Delivery of First A400M
(Source: French Ministry of Defence; issued Aug. 1, 2013)
(Issued in French only; unofficial translation by defense-aerospace.com)
The first production A400M Atlas military transport aircraft lands at the French air force base at Orleans-Bricy at the conclusion of its ferry flight from the Airbus Military factory in Seville, Spain. (Fr AF photo)
PARIS --- The Directorate General of Armaments (DGA) has taken delivery of the first production model of the A400M military transport aircraft. The aircraft, serial number MSN7, will tomorrow fly to Orleans Bricy air base, France’s main operating base for the aircraft’s introduction into the Air Force. The official ceremony to mark the event will be held later, in the presence of government authorities.
The first delivery is the culmination of a long, complex and painstaking process between the industry teams of Airbus Military, the technical teams of the seven partner nations and OCCAR, the organization for joint armaments cooperation (OCCAR).
The process included:
- civil and military certifications concerning the safety of the aircraft, which were completed a few days ago;
- Qualification, which consists of verifying that the actual aircraft performance conforms with contractual specifications; this was issued July 31;
- The hand-over of aircraft MSN7, which includes verification of the aircraft, on the ground and in flight, by engineers, test pilots and quality control specialists of DGA.
It should be noted that the crew which will fly MSN7 from its production site in Seville (Spain) to Orleans-Bricy air base is composed exclusively of Air Force personnel. Since January, they and ground support personnel have been training to operate the A400M at several sites in Europe: Toulouse (France), Seville (Spain) and Bremen (Germany).
A military transport aircraft designed for strategic and tactical at the forefront of technology, the A400M is unparalleled in the world market. Powered by four turboprop engines, the A400M is designed to carry up to 37 tonnes and carry out all the tasks related to transport, including intra- and inter-theater operations, assault landings on semi-prepared fields, air dropping personnel and equipment including from very high altitudes, refueling and medical evacuations.
Seven customer countries are participating in the European A400M program: Germany, France, Spain, UK, Turkey, Belgium and Luxembourg. France is the first country to receive the A400M. (ends)
Airbus Military Delivers First A400M to French Air Force
(Source: Airbus Military; issued August 1, 2013)
Airbus Military has today formally delivered the first A400M new generation airlifter, which is known in French service as the A400M Atlas, to the French Air Force, a milestone marking the beginning of the transformation of military air transport in Europe and beyond.
This delivery, just authorized by the French procurement agency DGA, enables the aircraft, MSN7, to join tomorrow the French airbase of Orleans-Bricy where it will be based with the French Air Force.
This delivery represents the culmination of 10 years of development by Airbus Military and more than 5,000 flight-test hours, involving close to 40,000 people working for this major European defence programme.
Domingo Ureña said: “Today is a truly historic day for the European aerospace industry – marking the moment at which it becomes the new global leader in the military transport sector with an entirely new aircraft. I would like to express my sincere thanks to everyone at Airbus Military, Airbus and our suppliers whose unflagging efforts have made this enormous achievement possible, as well as our customers and OCCAR whose inputs over the years have been crucial to the success of the programme."
This first aircraft delivered to France will initially be used for the continuing training of aircrew before becoming part of the French Air Force operational transport fleet.
An official ceremony to celebrate the delivery in its Final Assembly Location in Sevilla will take place after the summer break.
The A400M is an all-new military airlifter designed to meet the needs of the world's Armed Forces in the 21st Century. Thanks to its most advanced technologies, it is able to fly higher, faster and further, while retaining high maneuverability, low speed, and short, soft and rough airfield capabilities. Powered by four 11,000shp TP400 turboprop engines made by EuroProp International, the most powerful ever designed in the West, it can carry up to 116 fully-equipped paratroopers or 37 tonnes of payload, and additionally can serve as an air-to-air refueller capable of refuelling fast jets, other large aircraft and helicopters.
It combines both tactical and strategic/logistic missions. With its cargo hold specifically designed to carry the outsize equipment needed today for both military and humanitarian disaster relief missions, it can bring this material quickly and directly to where it is most needed. Conceived to be highly reliable, dependable, and with a great survivability, the multipurpose A400M can do more with less, implying smaller fleets and less investment from the operator. The A400M is the most cost efficient and versatile airlifter ever conceived and absolutely unique in its capabilities.