Aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth departed her home port of Portsmouth on Aug. 18, bound for the USA where she will take on board F-35B STOVL jet fighters for the very first time. The Royal Navy’s aircraft carrier will begin trials with her first F-35 jets.
The aircraft that will be landing on the supercarrier will belong to the Joint Operational Test team. The team’s mission is to build confidence in the aircraft towards helping clear the F-35 to make the legally mandated advance from Low Rate Initial Production to Full Rate Production.
A second carrier, HMS Prince of Wales, which is currently being fitted at Rosyth in Fife, Scotland, will not begin sea trials until next year.