The UK Royal Air Force (RAF) and the Royal Norwegian Air Force (RNoAF) have agreed to establish closer cooperation on F-35B Lightning II aircraft capabilities.

The cooperation follows RNoAF chief major general Rolf Folland’s recent visit to RAF Marham in Norfolk, East Anglia, UK, to learn and discover in detail about the RAF’s F-35B Lightning II capabilities, maintenance and training.

RAF Marham is also the home base for the RAF’s fifth generation, multi-role, stealth fighter F-35 aircraft.

During this visit, the RNoAF chief was also accompanied by RAF’s chief of air staff, air chief marshal Sir Michael Wigston.

The two officials discussed various joint opportunities to enhance and strengthen the capabilities of the two nations’ forces. This also includes furthering Lightning II collaboration, as RNoAF also operates an F-35A variant, as part of the global Lightning II community.

The Norwegian forces are also working to develop a wide range of operational capabilities to fly its F-35 fleet of 52 aircraft.

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The RNoAF F-35A Lightning II fleet has already started its new role as a ‘Quick Reaction Alert’ force in Norway. 

Wigston said: “The RAF and RNoAF share a rich history and it was a pleasure to welcome my counterpart back to the UK this week.

“We explored what more we could do in Nato and as Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF) partners ready to defend our collective security, working ever closer together across the North Atlantic, Northern Europe and the Arctic Region.”

Furthermore, the latest meeting provided an opportunity for both the nations’ officials to exchange ideas regarding various future maritime capabilities such as the P8 Poseidon aircraft, operated by both RAF and RNoAF to perform search and rescue duties.