Why the F-35s Crazy 'Beast Mode' Should Terrify North Korea, China (Or Anyone)

Mark Episkopos

Key point: The F-35 is seeing more success over time. Let's see if it endures.

Recently leaked video sheds light on one of the F-35’s possible weapons configurations, previously dubbed as “beast mode” in a Lockheed Martin infographic.

The video, dating back to November of 2018, depicts an F-35 simultaneously firing five air-to-surface missiles against five test targets. At least one of the targets-- a light vehicle-- can be seen moving.

Though it is presently unconfirmed where the trial took place and what kind of guided bomb was used, defense expert Ian D’Costa offered some clarifying insight to The Aviationist: “It’s an F-35 at NTTR (Nellis Test and Training Range), I could be wrong, but it [seems to be] dropping five Paveway IVs and hitting all five targets with GEOT (Good Effect On Target).”

While the site’s location remains disputed, the bombs depicted in the video are widely believed to be Paveway IV’s. Paveway IV is a 500-pound, British laser-guided bomb, described by the U.K military describes as “an advanced and highly accurate weapon that provides the RAF’s strike force with a state-of-the-art precision guided bombing capability.”

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