The ItAF F-35B deployed in Pantelleria AB

The F-35B inside the hangar excavated inside the mountain before the Second World War

In the past few days, the Italian Air Force exercise “Proof of Concept Expeditionary” was held at the Pantelleria air base.

Took part in the exercise a Lockheed KC-130J, an Alenia C-27J (MM62214), a General Atomics MQ-9 drone and, above all, a Lockheed Martin F-35B (MM7453), short takeoff/vertical landing (STOVL) variant of the new air force fighter.

It is interesting that the runway of the Pantelleria air base is 4000 ft long while the minimum length to allow the take-off of an F-35A is 8000 ft. Currently the F-35B is the only fighter aircraft of the Italian Air Force that can be deployed on the Sicilian island and this exercise has also had the purpose of testing its use in an advanced base such as Pantelleria.

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