Over the weekend, a concerning incident unfolded as an F-35B Lightning II, a part of the United States military’s advanced stealth combat aircraft fleet, went missing in South Carolina. The situation escalated after an incident that forced the pilot to eject from the jet, leaving the sophisticated aircraft unaccounted for.
The F-35 program, notorious for its staggering costs, is the most expensive US weapons program.
Each jet can cost up to $160 million; however, the F-35B variant that went missing on September 17 costs roughly $80 million, according to a report by NPR.
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To put this financial enormity into perspective, the missing F-35B jet equates to nearly 3,000 (2,967.56) Bitcoin (BTC) at the latest BTC price of $26,961.
The entire program is on track to cost $1.7 trillion over the lifetime of the plane, according to CNN, which is more than three times higher than BTC’s entire current market cap of $523.7 billion.
Unusual events occurred on September 17 when a US marine pilot ejected from their F-35B Lightning II jet north of the Charleston air base in South Carolina, following an incident that the military called a “mishap.”
The unidentified pilot safely ejected and was brought to a local hospital in stable condition.
Emergency teams then initiated a search for the combat aircraft, receiving help from the Navy, FAA, and Civil Air Patrol, as well as multiple local and state police agencies.
On Monday, September 18, reports said that debris had been located as the remains of an F-35 fighter jet.
According to a statement by the Joint Base Charleston, the debris field was identified around 2 hours northeast of the air base.
The statement also said Charleston was “transferring incident command” to the Marine Corps, which will now start the recovery process.