In beast mode, the F-35 can carry four times more ammunition than stealth mode. The F-35 can carry 22,000 pounds with its internal weapons storage and exterior mounts.
The Graceful F-35 Has a “Beast Mode” The F-35 is a sleek, smart fighter with futuristic features emphasizing stealth and precision. Perception is correct to a point. The F-35 is a fifth-generation stealth aircraft with a supercomputer that enables sophisticated network connectivity and data sharing. Nevertheless, the F-35 can transform into a crude, brutish “bomb truck” when needed, a configuration known as “Beast Mode.”
The F-35 was designed to fly through contested airspace and attack ground and air targets undetected. It would give it air superiority. To operate in stealth mode, the F-35 has an internal weapons bay.
A weapons bay on the inside of an aircraft lets it carry weapons without putting them on the outside, making it more visible to radar and less stealthy.
Putting bombs and missiles under your wings and fuselage at sharp angles will make the enemy radar go off. The F-35 and F-22 carry their weapons internally in their sleek, radar-evading fuselage. Just so much can be crammed into an internal weapons bay, while In stealth mode, the F-35 may carry few weapons.
The F-35 can only carry 5,700 pounds of the internal ordinance in stealth mode, which is merely four AIM-120 AMRAAM missiles for air-to-air missions. That is simply two AMRAAM missiles and two GBU-31 JDAM bombs for air-to-air and air-to-surface hybrid missions.
Little. Nevertheless, sometimes evasion is required. Stealth mode becomes irrelevant as a war proceeds and an adversary’s anti-air systems (sensors, air defense missiles, gun systems, and enemy aircraft) are destroyed. When stealth is no longer needed, the F-35 enters “Beast Mode” to increase firepower.
In beast mode, the F-35 can carry four times more ammunition than stealth mode. The F-35 can carry 22,000 pounds of munitions in its internal weapons bay and exterior mounts. 14 AIM-120 AMRAAMs and two AIM-3X Sidewinders are used for air-to-air missions.
For hybrid missions, the F-35 can carry two AMRAAMs, two Sidewinders, and six JDAM 2,000-pounders. Beast mode, indeed. The F-35’s operational range is reduced to 1,400 kilometers when fully loaded.
It might not make sense for an aircraft designed to be stealthy to lose its stealthiness and be used as a bomb truck, a job that bulkier planes like the F-15 and B-1 can do.
Nevertheless, that scenario makes more sense than employing the F-35, a $1.7 trillion program, in the opening few days of a fight before air superiority is established or sending it on bombing runs with 5,700 pounds of ordinance.
The F-35 must be able to participate in all tactical operations for the US, which invades and occupies.