Missing Japanese F-35 found and being recovered, pilot status unknown




The Japanese F-35 aircraft that crashed somewhere over the Pacific Ocean was located and is now being recovered, according to Nikkei Asian Review .

The Japanese F-35 aircraft that crashed somewhere over the Pacific Ocean was located and is now being recovered, US Pacific Air Forces commander Gen. Charles Brown Jr. said, according to Japanese news company Nikkei Asian Review .

US and Japanese forces were involved in the search efforts ever since the aircraft crashed on April 9. Both militaries spared no expense on the intensive search, fearing that rival nations like China would find the $126 million fifth-generation aircraft.


The downed aircraft marked the first time an international ally has lost an F-35. Parts of the wreckage were previously discovered by search-and-rescue teams.

This particular F-35 was the first one assembled in a Mitsubishi Heavy Industries plant and was piloted by a veteran who had 3,200 hours of flying time, according to Defense News and Reuters . The pilot reportedly had 60 hours of flying time in the F-35.


The jet was reportedly diagnosed with cooling and navigation system problems in June 2017 and August 2018, according to the Japanese newspaper Mainichi Shimbun .

Other F-35s from Japan's fleet have displayed issues and conducted emergency landings in the past. Five of the jets reportedly made seven emergency landings and had problems related to its fuel and hydraulics systems.


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