By Kris Osborn - Warrior Maven
**Warrior Maven Video Above****
The Air Force has begun early testing, software development and weapons integration for its upcoming Block 4 variant of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, an emerging model intended to give the multi-role fighter a new dimension of weapons and attack mission possibilities, service leaders said.
The new version, to emerge in the early 2020s, will add new long-range precision-tracking weapons such as the newly named StormBreaker weapon - previously called the Small Diameter Bomb II.
"StormBreaker™ successfully completed Developmental Testing and the Government Confidence Testing phase earlier this year. StormBreaker demonstrated all operating modes, the capability to send, receive, and process data-link messages via both link-16 and UHF, Tara Wood, an official with Raytheon's weapons development unit, told Warrior Maven.
Kris Osborn became the Managing Editor of Warrior Maven in August of 2015 . Osborn previously served at the Pentagon as a Highly Qualified Expert with the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army - Acquisition, Logistics & Technology. Osborn has also worked as an anchor and on-air military specialist at CNN and CNN Headline News.
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*********The Pentagon plans to fly the F-35 until 2070********
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