February 20, 2012 defense-aerospace.com
(Source: Netherlands Ministry of Defence; issued February 15, 2012)
The first Joint Strike Fighter designated for the Netherlands has had its jet engine installed. The Netherlands has thus far ordered two of these F-35 fighter aircraft as test aircraft.
Personnel of Lockheed Martin installed the Pratt & Whitney engine, which measures 5.5 by almost 1.5 metres. Production is running according to schedule.
The aircraft, to which the air force will give tail number F-001, was transferred to the last assembly line in the factory in October 2011. Lockheed Martin has scheduled ground tests for late March 2012. That will include testing of the fuel system and the radar equipment. That phase will be followed by the first test flights.