The US Navy’s America-class amphibious assault ship USS Tripoli (LHA 7) has achieved certification to conduct fixed-wing flight operations.

It follows the landing of an F-35B Lighting II from Marine Strike Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 122 aboard the ship.

The touchdown, which took place on 11 January, marks the first time the new fifth generation fighter landed on the LHA 7.

Tripoli commanding officer captain Joel Lang said: “This is what Tripoli was built for. The crew and supporting organisations have worked incredibly hard to get us to the point where we can launch and recover aircraft, rising to every challenge the Navy has put before them since we commissioned.”

To accomplish this milestone, the flight deck crew sailors have trained their entire careers to run flight operations, the navy stated.

According to the US Navy, USS Tripoli has been steadily operating and training the crew for ongoing flight operations with VMFA-122.

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USS Tripoli and the Marines, who operate the fighter jet, shared much coordination to bring the aircraft to the ship.

VMFA-225 landing signal officer major Randy Brazile said: “It was an honour to support Tripoli in accomplishing such an important event.

“The Marines and pilots from VMFA-122 and (Marine Operational Test and Evaluation Squadron) VMX-1 are excited to see Tripoli achieve its fixed-wing flight certification.”

Commissioned in July 2020, USS Tripoli is homeported in San Diego and operates under commander, Expeditionary Strike Group (ESG) 3.