Airbus Military's first A330 Multi-Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) for the Royal Saudi Air Force is being readied for the installation of its mission equipment in Madrid, Spain, where the aircraft will undergo its conversion process to the tanker configuration. A total of 28 A330 MRTTs have been ordered to date by Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates and Australia. The Royal Australian Air Force will become the first operator of this next-generation aerial refuelling tanker, with deliveries of its A330 MRTTs beginning in 2010.
News in brief
Initial Royal Saudi Air Force A330 MRTT is delivered for conversion as a multi-role tanker transport
No. 1 A330-200F one step closer to November first flight
The no. 1 A330-200 Freighter has been painted in Airbus livery and is being prepared for its handover to the flight test department during the coming weeks. This will clear the way for ground tests leading to a maiden flight in November. Airbus' new mid-size, long-haul cargo aircraft - for which there are currently 67 firm orders from nine customers - has benefitted from an extensive weight saving exercise throughout its development, which is expected to translate into at least a half tonne more payload than initially published.
The Concorde's chief test pilot takes a ride on the A380
French pilot AndrÃ© Turcat's flight aboard an A380 test aircraft this month underscored Airbus' 40-year history of innovation. This 88-year-old European aviation pioneer - who first made history when he broke the world speed record over a 100-km. distance while flying a French Griffon experimental fighter aircraft in 1959, then manned the controls for the Concorde's maiden flight 10 years later - praised the A380's quietness, and remarked that he feels "right at home" in the Airbus 21st century flagship's cockpit.
Airbus to increase pilot training facilities in China
Marking another strategic milestone in its cooperation with the Chinese aviation industry, Airbus has partnered with HYLT Aviation Science and Technology Co. Ltd. to design and produce an A320 Airbus Pilot Transition Trainer in Tianjin, China. As part of the agreement, Airbus will provide this Chinese company with a flight training device software package, the Airbus Pilot Transition Trainer Data package (G05) and technical support such as training for HYLT engineers and specific expertise on the use of G05 data.
Advanced collision avoidance system mode approved for the A380
The European Aviation Safety Agency has approved a new Auto-Pilot/Flight-Director Traffic Collision Avoidance System (TCAS) mode for the A380, which could further enhance the safety of Airbus' 21s century flagship jetliner during a traffic avoidance situation. The new mode - which will become available for retrofit on other Airbus fly-by-wire aircraft in the coming years - simplifies the actions required by the pilot during a TCAS manoeuvre, minimising potential overreactions or inverse reactions during a critical time.
A400M moves to outdoor testing before first flight
Airbus Military's A400M multi-role airlifter is one step closer to its maiden flight, which is scheduled to take place before year-end. The no. 1 aircraft has been transferred from the Final Assembly Line in Seville, Spain to an outdoor ground test station, where fuel and pressurisation tests will be performed, along with other system checks. Its four engines and auxiliary power unit will then be installed, clearing the way for final calibrations ahead of the first takeoff.
Airbus Corporate Jet Centre outfits third ACJ with VIP cabin
The Airbus Corporate Jet Centre is reinforcing its reputation as a quality outfitter for high-end business jets with the completion of its third VIP cabin on an Airbus ACJ. Designed for a private customer, this cabin seats just over 30 passengers and includes such features as touch-screen technology, advanced passenger entertainment and communications, plus a tail-mounted camera. The Airbus Corporate Jet Centre - located in Toulouse, France - has now booked a total of 10 contracts for cabin outfitting from customers in Asia, Europe and the Middle East.
First A330 is delivered for conversion as UK military aerial tanker
The initial A330 for the UK's Future Strategic Tanker Aircraft (FSTA) programme has arrived ahead of schedule at Airbus Military's Getafe, Madrid, facilities, where it will be converted into a Multi-Role Tanker Transport (MRTT). A total of 14 A330 MRTTs will be provided for use by the Royal Air Force in aerial refuelling of military aircraft, and the airlift of troops and cargo. In addition to the UK, the A330 MRTT has been selected by the air forces of Australia, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
Third A400M fuselage section leaves Bremen for Seville FAL
Airbus teams in Bremen, Germany have delivered the 32-metre long integrated fuselage assembly section of the third A400M airlifter - designated "MSN003" - to the Seville, Spain final assembly line. This fuselage already is equipped with all flight-relevant mechanical and electrical systems, as well as complete interior furnishings such as linings and cargo floor systems. The next step for MSN003 will be joining its fuselage with the cockpit, followed by the join-up of wings, empennage and landing gear before the test campaign starts.
Goodwill flights bring aid to Central and South America
Ferry flights organised by the Airbus Corporate Foundation have recently provided assistance to Latin America. Colombian flag carrier Avianca's newest A330-200 transported more than four tonnes of humanitarian aid provided by French charity Aviation Sans FrontiÃ¨res - including clothes, shoes, blankets, wheelchairs, and school supplies - from Toulouse to Bogota. Meanwhile, San Salvador-based TACA's latest A321 flew from Hamburg to El Salvador, carrying dialysis machines and other medical equipment destined for hospitals in Central America. These supplies were donated by the Honorary Consul of El Salvador.
Orders & deliveries
- Customers & operators list