First F-35 Squadron Plans Detailed
The first three squadrons of F-35s - with at least 59 aircraft - will be formed at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., between 2010, when the first aircraft arrives, and mid-2013 when No. 60 is due.
Of the three training squadrons to be stood up, one will be U.S. Air Force with 24 conventional takeoff aircraft, one will be Marine Corps with 20 short-takeoff-and-vertical-landing aircraft and the last, with 15 aircraft, will belong to the Navy.
The Air Force's bed-down decision involves temporary operational limitations on flight training to minimize noise impact in the nearby town of Valparaiso. Meanwhile, supplemental environmental studies will be conducted as the Air Force works on a final study on F-35 noise.
There are to be at least 10 JSF training squadrons formed. The Pentagon is looking at another 156 installations to determine the remaining JSF bases for operations, additional training, depots and combined active-duty/Air National Guard/Reserve units. Production of the F-35 is scheduled to end in 2035.