Regardless your thoughts on the F-35 program, or billion-dollar fighter jets in general, thereā€™s still something inherently amazing about mid-air refuelling: two man-made machines, probably hundreds of miles from home, hooking up in mid-air and transferring aerial lifeblood from one to another.

These shots were taken during a dusk refuelling sortie, where the F-35B sucked from both a KC-10 and KC-135 tanker aircraft. The mission was part of the F-35ā€™s buildup of tests to certify it for full night flight, a vital stepping stone on the long, long road to it actually becoming into service.

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Image credits: Lockheed Martin


Contact the author at chris@gizmodo.com.

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