Marine Corps conducts first cross-deck aviation mission with F-35B from foreign aircraft carrier

By Aidan Quigley / August 23, 2021 at 11:42 AM

The Marine Corps announced Friday that Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 211 had conducted the first-of-its-kind cross-deck aviation mission with an F-35B from a foreign aircraft carrier.

The service said an F-35B aircraft launched Friday from the British aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth and landed on the amphibious assault ship America (LHA 6) to “load ordnance, refuel, and strike follow-on objectives.”

The mission was the first time in “modern history” that the United States cross-decked aircraft for a mission with a foreign aircraft carrier, according to the Marine Corps’ press release. The mission reflects the service’s increased distributed maritime operations ability, the Marine Corps said.

“The multi-national maritime aviation operation extends the reach of the F-35, enabling the 5th-generation aircraft to effect objectives farther away, for extended amounts of time, and with increased ordnance capacity,” the Marine Corps said.