The search for the crashed F-35 Fighter starts a frantic race after it gets lost in the sea, forcing the pilot to eject due to technical problems.
Military sources say the stealth jet went down in the morning while in a routine flight after leaving the HMS Queen Elizabeth.
Top secret planes like it when it meets an accident are usually retrieved so the debris and components are recovered sooner.
Loss of an advance fighter is cause for concern
The HMS Queen Elizabeth is one of the few aircraft carriers with a whole squadron of Lightning II's, the reported loss of even one is of serious concern.
UK's flagship aircraft carrier Queen Elizabeth has the most advanced squadron on its deck; loss anyone is a big deal with a price tag of £100m for the jump jet, reported the Sun UK.
Before the plane hit the water, the pilot managed to get out. It broke up while hitting the water.
A search and rescue Merlin helicopter located the down the pilot. Later, he was onboard the QE, cited the Independent UK.
Based on the flight path of the hit-tech jet fighter, it experiences problems between Cyprus and Egypt at 10 AM (UK Time).
The lost RAF F-35 starts a frantic search over where the plane went down. One chief priority for all the search crews involved is to keep it from Russian hands. Fortunately, the Mediterranean Sea is not so deep making the search less harder.
Units of the Royal Navy involved in the search might be racing with the subs of Vladimir Putin to find the wreckage first.
The thought if any of the debris from the downed 5th gen fighter gets recovered by the Russians who are familiar with the area is a harrowing thought. Technology on the plane wreck will be most valuable for its stealth fighter program.
Officials talk about the accident
British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace told Sky News that the pilot ejected safely soon after he noticed that something was wrong with the aircraft. He added that the pilot is a naval aviator.
Def Sec Wallace informed the pilot is safe and uninjured, but he added that mishaps would occur and cannot be avoided in the case of such planes like the Lightning II. Operation on an aircraft carrier in a maritime environment is challenging for the best weapon systems.
The unit is almost undetectable by radar due to a low radar reflect and systems on it are only found on it. Hence, the urgency to locate it.
Royal Air Force 617 squadron is the unit the lost aircraft is assigned to. This is a group of RAF specialist descent from 1943's Dambusters.
An F-35 could do a short rolling takeoff and vertical landing which can malfunction anytime due to its complex nature, but human error can factor too.
This is the second unit that has crashed so far, with a good safety record till now. The planes have seen action in Iraq and Syria as strike aircraft. A lost RAF F-35 Fighter starts a frantic search due to the top-secret nature of its systems that cannot be allowed to be copied by any foreign power.