The F-35 Box Score

As of Thursday, F-35 test aircraft had accumulated some 727 flights, with nearly 1,100 total flight hours, according to Vice Adm. David Venlet, who oversees the stealth aircraft’s maturation. Venlet gave the breakdown as: 295 flights and 520 hours on the Air Force’s F-35A model; 379 flights and 490 hours on the Marine Corps’ F-35B short takeoff and vertical landing variant; and 53 flights and 81 hours on the Navy’s F-35C carrier configuration. Those numbers do not include 91 flights and 125 hours accumulated on AA-1, the first F-35A test aircraft that was not a production-representative airplane. Venlet said testing productivity is on the upswing. Not only is the test fleet racking up more than 50 hours per week, it is also checking off more test points on each flight. “There’re lots of data we’re collecting,” said Venlet. “Now we have to analyze it.”