A 17 Squadron F-35B Lightning hit a moving target in an exercise, here’s the video.

The Squadron stood up at Edwards AFB, California in 2013 as a joint RAF/Royal Navy Test and Evaluation Squadron for the new F-35B Lightning. No. 17(R) Squadron is currently made up of half RAF/RN personnel.

Equipped with 3 F-35B aircraft (ZM135, ZM136 and ZM138), it continues operational test and evaluation tasks related to the F-35B, required to bring the aircraft and its weapons into UK service.

It operates within the Joint Operational Test Team for F-35 at Edwards AFB, flying operational test sorties alongside all variants from the USAF, USN, USMC and Royal Netherlands Air Force, as part of the UK Partnership within the F-35 programme. It’s currently embedded with the 461st Flight Test Squadron of the United States Air Force.


  1. Our GR1’s were doing this decades ago, so nothing remarkable about this.

    I’m more interested in the weapon used. LGB or Brimstone? I assume LGB.

  2. There’s f35 squadrons and pilots from almost all countrys buying them in America, just shows how much American is a superpower with all the space and time to embed foreign nations into there millitary system. A true superpower. And USA having the b1 lancer (my favourite US bomber) the b52 and b2 spirit bombers always impresses me for some reason.

      • The USAF will be retiring them as the Raider comes online. Most of their airframe life left too like the C5s. Either Oz or the UK ought to buy a couple squadrons (and spares) at I’m sure fire sale prices. Major leap in capability there. They’re all being modernized regardless of planned retirement and can already carry the LRASM… A Bone would look good in RAF livery.


        • Agree, we should and could get a great deal on buying some B1s rom USA, and being one of Americas best allies I’m sure we would get all the tech and armourment options available making it a great piece of kit for the RAF. One can Dream…. what an aircraft it is.??????

        • Your prediction on the appearance of the Raider Helions?

          I’m a keen follower of the black budget and those funny things you have flying over Nevada and other areas of the western US.

          Am updated flying wing like the B2 or something else entirely?

          3 flying wings which were not B2s, having a differing trailing edge, were filmed over Kansas years back. Teats of the Raider orcnaybe MQ180.

          • :D:D:D Hate my keyboard too Daniele! The Raider is apparently on schedule but under close wraps for obvious reasons. The Chinese are full court pressing to get a look. I believe the first prototypes are actually flying and have been for several years which accounts for the sighting of the flying wings over the U.S. West.


            We are really getting concerned about China and the U.S. mil is gearing up as quickly as possible for what seems to be (very unfortunately) an almost inevitable confrontation with them. Not so much instigated by the U.S. but by the Chinese trying to distract their population from a looming financial crisis of epic proportions in that country…

            Thus isn’t going to end well IMHO… The CCP won’t lose control of the country without burning down everything in the process. I think an invasion of Taiwan will be that test of wills…


          • Thanks Helions.

            Don’t like the sound of the China business at all.

            Agree the B21 and numerous other undisclosed aircraft have been flying for decades, in some cases.

            Would love to live out west myself and go looking with Camera for that chance glimpse.


          • There are other places apart from Groom. I would guess the DoD encourage spotters there while Plant 42, Dugway and other places are under the radar.

            Good link I will check that though.

            The MQ180 or maybe B21 is said to make use of the huge hanger recently built at the southern end of the runway, close enough to land and get in cover quickly without spending time on the ramp and far enough away from others without need to know.

          • You’re correct Daniele, Groom Lake isn’t the primary focus for testing new aircraft and tech as much as it used to be due to all the publicity. Increasingly Dugway and Yuma (among other areas) have been used to take advantage of their remoteness and difficulty to access.

            Having said that a lot apparently still happens at Groom to take advantage of the instrumented Tonopah Test range which is also where the a good chunk of the USAF’s Red Flag combat training exercises occur (also very familiar to the RAF and FAA) along with the USN’s Fallon range. Palmdale is noly a hop, skip, and jump from there as well. Been there many time myself. Pretty desolate region to say the least…


  3. Ashamed to say I never realized LGB were air burst munitions! Less collateral damage with directed fragmentation I presume?

  4. I do sometimes wonder why people get so indignant about posts that they can simply read and ignore.
    The effort to reply with snide comments should perhaps be reserved for something more useful.
    A free article, uncontencious, relating to and linking with a post on Instagram by 17 Squadron.
    From me, accept my thanks to the author of the piece and UKDJ.
    Incidentally, the reason it has been posted is due to the MoDs public relations department eventually being dragged, kicking and screaming, into the 1980s. They are trying to give the asset ‘owner’s, the taxpayers, an insight into where their hard earned taxes are spent.
    Expect more of these pieces. I for one welcome the adjusted approach. I believe it is a public servant’s responsibility to keep the general public informed about their work, equipment and routines, security and in-confidence issues aside.

    • it is also the governments duty. the civil servants who do contribute to the u.k are entitled to respect, they rarely or never get the fact that they are lead by political morons is not their fault.

    • Nah, cluster bombs are different. Cluster bombs emit lots of smaller explosives than then individually explode, hence a very high chance of undetonated ones from any “duds”.

      This is an airburst. A single explosion to send inert shrapnel around. Shrapnel isn’t dangerous when it stops moving. Its just metal. Cluster submunitions ARE still dangerous when they stop, as they are tiny bombs.

  5. Nobody seems to notice that the jeep keeps on driving thru the airburst. It may have lost its hood but it is not destroyed. An APC would have continued.

  6. Yeah but if you watch carefully and had the vid continued the truck rolls on happily apparently unscathed – so yeah they missed!

    • The truck was probably on a winch wire.
      That’s the kind of work that you don’t ask for volunteer drivers 🙂
      The over pressure and shrapnel would have made it a kill.

  7. The truck was probably on a winch wire.
    That’s the kind of work that you don’t ask for volunteer drivers 🙂
    The over pressure and shrapnel would have made it a kill.


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