in Aerospace / Defence

Airbus delivers the 100th A400M

Posted 25 May 2021 · Add Comment

Airbus has reached 100 A400M deliveries with MSN111, the 10th A400M for the Spanish Air Force.

Copyright Airbus 

The aircraft performed its ferry flight on 24th May from Seville to Zaragoza, where the Spanish A400M fleet is based.

In the same week, the A400M global fleet also achieved the 100,000 flight-hours landmark performing missions worldwide for all eight customer nations.

All A400M operators have been able to operate the aircraft intensively for Covid-19 emergency response missions, as well as conduct joint, collaborative operations, demonstrating the maturity of the A400M programme on all fronts.

New capabilities
Recently the A400M successfully conducted a major helicopter air-to-air refuelling certification flight test campaign in coordination with the DGA (French Directorate General of Armaments), completing the majority of its certification objectives, including the first simultaneous refueling of two helicopters.

The A400M is already able to drop up to 116 paratroopers, via simultaneous dispatch from the side doors with automatic parachute opening, or from the ramp with automatic parachute opening or in freefall, day and night. Recent tests were completed in Spain, in collaboration with the UK Royal Air Force parachute test team, to expand up to 25,000 feet (7,600 metres) for automatic parachute opening - and up to 38,000ft (11,582 metres) for free fall.

The A400M also completed additional tests to expand its air drop capability, including multiple platforms with parachute extraction (23 tonnes). France and Spain participated in these flights. Another way to deliver cargo on austere airstrips without handling equipment was also certified: Combat offload of up to 19 tonnes of pallets (one pass) or 25 tonnes (two passes) on paved or unpaved airstrips.

The A400M also achieved a new decisive milestone after the certification flights of its Automatic Low Level Flight capability for Instrumental Meteorological Conditions (IMC). Using navigation systems and terrain databases, without the need of a terrain-following radar, this is a first for a military transport aircraft. This makes the aircraft less detectable in hostile areas and less susceptible to threats while conducting operations in hostile environments.

In terms of collaborative missions, the Spanish Air Force supported the French Armée de l´Air in the transport of a Caracal helicopter from Cazaux (France) to Tucson (USA), using a Spanish A400M. The flight was used by CLAEX (Spanish Logistics Center for Armament and Experimentation) and CECTA (Air Transport Cargo Evaluation Cell) to validate the loading process on Spanish A400Ms.

Key military missions last year included the delivery of almost 40 tonnes of food, water, fuel and ammunition by a single French A400M to troops based in the Sahel region of Africa, the first A400M to airdrop supplies in a country outside of Europe.

In addition, Germany became the first A400M customer to use the A400M as a tanker in real missions providing support in the “Counter Daesh” operation in Jordan.

In 2020 and 2021, the A400M was used in civil emergency response roles during the COVID-19 pandemic crisis, not least for civil medical evacuation (medevac) duties - with Airbus providing critical support for air force operators – as well as for transporting key medical relief supplies.  The versatility of the aircraft also allowed a rapid conversion to medevac configuration, where installed critical care modules provided airborne intensive care units.

 

Other Stories
Advertisement
Latest News

A generation inspired by Tim Peake

Today marks the fifth anniversary of Tim Peake's Soyuz space capsule landing in the Kazakhstan desert as he returned from a six-month expedition to the International Space Station (ISS) and now hundreds of people have shared their

EasyJet adds to its domestic network

EasyJet is adding three new UK airports to its domestic network, which includes launching operations from Belfast City Airport for the first time to London Gatwick, plus an additional 12 new domestic flights across its entire network,

Summer Astronaut Job Camp to be held at Shetland Space Centre

Children will be able to participate in 'astronaut teacher' Mike Mongo’s Astronaut Job Camp, hosted from Shetland Space Centre this summer, with fees paid for.

London City Airport partners with Collinson on expanded testing facilities

London City Airport has announced it is expanding its testing capabilities with a new, larger facility in partnership with Collinson, the expert in global medical assistance and travel experiences.

MEP sets up its first US facility

Kent based manufacturer of complex plastic and metal components for aerospace and defence, MEP Ltd. (MEP), is investing $6.4 million to establish its first US operation in Cyber Park - jointly owned by the City of Danville and

BA launches new services from Belfast

British Airways is launching four new domestic routes from Belfast this summer, supporting important business and tourism links between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK.

See us at
DSEI bt1602170921RAF Museum BTSpace Comm Expo BT