TUSAS Aerospace Industries, Inc. (TAI) has been participating in the design and feasibility activities since the beginning of the A400M programme. The first A400M component Rear Fuselage Section 17 Upper Panel, designed and produced by TAI, delivered to Bremen-Germany held at TAI facilities on 4 April 2006 on 15:30 hours.
A400M components, design and production of which is in responsibility of TAI, ferried to the different Airbus production sites in Europe with Airbus A300-600ST known as Beluga, one of the largest cargo carriers in the world.
Being a partner and member of Airbus Military S.L., TAI has not only been participating in the design and feasibility activities of the A400M program, but also representing Turkey as “National Industrial Institution” since the beginning of the program. The A400M contract, which is considered to be an important step towards the integration of the Turkish industry into the European aviation industry, was signed in May 2003.
Within the framework of the program, a total of 180 A400M aircraft will be produced and delivered to the launch customers namely; Belgium 7, France 50, Germany 60, Luxembourg 1, Spain 27, Turkey 10 and the United Kingdom 25. The A400M’s first flight is scheduled to take place in early 2008 and first deliveries will be realized from 2009.
To compensate for the 10 A400M aircraft to be procured by Turkey, TAI will undertake a structural work share corresponding to 7.15% of the total work. TAI’s structural work package includes forward-center fuselage, paratroop doors and hatch doors, tail cone and top shell on rear fuselage, ailerons/spoilers, and the systems work package, which is 1.26%, comprises lighting and water/waste systems.
With the A400M program, TAI, which shifts to “build-to-design” from “build-to-print,” will obtain a Design Organization Approval (JAR-21 Part JA) under Airbus Military S.L. Consequently, TAI will become a company that has control over all the processes, including design, test, certification and delivery.
The A400M is the first international programme, in which TAI will contribute to all of the design and development, production and after-sales support processes. This marks the beginning of the Turkish Defense Industry taking a major role in other international programmes. With this program, TAI will make a considerable contribution to Turkey and the Turkish aviation industry in terms of technological benefits, added value, employment and export potential, and thus put its stamp on another first.