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F-35A Aircraft Model Undergoes Store Separation Testing

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The U.S. Air Force put a one-fifteenth scale F-35A Lightning II model in a transonic wind tunnel to test the aircraft's store separation. The test took place ahead of schedule at Arnold Air Force Base's Engineering Development Complex 4, USAF said Tuesday.

“Our goal was to collect aerodynamic data used to determine characteristics of the GBU-54/38 Laser JDAM metric store for all three variants of the F-35,” said Jimmy Williams, a project manager with USAF.

A separation test trials the safety of an aircraft as it releases missiles, fuel tanks or other stores. The test assessed the aerodynamic effects of carried stores and the actual separation or release across two phases.