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Are the F-117s based at Tonopah Test Range still in service? I heard from some reputable sources they are still flying around and being maintained, but someone else told me they are going away permanently. Does anyone know what's up with the F-117s right now?

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    $\begingroup$ The Lockheed F-117 Nighthawk article on Wikipedia has a whole section on "Later service and retirement" that details the current status with many references. $\endgroup$ – Greg Hewgill Nov 14 '16 at 22:08
  • $\begingroup$ Wiki articles were interesting. There is something up with the F-117 ibut I don't know what. Just trying to find out anything anyone knows. In the end is usually about money and contracts. There are portable toilets at IceCap on the old Nevada Test Site.... the test tower was put up in 1992 over the hole. I would like to have had the contract to sevice the "AndyGumps" ... they are there for the test site tourists I guess. IceCap is the last underground test still standing on the now NNSS. $\endgroup$ – Roger Dodger Nov 14 '16 at 22:54
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Some F-117s under storage (not in active service) were still flying sometime back because their storage type required for it. Attributed to USAF by http://intercepts.defensenews.com/2014/11/we-now-know-why-the-f-117-is-still-flying/:

Per Congressional direction within the FY07 National Defense Authorization Act the aircraft were placed in Type 1000, flyable storage for potential recall to future service. In order to confirm the effectiveness of the flyable storage program, some F-117 aircraft are occasionally flown.

The same article gives some details about the type 1000 storage:

Aircraft in Type 1000 storage are to be maintained until recalled to active service, should the need arise. Type 1000 aircraft are termed inviolate; meaning they have a high potential to return to flying status and no parts may be removed from them. These aircraft are ‘re-preserved’ every four years.

However, this may soon change as the House Armed Services Committee’s version of the National Defense Authorization Act repeals the 2007 provision for storage:

This section would amend section 136 of the John Warner National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2007 (Public Law 109-364) by striking subsection (b), which would remove the requirement that certain F-117 aircraft be maintained in a condition that would allow recall of those aircraft to future service.

So, while F-117s are not in USAF service, some were still flying (until recently) though they are probably going away for good soon.

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  • $\begingroup$ I am going to find you a link, since there is a play to retire 4 per year for the next few years until they are all divested, per the 2017 defense authorization act (DoD budget). There is some 2.1 billion dollar project that allegedly moves some of these aircraft to aliied air forces. will get back to you $\endgroup$ – KorvinStarmast Nov 4 '17 at 17:32
  • $\begingroup$ Being demilled link is here. I need to ask a few old buds, I saw an article about some 2.1 billion dollar project on the F-117 that alluded to some of our allies getting some, but now I can't find it. Will follow up. $\endgroup$ – KorvinStarmast Nov 4 '17 at 17:42

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