The formal transfer of authority from F-16 to F-35 took place at Evenes Air Base in northern Norway. The event is a historical milestone for the Norwegian Armed Forces and the Royal Norwegian Air Force, which ended the F-16 fleet's 42 year-long mission serving Norway and NATO.
The introduction of the new fighter jets has been a great success, thanks to our passionate and talented personnel and partners
"F-35 has now received the baton from F-16, continuing to keep a constant guard. I sense a great pride today. The introduction of the new fighter jets has been a great success, thanks to our passionate and talented personnel and partners", says Major General Rolf Folland, Chief of the Royal Norwegian Air Force.
Norway conducts the QRA mission on behalf of NATO. This means that Norway continuously has to fighter jets on standby at all times. Photo by Torbjørn Kjosvold, Norwegian Armed Forces
For the past decades, Norway's fleet of F-16s has carried out the QRA on behalf of NATO from Bodø Air Base in northern Norway. Now, the F-35s handle this mission from Evenes Air Base a little further north. Evenes is currently under development and construction to house both F-35s and the coming fleet of P-8 Poseidon Maritime Patrolling Aircraft.
Norway continuously has fighter jets on standby at all times to carry out the QRA and AP mission above Norwegian air space. If any unknown aircraft come close to Norwegian and NATO airspace, the F-35s are scrambled. Then they find, observe and escort any unknown aircraft that come close to Norway and NATO airspace.