A state-of-the-art F-35B fighter jet crashed near Joint Base Charleston, with the pilot safely ejecting.

The aircraft's transponder malfunctioned, complicating the search for the downed plane.

Joint Base Charleston sought public assistance in locating the missing jet.

Both the Air Force and Federal Aviation Administration are assisting due to the proximity of the crash site to their facilities.

Lockheed Martin, the manufacturer, has not yet commented on the incident.

Any mishap involving the F-35, such as this crash, initiates an investigation.

The extent of damage and nature of the exercise at the time remain unclear.

Search efforts are focused on the vicinity of Lake Moultrie, a large body of water.

F-35s are renowned for their stealth capabilities but are also known for their high costs.

Lawmakers have criticized rising expenses associated with the F-35 program in recent years.