NATO’s Air Policing mission in Iceland welcomes Norway’s support. Royal Air Force has sent four F-35 Lighting II fighters to that mission. The move marked the first deployment abroad for the Royal Norwegian Air Force’s most innovative fighter, Defence Blog reported.
The NATO Iceland mission formally called Airborne Surveillance and Interception Capabilities to meet Iceland’s Peacetime Preparedness Needs. Its main task is monitoring the airspace in and around Iceland while ensuring that all air traffic is identified.
This week, Norway sent several F-35s to Iceland because the North country has no military. In 2013, NATO had re-designated the deployments to Iceland as being the “Airborne Surveillance and Interception Capabilities to meet Iceland’s Peacetime Preparedness Needs” mission, and emphasised to reporters that it was focused on training rather than air policing.
According to the Pentagon, the F-35 designed to replace a wide range of ageing fighter and strike aircraft currently in the inventories of the U.S. Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps and NATO defence forces.
F-35 as the next-generation fighter for NATO
The F-35 Lightning II is a stealthy, supersonic, multirole fighter designed to meet the requirements of the United States and allied defence forces worldwide for an affordable next-generation fighter.
The Lockheed Martin, an F-35 producer, guarantees its affordability, survivability, sustainability and lethality. In general, the F-35 program’s above-mentioned hallmarks are achieved through the use of the most modern military aircraft technologies, state-of-the-art production facilities, and a high degree of commonality.
As of 2020, more than 490 aircraft, including 134 in 2019, have been delivered and are operating from 21 bases around the globe. Globally, more than 975 pilots and 8,585 maintainers have been trained and the F-35 fleet has surpassed more than 240,000 cumulative flight hours.