon 2 Mars' event at JPL...on March 11, 2019.

Inside the SFOF's Mission Control Room (MCR) at JPL...on March 11, 2019.

Posing for a pic at a console inside the MCR at JPL...on March 11, 2019.

Inside the SFOF's Mission Control Center, also known as 'The Center of the Universe', at JPL...on March 11, 2019.

Posing for a pic inside The Center of the Universe...on March 11, 2019.

Components for the Mars 2020 rover are being worked on inside JPL's Spacecraft Assembly Facility (SAF)...on March 11, 2019.

Engineers work on the backshell for the Mars 2020 spacecraft inside the SAF...on March 11, 2019.

Engineers work on the body of the Mars 2020 rover itself inside the SAF...on March 11, 2019.

The engineering model for the Curiosity Mars rover on display at JPL's Mars Yard....on March 11, 2019.

Posing next to the Curiosity Mars rover's engineering model at JPL's Mars Yard...on March 11, 2019.

My NASA Social group takes one last team photo...this time at JPL's Mars Yard on March 11, 2019.

Friday, March 29, 2019

Image of the Day: Batman Will Soon Begin...on TV

In honor of the 80th anniversary since Batman made his debut in DC's Detective Comics #27 (in May of 1939), the folks behind the FOX TV show Gotham released this cool promo pic of the Dark Knight staring down at the city that he's the silent guardian and watchful protector of (to quote Gary Oldman's Commissioner Gordon in 2008's The Dark Knight). As mentioned in this image, the final two episodes for Gotham will air next month—starting on April 18.

David Mazouz, who played Bruce Wayne on Gotham since it premiered on FOX in September of 2014, will be featured in close-ups of the Caped Crusader—and will even provide the growling voice of the masked vigilante himself. However, a taller actor will play Batman in wider shots of the his long-awaited emergence takes place in a flash forward 10 years after the current events depicted on Gotham. Awesome.

Batman will make his long-awaited appearance on FOX TV's GOTHAM when it returns from hiatus on April 18, 2019.

Thursday, March 28, 2019

Saying Goodbye to a Mentor...

Earlier today, I went to the Queen of Heaven Mortuary & Cemetery in Rowland Heights, CA, to attend the funeral for my 8th grade teacher, Mrs. Ventura. Not only did one of my brothers and his friend (who were both in the Class of '92) show up as well, but students from other years were also attendance...most of them being from classes that graduated after I did in 1994. Ironically, I was the only one from the Class of '94 who appeared today—despite the fact that one collage that was on display (shown below) at the chapel where the funeral was held was devoted to my class. I reckon some of my classmates may have went to the viewing last night (which is what my sister did; she was in the Class of '89).

A Mass dedicated to Mrs. Ventura will be held at our grade school (which is a Catholic elementary school) on April 13. Of course I'm going. The other alumni who showed up today are planning to attend as well. I wonder if my classmates will show up, though. After all, as mentioned in this Blog entry, the 25-year anniversary of our 8th grade graduation will be on June 11.

Farewell, Mrs. V.

A collage showing photos of my 8th grade classmates posing with Mrs. Ventura (25 years ago) was displayed at the chapel where her funeral was held...on March 28, 2019.

Monday, March 25, 2019

Another Reason Why Mitch McConnell Needs to be Voted Out in 2020...

So I just found out a few minutes ago that Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell is blocking the Democrats' attempt to release the full Mueller Report to the public. This is despite the fact that the report apparently cleared Donald Trump of any wrongdoing in regards to Russian collusion and obstruction of justice, but didn't fully exonerate the president of these charges. Hmm— Does that mean that Trump-picked attorney general William Barr was talking out of his ass when he released his preliminary findings yesterday? If Trump is innocent, then release the evidence to the American people to prove it. Of course, this won't happen...because the Republicans are LYING!

Just like what I posted about Republican senator Lindsey Graham in this recent Blog entry, Mitch McConnell is a turd who needs to be removed from office in order for the GOP to become a decent political party again. As mentioned in that entry about Graham, Jeopardy TV host Alex Trebek is unfairly dealing with stage 4 pancreatic cancer, but McConnell—that turtle-faced bitch from Kentucky—continues to live on and put party over country. There's nothing more to say unless you want me to lace this diatribe with harsher language, so I'll end it here. But let me reiterate: Mitch McConnell is a treacherous, turtle-faced bitch who needs to be voted out by intelligent Kentuckians in 2020 if the Republican Party is to gain any semblance of honor again. That is all.


Mitch McConnell is as wretched and treacherous as his chin is big.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Remembering A Mentor From My Youth...

I just found out through my sister less than two hours ago that our 8th grade teacher, Mrs. Ventura, passed away last Friday. Rest In Peace, Mrs. V... June 11 will mark 25 years since my 8th grade graduation.

I intend on attending the memorial service next week.

Rest In Peace, Mrs. Ventura.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

OSIRIS-REx Update: A Cloud of Rock Debris Seen Floating Away from Bennu...

An image that NASA's OSIRIS-REx spacecraft took of a cloud of rock fragments that floated away from asteroid Bennu into deep space...on January 19, 2019.
NASA / Goddard / University of Arizona / Lockheed Martin

NASA Mission Reveals Asteroid Has Big Surprises (Press Release)

A NASA spacecraft that will return a sample of a near-Earth asteroid named Bennu to Earth in 2023 made the first-ever close-up observations of particle plumes erupting from an asteroid’s surface. Bennu also revealed itself to be more rugged than expected, challenging the mission team to alter its flight and sample collection plans, due to the rough terrain.

Bennu is the target of NASA’s Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) mission, which began orbiting the asteroid on Dec. 31. Bennu, which is only slightly wider than the height of the Empire State Building, may contain unaltered material from the very beginning of our solar system.

“The discovery of plumes is one of the biggest surprises of my scientific career,” said Dante Lauretta, OSIRIS-REx principal investigator at the University of Arizona, Tucson. “And the rugged terrain went against all of our predictions. Bennu is already surprising us, and our exciting journey there is just getting started.”

Shortly after the discovery of the particle plumes on Jan. 6, the mission science team increased the frequency of observations, and subsequently detected additional particle plumes during the following two months. Although many of the particles were ejected clear of Bennu, the team tracked some particles that orbited Bennu as satellites before returning to the asteroid’s surface.

The OSIRIS-REx team initially spotted the particle plumes in images while the spacecraft was orbiting Bennu at a distance of about one mile (1.61 kilometers). Following a safety assessment, the mission team concluded the particles did not pose a risk to the spacecraft. The team continues to analyze the particle plumes and their possible causes.

“The first three months of OSIRIS-REx’s up-close investigation of Bennu have reminded us what discovery is all about — surprises, quick thinking, and flexibility,” said Lori Glaze, acting director of the Planetary Science Division at NASA Headquarters in Washington. “We study asteroids like Bennu to learn about the origin of the solar system. OSIRIS-REx’s sample will help us answer some of the biggest questions about where we come from.”

OSIRIS-REx launched in 2016 to explore Bennu, which is the smallest body ever orbited by spacecraft. Studying Bennu will allow researchers to learn more about the origins of our solar system, the sources of water and organic molecules on Earth, the resources in near-Earth space, as well as improve our understanding of asteroids that could impact Earth.

The OSIRIS-REx team also didn’t anticipate the number and size of boulders on Bennu’s surface. From Earth-based observations, the team expected a generally smooth surface with a few large boulders. Instead, it discovered Bennu’s entire surface is rough and dense with boulders.

The higher-than-expected density of boulders means that the mission’s plans for sample collection, also known as Touch-and-Go (TAG), need to be adjusted. The original mission design was based on a sample site that is hazard-free, with an 82-foot (25-meter) radius. However, because of the unexpectedly rugged terrain, the team hasn’t been able to identify a site of that size on Bennu. Instead, it has begun to identify candidate sites that are much smaller in radius.

The smaller sample site footprint and the greater number of boulders will demand more accurate performance from the spacecraft during its descent to the surface than originally planned. The mission team is developing an updated approach, called Bullseye TAG, to accurately target smaller sample sites.

“Throughout OSIRIS-REx’s operations near Bennu, our spacecraft and operations team have demonstrated that we can achieve system performance that beats design requirements,” said Rich Burns, the project manager of OSIRIS-REx at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. “Bennu has issued us a challenge to deal with its rugged terrain, and we are confident that OSIRIS-REx is up to the task.”

The original, low-boulder estimate was derived both from Earth-based observations of Bennu’s thermal inertia — or its ability to conduct and store heat — and from radar measurements of its surface roughness. Now that OSIRIS-REx has revealed Bennu’s surface up close, those expectations of a smoother surface have been proven wrong. This suggests the computer models used to interpret previous data do not adequately predict the nature of small, rocky, asteroid surfaces. The team is revising these models with the data from Bennu.

The OSIRIS-REx science team has made many other discoveries about Bennu in the three months since the spacecraft arrived at the asteroid, some of which were presented Tuesday at the 50th Lunar and Planetary Conference in Houston and in a special collection of papers issued by the journal Nature.

The team has directly observed a change in the spin rate of Bennu as a result of what is known as the Yarkovsky-O'Keefe-Radzievskii-Paddack (YORP) effect. The uneven heating and cooling of Bennu as it rotates in sunlight is causing the asteroid to increase its rotation speed. As a result, Bennu's rotation period is decreasing by about one second every 100 years. Separately, two of the spacecraft’s instruments, the MapCam color imager and the OSIRIS-REx Thermal Emission Spectrometer (OTES), have made detections of magnetite on Bennu’s surface, which bolsters earlier findings indicating the interaction of rock with liquid water on Bennu’s parent body.

Goddard provides overall mission management, systems engineering, and the safety and mission assurance for OSIRIS-REx. Dante Lauretta of the University of Arizona, Tucson, is the principal investigator, and the University of Arizona also leads the science team and the mission’s science observation planning and data processing. Lockheed Martin Space in Denver built the spacecraft and is providing flight operations. Goddard and KinetX Aerospace are responsible for navigating the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft. OSIRIS-REx is the third mission in NASA’s New Frontiers Program, which is managed by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, for the agency’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington.


Thursday, March 14, 2019

Lindsey Graham Is a Trump Patsy and a Turd...

Earlier today, the U.S. House of Representatives unanimously passed (at 420-0) a non-binding resolution calling for the Department of Justice to publicly release Robert Mueller's report on the Trump-Russia investigation once it is completed. Shortly afterwards, however, Republican senator Lindsey Graham vowed to block the resolution from being taken up in the U.S. Senate...citing that the measure should be voted on only if a special counsel was appointed to investigate Hillary Clinton's e-mails as well. This is despite the fact that Hillary was cleared of any wrongdoing by the FBI before the 2016 presidential election, and Hillary has been out of public office since that time.

All I can say is it that a good man like Jeopardy host Alex Trebek is dealing with stage 4 pancreatic cancer, and yet a traitorous, compromised piece of shit like Lindsey Graham will continue to live on and tweet stupid crap like the post above? Note to Graham: What does Donald Trump (and Vladimir Putin) have on you, douchebag? Were you that achin' to become Trump's patsy after your good friend (and true American) John McCain passed away last year? You're despicable. Since Paul Ryan is no longer in office, and I can't talk trash about him anymore, I now devote the caption below to you, asshole...

Lindsey Graham is apparently owned by Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin...but WHY?

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Opportunity's Final Portrait on Mars...

A cropped version of the 360-degree panorama that NASA's Opportunity rover took on the surface of Mars in spring of 2018.
NASA / JPL - Caltech / Cornell / ASU

Opportunity's Parting Shot Was a Beautiful Panorama (News Release)

Over 29 days last spring, NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity documented this 360-degree panorama from multiple images taken at what would become its final resting spot in Perseverance Valley. Located on the inner slope of the western rim of Endeavour Crater, Perseverance Valley is a system of shallow troughs descending eastward about the length of two football fields from the crest of Endeavour's rim to its floor.

"This final panorama embodies what made our Opportunity rover such a remarkable mission of exploration and discovery," said Opportunity project manager John Callas of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. "To the right of center you can see the rim of Endeavor Crater rising in the distance. Just to the left of that, rover tracks begin their descent from over the horizon and weave their way down to geologic features that our scientists wanted to examine up close. And to the far right and left are the bottom of Perseverance Valley and the floor of Endeavour crater, pristine and unexplored, waiting for visits from future explorers."

The trailblazing mission ended after nearly 15 years of exploring the surface of Mars, but its legacy will live on. Opportunity's scientific discoveries contributed to our unprecedented understanding of the planet's geology and environment, laying the groundwork for future robotic and human missions to the Red Planet.

The panorama is composed of 354 individual images provided by the rover's Panoramic Camera (Pancam) from May 13 through June 10, or sols (Martian days) 5,084 through 5,111. This view combines images taken through three different Pancam filters. The filters admit light centered on wavelengths of 753 nanometers (near-infrared), 535 nanometers (green) and 432 nanometers (violet).

A few frames (bottom left) remain black and white, as the solar-powered rover did not have the time to record those locations using the green and violet filters before a severe Mars-wide dust storm swept in on June 2018.

The gallery includes the last images Opportunity obtained during its mission (black-and-white thumbnail images from the Pancam that were used to determine how opaque the sky was on its last day) and also the last piece of data the rover transmitted (a "noisy," incomplete full-frame image of a darkened sky).

After eight months of effort and sending more than a thousand commands in an attempt to restore contact with the rover, NASA declared Opportunity's mission complete on Feb. 13, 2019.

JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, managed the Mars Exploration Rover Project for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington.

Source: Jet Propulsion Laboratory


An image that is part of the larger 360-degree panorama that NASA's Opportunity rover took on the surface of Mars in spring of 2018.
NASA / JPL - Caltech / Cornell / ASU

Thursday, March 07, 2019

Photo of the Day: Beresheet's First Selfie in Space...

A selfie that was taken by Israel's Beresheet lunar lander 37,600 kilometers (23,369 miles) from Earth...on March 3, 2019.

Just thought I'd share this cool pic taken by Israel's Beresheet lunar lander on March 3...from a distance of 37,600 kilometers (23,369 miles) from Earth. As of today, the 4-legged spacecraft is now 270,000 kilometers (167,806 miles) from our home planet—after firing its main engine for 152 seconds to bring its elliptical orbit ever so closer to the Moon.

Beresheet is set to touch down on the Moon's surface on April 11...exactly one week after the craft enters lunar orbit.

Wednesday, March 06, 2019

Kepler's Final Exoplanet Discovery Was Actually Made a Decade Ago...

An artist's concept of the exoplanet Kepler-1658b orbiting its parent star.
Gabriel Perez Diaz / Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias

Discovery Alert! Kepler's First Planet Candidate Confirmed, 10 Years Later (News Release - March 5)

Despite being the very first planet candidate discovered by NASA’s Kepler space telescope, Kepler-1658b had a rocky road to confirmation. The initial estimate of the planet’s host star was off, so the sizes of both the star and Kepler-1658b were vastly underestimated. It was later marked as a false positive — that is, scientists thought the data did not really point to a planet — when the numbers didn’t quite add up for the effects seen on its star for a body of that size. Kepler-1658b moved from planet candidate to false positive and back until new software was used to refine the data and reclassify it, changing it from a data anomaly to possible planet.

Fortuitously, a team at the University of Hawaii was poised to step in at just the right time. As part of her first year research project, lead author Ashley Chontos, a graduate student with the university’s Institute for Astronomy, went back through Kepler data looking for targets to reanalyze in 2017.

“Our new analysis, which uses stellar sound waves observed in the Kepler data to characterize the star, demonstrated that the star is in fact three times larger than previously thought. This in turn means that the planet is three times larger, revealing that Kepler-1658b is actually a hot Jupiter,” Chontos said. With this refined analysis, everything pointed to it being a real planet. Next came confirmation.

“We alerted Dave Latham (a senior astronomer at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, and co-author on the paper) and his team collected the necessary spectroscopic data to unambiguously show that Kepler-1658b is a planet,” said Dan Huber, co-author and astronomer at the University of Hawaii. “As one of the pioneers of exoplanet science and a key figure behind the Kepler mission, it was particularly fitting to have Dave be part of this confirmation.”

Source: NASA.Gov

Tuesday, March 05, 2019

InSight Update: The Lander's 'Mole' Has a Rocky Start Burrowing into the Martian Surface...

An image of the InSight lander's robotic arm placing the Heat Flow and Physical Properties Package on the surface of Mars...on February 12, 2019.

Mars InSight Lander's 'Mole' Pauses Digging (News Release)

NASA's Mars InSight lander has a probe designed to dig up to 16 feet (5 meters) below the surface and measure heat coming from inside the planet. After beginning to hammer itself into the soil on Thursday, Feb. 28, the 16-inch-long (40-centimeter-long) probe — part of an instrument called the Heat and Physical Properties Package, or HP3 — got about three-fourths of the way out of its housing structure before stopping. No significant progress was seen after a second bout of hammering on Saturday, March 2. Data suggests the probe, known as a "mole," is at a 15-degree tilt.

Scientists suspect it hit a rock or some gravel. The team had hoped there would be relatively few rocks below ground, given how few appear on the surface beside the lander. Even so, the mole was designed to push small rocks aside or wend its way around them. The instrument, which was provided for InSight by the German Aerospace Center (DLR), did so repeatedly during testing before InSight launched.

"The team has decided to pause the hammering for now to allow the situation to be analyzed more closely and jointly come up with strategies for overcoming the obstacle," HP3 Principal Investigator Tilman Spohn of DLR wrote in a blog post. He added that the team wants to hold off from further hammering for about two weeks.

Data show that the probe itself continues to function as expected: After heating by about 18 degrees Fahrenheit, it measures how quickly that heat dissipates in the soil. This property, known as thermal conductivity, helps calibrate sensors embedded in a tether trailing from the back of the mole. Once the mole is deep enough, these tether sensors can measure Mars' natural heat coming from inside the planet, which is generated by radioactive materials decaying and energy left over from Mars' formation.

The team will be conducting further heating tests this week to measure the thermal conductivity of the upper surface. They will also use a radiometer on InSight's deck to measure temperature changes on the surface. Mars' moon Phobos will pass in front of the Sun several times this week; like a cloud passing overhead, the eclipse will darken and cool the ground around InSight.

Source: NASA.Gov


An artist's concept of NASA's InSight lander on the surface of Mars.

Friday, March 01, 2019

The U.S. Navy's Joint Strike Fighter Fleet Is Ready for Combat!

Three F-35C Lightning II aircraft fly in formation off the coast of Florida on February 1, 2019.
U.S. Navy photo by Chief Mass Communication Specialist Shannon E. Renfroe / Released

F-35C Achieves Initial Operational Capability (Press Release - February 28)

SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- The Commander, Naval Air Forces and the U.S. Marine Corps Deputy Commandant for Aviation jointly announced that the aircraft carrier variant of the Joint Strike Fighter, the F-35C Lightning II, met all requirements and achieved Initial Operational Capability (IOC).

The Feb. 28 announcement comes shortly after the Department of the Navy’s first F-35C squadron, Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 147, completed aircraft carrier qualifications aboard USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) and received Safe-For-Flight Operations Certification.

In order to declare IOC, the first operational squadron must be properly manned, trained and equipped to conduct assigned missions in support of fleet operations. This includes having 10 Block 3F, F-35C aircraft, requisite spare parts, support equipment, tools, technical publications, training programs and a functional Autonomic Logistic Information System (ALIS).

Additionally, the ship that supports the first squadron must possess the proper infrastructure, qualifications and certifications. Lastly, the Joint Program Office, industry, and Naval Aviation must demonstrate that all procedures, processes and policies are in place to sustain operations.

“The F-35C is ready for operations, ready for combat and ready to win,” said Commander Naval Air Forces, Vice Admiral DeWolfe Miller. “We are adding an incredible weapon system into the arsenal of our Carrier Strike Groups that significantly enhances the capability of the joint force.”

Naval Air Station (NAS) Lemoore is the home-base for the Navy’s Joint Strike Fighter Wing, Navy F-35C fleet squadrons and the Fleet Replacement Squadron (FRS), VFA-125 that trains Navy and Marine Corps CVN-based Joint Strike Fighter pilots. To accommodate the F-35C program at NAS Lemoore, several facilities were built or remodeled to facilitate specific F-35C requirements with regard to maintenance and training, including a Pilot Fit Facility, Centralized Engine Repair Facility, Pilot Training Center and a newly-remodeled hangar. Future projects are planned as additional Navy squadrons transition into the F-35C. The Marine Corps plans to transition four F-35C squadrons that will be assigned to Carrier Air Wings for deployments.

“We’re very proud of what our Sailors have accomplished in the Joint Strike Fighter community,” said CAPT Max McCoy, commodore of the U.S. Navy’s Joint Strike Fighter Wing. “Their commitment to mission delivered fifth generation capability to the carrier air wing, making us more combat effective than ever before. We will continue to learn and improve ways to maintain and sustain F-35C as we prepare for first deployment. The addition of F-35C to existing Carrier Air Wing capability ensures that we can fight and win in contested battlespace now and well into the future.”

Meanwhile, Rear Admiral Dale Horan, director, USN F-35C Fleet Integration Office said, “The F-35C will revolutionize capability and operating concepts of aircraft carrier-based naval aviation using advanced technologies to find, fix and assess threats and, if necessary, track, target and engage them in all contested environments,” adding “This accomplishment represents years of hard work on the part of the F-35 Joint Program Office and Naval Aviation Enterprise. Our focus has now shifted to applying lessons learned from this process to future squadron transitions, and preparing VFA-147 for their first overseas deployment.”

The mission-ready F-35C is the latest addition to U.S. Navy’s Carrier Air Wing. With its stealth technology, state-of-the-art avionics, advanced sensors, weapons capacity and range, the aircraft carrier-based F-35C provides unprecedented air superiority, interdiction, suppression of enemy air defenses and close-air-support as well as advanced command and control functions through fused sensors. These state-of-the art capabilities provide pilots and combatant commanders unrivaled battlespace awareness and lethality. The F-35C is the final U.S. Joint Strike Fighter variant to declare IOC and follows the USAF’s F-35A and USMC’s F-35B. IOC declaration is a significant milestone.

Source: United States Navy


An F-35C Lightning II aircraft flies off the coast of Florida on February 1, 2019.
U.S. Navy photo by Chief Mass Communication Specialist Shannon E. Renfroe / Released