"One of the key defining attributes of a fifth-generation [F-35] fighter is the force multiplier effect it brings to joint operations through its foremost sensor fusion and external communications capabilities," Lockheed Martin Aeronautics executive Orlando Carvalho said. "Those attributes were successfully proven at White Sands Missile Range in a very realistic demonstration of distributed lethality leveraging" Aegis and the F-35B.
In Monday’s test of what the US military calls Naval Integrated Fire Control-Counter Air, the F-35B acted as an elevated sensor, detected an over-the-horizon target and sent data to a ground station connected to the Aegis-equipped USS Desert Ship, a land-based Navy vessel at White Sands, the release stated.
The target was subsequently engaged and shot down by Aegis munitions aboard the Desert Ship, Lockheed Martin said.
Using the F-35 as a broad-area sensor significantly increases Aegis’s capability to detect, track and engage, the release said.