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mxaxai
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Fri Jun 18, 2021 10:29 am

Flying-Tiger wrote:
AKKA Technologies is now offering a quick-change solution for the A400M to be used as fire fighting aircraft with a capability of 20 tons.

https://www.journal-aviation.com/en/news/46135-the-airbus-a400m-soon-to-be-used-as-a-firefighting-aircraft

I think that´s a capability which is quite interesting to a number of air forces, and I would guess some of these kits to end up in Spain, France and Germany.

The kit has been designed for A400M and CASA C235 & C295 aircrafts but is also compatible with many other aircraft such as the C-130 Hercules, the Embraer KC-390 or the C-27J Spartan.

If it's effective and cheap enough, you could also find it in service with other air forces. Portugal, Italy and Greece regularly struggle with fires as well.
 
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keesje
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Fri Jun 18, 2021 10:51 am

A newLuftwaffe A400M youtube. https://youtu.be/gmIuPOJt4fg

Slow, more nerdy than Tom Cruise, no rock music but real sounds, long shots.

Good quality, details, checking on the coffee pre-flight, informal, no flag waving, down to earth, nice.
 
Noray
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Fri Jun 18, 2021 12:00 pm

mxaxai wrote:
Flying-Tiger wrote:
AKKA Technologies is now offering a quick-change solution for the A400M to be used as fire fighting aircraft with a capability of 20 tons.

https://www.journal-aviation.com/en/news/46135-the-airbus-a400m-soon-to-be-used-as-a-firefighting-aircraft

I think that´s a capability which is quite interesting to a number of air forces, and I would guess some of these kits to end up in Spain, France and Germany.

The kit has been designed for A400M and CASA C235 & C295 aircrafts but is also compatible with many other aircraft such as the C-130 Hercules, the Embraer KC-390 or the C-27J Spartan.

If it's effective and cheap enough, you could also find it in service with other air forces. Portugal, Italy and Greece regularly struggle with fires as well.

Germany used to have a similar system for the Transall, but it was rarely used and has been scrapped. For aerial firefighting, we now rely on helicopters which are more flexible since they don't require an airport for refilling and have shorter turnaround times.
 
744SPX
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Sun Jun 20, 2021 3:43 am

keesje wrote:
A newLuftwaffe A400M youtube. https://youtu.be/gmIuPOJt4fg

Slow, more nerdy than Tom Cruise, no rock music but real sounds, long shots.

Good quality, details, checking on the coffee pre-flight, informal, no flag waving, down to earth, nice.



Nice.
 
Noray
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Sun Aug 22, 2021 9:55 pm

Many A400Ms from Belgium/Luxemburg, France, Germany, Spain, Turkey and the UK are currently involved in the Kabul evacuation.

A short video of seven German A400Ms in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, Germany's hub for the operation.
https://twitter.com/Bw_Einsatz/status/1 ... 1463697414

Two of these were bringing H145M light utility helicopters to Kabul.
https://twitter.com/Bw_Einsatz/status/1 ... 0028412932
https://twitter.com/Bw_Einsatz/status/1 ... 1337636869

While there have been some headlines anout the first German A400M returning from Kabul with only seven passengers due to the chaotic situation there, subsequent flights carried up to ~ 230 passengers each.
https://twitter.com/Bw_Einsatz/status/1 ... 45/photo/1

A French A400M dispensing flares during takeoff from Kabul.
https://twitter.com/air_intel/status/14 ... 0926940160
I've read various explanations for this, the one I found the most compelling is that it's a bug: the open landging gear doors extend beyond the aircraft's sponsons, and as they close after takeoff, the IR sensor may suddenly see a piece of hot ground that the defence system considers a possible danger. (?)
 
889091
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Mon Aug 23, 2021 8:50 am

Noray wrote:
A French A400M dispensing flares during takeoff from Kabul.
https://twitter.com/air_intel/status/14 ... 0926940160
I've read various explanations for this, the one I found the most compelling is that it's a bug: the open landging gear doors extend beyond the aircraft's sponsons, and as they close after takeoff, the IR sensor may suddenly see a piece of hot ground that the defence system considers a possible danger. (?)


Wouldn't that (flare/chaff activation) affect all the A400Ms that have flown out of Kabul?
 
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Grizzly410
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Mon Aug 23, 2021 11:17 am

889091 wrote:
Noray wrote:
A French A400M dispensing flares during takeoff from Kabul.
https://twitter.com/air_intel/status/14 ... 0926940160
I've read various explanations for this, the one I found the most compelling is that it's a bug: the open landging gear doors extend beyond the aircraft's sponsons, and as they close after takeoff, the IR sensor may suddenly see a piece of hot ground that the defence system considers a possible danger. (?)


Wouldn't that (flare/chaff activation) affect all the A400Ms that have flown out of Kabul?


I'm not convinced by the explanation.
Sensors are located on the sides close to the cockpit on each side, and a third on the tailcone bottom. I believe only the rear one covers the bottom and this one is unlikely to be affected by the LG door movement.

location of the front sensor visible here. It's the black box above the 2 probes behind the cockpit. The rear one is more difficult to see, it's protuding a little bit at the very end of the tailcone.


IRC A400M operators doesn't use the same sensor system/provider (but share the location) so I find natural not all reacts the same in any case.
 
Noray
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Mon Aug 23, 2021 1:12 pm

889091 wrote:
Noray wrote:
A French A400M dispensing flares during takeoff from Kabul.
https://twitter.com/air_intel/status/14 ... 0926940160
I've read various explanations for this, the one I found the most compelling is that it's a bug: the open landging gear doors extend beyond the aircraft's sponsons, and as they close after takeoff, the IR sensor may suddenly see a piece of hot ground that the defence system considers a possible danger. (?)


Wouldn't that (flare/chaff activation) affect all the A400Ms that have flown out of Kabul?

As Grizzly410 wrote, not all nations have identical self protection systems. Also, not all flights take off in the heat of the day, the altitude during landing gear retraction may vary, and it might be that a certain degree of heat or other arbitrary conditions are needed to trigger the system.

Other explanations I read were that it detected a fire on the ground, that it's a software bug or a precautionary measure. Just for the record, in this video it happens as the landing gear is being retracted, which of course may be nothing but a coincidence.
 
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keesje
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Sun Aug 29, 2021 9:18 am

After the cold war, the A400M was specified for crisis situations like this in Middle East, Africa and similar regions.

Long range but tactical missions, logistics, heavy equipment, evacuations, relief missions, refuelling, helicopters, whatever comes up coming decades. Expensive but valuable assetts.

Image

https://twitter.com/Bw_Einsatz/status/1 ... 0028412932
 
 
Noray
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Wed Sep 01, 2021 12:22 pm

So Kazkhstan will be the ninth operator of the A400M. This is the first signing of a new contract since Malaysia joined the program in 2005. The total number of aircraft ordered is now 176.
 
Noray
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Wed Sep 01, 2021 1:11 pm

Some more facts about the Afghanistan evacuations:

From August 17th to August 26th, German A400Ms evacuated 5347 people in 35 flights out of Kabul, an average of 152,8 per flight. (German)

Spanish A400Ms evacuated 2206 people in 17 flights between Kabul and Dubai. (Spanish)

The record number of pax in a single A400M was reported by the French: 266, according to another source 270 people including 125 children.
 
Noray
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Wed Sep 01, 2021 4:58 pm

MrBren wrote:

Upon closer inspection, this seems to be the first time I've seen an A400M without the refuelling probe above the cockpit. Does this also hint at further cost-saving measures?
 
744SPX
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Wed Sep 01, 2021 5:03 pm

Looks a lot better without the refuelling probe. Although the back portion of the probe housing still appears to be on the aircraft. That must be an Airbus cost-saving measure.

Does Kazkhstan even have any air to air refuelling capability?

I hope more orders from new customers are forthcoming.
 
tommy1808
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Wed Sep 01, 2021 6:16 pm

Noray wrote:
MrBren wrote:

Upon closer inspection, this seems to be the first time I've seen an A400M without the refuelling probe above the cockpit. Does this also hint at further cost-saving measures?


The customer doesn't have tankers that could fuel it, and the A400M with a Tanker system couldn't fuel their combat aircraft.
So probably simply a cheap option they dropped.

Best regards
Thomas
 
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keesje
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Wed Sep 01, 2021 6:55 pm

tommy1808 wrote:
Noray wrote:
MrBren wrote:

Upon closer inspection, this seems to be the first time I've seen an A400M without the refuelling probe above the cockpit. Does this also hint at further cost-saving measures?


The customer doesn't have tankers that could fuel it, and the A400M with a Tanker system couldn't fuel their combat aircraft.
So probably simply a cheap option they dropped.

Best regards
Thomas


I think A400M can be refilled by A400M's and can fuel a number of different aircraft & helicopters. 2 Aircraft is critical, a few more over time is likely IMO.

Image
https://www.malaysiandefence.com/atlas- ... -flankers/
Last edited by keesje on Wed Sep 01, 2021 7:22 pm, edited 2 times in total.
 
Noray
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Wed Sep 01, 2021 7:01 pm

tommy1808 wrote:
and the A400M with a Tanker system couldn't fuel their combat aircraft.

Not sure about that point. Kazakhstan has SU-30s. A400Ms have refuelled Malaysia's Su-30s: Atlas Refuels Flankers
 
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Grizzly410
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Thu Sep 02, 2021 2:18 pm

Noray wrote:
MrBren wrote:

Upon closer inspection, this seems to be the first time I've seen an A400M without the refuelling probe above the cockpit. Does this also hint at further cost-saving measures?


Argh, so sorry I can't share funny anecdote I have about this no-fuel-probe configuration due to NDA.

For what I can say without breaking anything, I think cost saving for this choice will be limited to not acquisition/maintenance of the probe-equipment itself : very limited.
My opinion is that the no-probe thing may be more related to relation "export control" (political) than direct cost saving.

From Airbus side there is simply no cost saving to sell copy without the probe, on the contrary it's an added cost that I'm curious to see how it will be handled. What would be the industrial trade of between :
1- releasing new drawing sets (+ work orders, etc) to "not install" something from the CWB to the nose (~3 sections affected)
-2 just install everything as usual and only modify the end of the line plugging a cover instead the AAR probe after the fuel valve

My bet would be on #2.
 
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bikerthai
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Thu Sep 02, 2021 3:18 pm

It is a complex question. They can also remove the lines from the probe to the tanks. The cost of the lines are not much, but the related sensors for fuel leaks etc may be worth while. On the other hand keeping and maintaining the pipes would allow for higher re-sale, but would require some level of maintenance/ inspection.

by
 
mxaxai
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Thu Sep 02, 2021 3:37 pm

bikerthai wrote:
It is a complex question. They can also remove the lines from the probe to the tanks. The cost of the lines are not much, but the related sensors for fuel leaks etc may be worth while. On the other hand keeping and maintaining the pipes would allow for higher re-sale, but would require some level of maintenance/ inspection.

by

Not just fuel leaks, also fire detection, insulation, valves, ... the refueling probe is more than simple hose. However, the cost is still miniscule for the overall system. I agree with Grizzly that export control is a more likely motivation. There are also other (minor) functions or subsystems that may be unavailable for some export customers, IIRC there were some modifications for Malaysia and the offer to Indonesia.
 
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bikerthai
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Thu Sep 02, 2021 5:04 pm

Not sure about Europe, but the USML has it covered either way. Category VIII section 12 for airial refueling aircraft and section VIII section 14 for roll on roll off transport.

Not sure about the cost though. You would think not installing the system would save you millions in aquision cost vs the engineering cost of de-tabbing those systems from your configuration.

On the commercial side, optional systems are configured to be easily de-tabbed with minimal effort.

bt
 
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Grizzly410
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Thu Sep 02, 2021 6:52 pm

bikerthai wrote:
Not sure about Europe, but the USML has it covered either way. Category VIII section 12 for airial refueling aircraft and section VIII section 14 for roll on roll off transport.

Not sure about the cost though. You would think not installing the system would save you millions in aquision cost vs the engineering cost of de-tabbing those systems from your configuration.

Appart the probe itself it's only sensor, hose, valve, a light... what more? Nothing crazy I'd say, and all planned for 174/176 copy at least. Cost can't be significant to call a pair of extra set.
Installing as usual Airbus just have to remove the probe, put a cap on the fuel line and change the fairing. Barely anything more.

To remove everything engineering have to provide drawing sets accordingly, probably modify some assembly, call new parts. Than there is update industrialisation documentation (thus works), followed by customer documentation, all this instead of re-use existing.
bikerthai wrote:
On the commercial side, optional systems are configured to be easily de-tabbed with minimal effort.

bt

Indeed. But the AAR probe is the base config, by removing it you create the option. Keeping hardware is the minimal effort ;)
 
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JerseyFlyer
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Thu Sep 02, 2021 7:33 pm

Intriguing sale into Russian "sphere of influence". This must be an unanticipated market for Airbus in the sense of where they expected to sell when launching the A400M. Recent deployments to Kabul have demonstrated its capabilities to a wide audience, which could seed further sales to "unlikely" customers.

Is this an incremental order for Airbus or a reallocation from prior orders not now required?
 
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bikerthai
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Thu Sep 02, 2021 10:35 pm

Grizzly410 wrote:
Appart the probe itself it's only sensor, hose, valve, a light... what more? Nothing crazy I'd say, and all planned for 174/176 copy at least.


Yeah, but in the archane world of export control, I wouldn't be surprised if the refueling probe was an export issue, then so would the rest of the system. So out they would go no matter the cost. If it is just the probe, they I would say purely cost and a little weight saving.

Other point is if the refueling system is eliminated for export reason, the plane is still ITAR controlled under section 14. So how much paperwork are you saving by dropping section 12? But European regulation may be different. :optimist:

bt
 
Flying-Tiger
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Fri Sep 03, 2021 11:42 am

JerseyFlyer wrote:
Intriguing sale into Russian "sphere of influence". This must be an unanticipated market for Airbus in the sense of where they expected to sell when launching the A400M. Recent deployments to Kabul have demonstrated its capabilities to a wide audience, which could seed further sales to "unlikely" customers.

Is this an incremental order for Airbus or a reallocation from prior orders not now required?


The wording in the press release implies an incremental order as their refer to 176 frames sold.

Further reporting at FlightGlobal confirms this:

Schoellhorn confirms that the Kazakh commitment will increase the total A400M order book to 176 aircraft, with the pair to be produced in addition to outstanding orders from its European launch customers.


A quote at Air & Space Internationals further implies that there are additional annoucement(s) pending:

The Kazakh order brings the number of A400Ms sold to 176, a figure that Michael Schoellhorn, CEO of Airbus D&S, “expects to increase in the near future.”
 
finnishway
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Mon Sep 06, 2021 5:06 pm

Just out of curiosity asking that would it be possible (at least in theory) for commercial cargo airline to operate A400M?

To my knowledge A400M has civil certification so does it mean that any airline could buy that aircraft? It may not make sense financially, but just thinking that there could be small market for this kind of special commercial operations.
 
tommy1808
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Mon Sep 06, 2021 7:01 pm

finnishway wrote:
Just out of curiosity asking that would it be possible (at least in theory) for commercial cargo airline to operate A400M?

To my knowledge A400M has civil certification so does it mean that any airline could buy that aircraft? It may not make sense financially, but just thinking that there could be small market for this kind of special commercial operations.


Yes, Airbus suggested that a couple of years back for Charter operators flying for the UN and other relief operations.

Best regards
Thomas
 
Noray
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Mon Sep 06, 2021 7:29 pm

tommy1808 wrote:
finnishway wrote:
Just out of curiosity asking that would it be possible (at least in theory) for commercial cargo airline to operate A400M?

To my knowledge A400M has civil certification so does it mean that any airline could buy that aircraft? It may not make sense financially, but just thinking that there could be small market for this kind of special commercial operations.


Yes, Airbus suggested that a couple of years back for Charter operators flying for the UN and other relief operations.

Best regards
Thomas

Interesting question, and I'm not sure about the correct answer. The civilian A400M type certificate issued by EASA contains the following points on page 13:

19. Maximum Seating Capacity

No other occupants apart of the minimum flight crew are allowed on board

20. Baggage/ Cargo Compartment

No loads shall be carried in the cargo compartment


Therefore, operating the A400M with cargo or passengers requires an additional certification, which is, in case of military use, issued by the operators' national military aviation authorities. IIRC the main issue here are load restraints that must withstand higher g-forces under civilian than under military regulations. And then, carrying 230 or 260 pax without seats in the cargo bay during the Afghanistan evacuation was only possible thanks to special permissions from the military leaders.
 
Noray
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Mon Sep 06, 2021 8:00 pm

Noray wrote:
Some more facts about the Afghanistan evacuations:

From August 17th to August 26th, German A400Ms evacuated 5347 people in 35 flights out of Kabul, an average of 152,8 per flight. (German)

Spanish A400Ms evacuated 2206 people in 17 flights between Kabul and Dubai. (Spanish)

The record number of pax in a single A400M was reported by the French: 266, according to another source 270 people including 125 children.

According to Janes journalist Gareth Jennings/Jean-Brice Dumont, Head of Airbus Military Aircraft:

Notes recent experience of A400M in #Kabul airlift. 25 aircraft used by all but one customer (presumably Malaysia). Along with 9 MRTTs, 120 evacuation flights flown with only one technical event (burst tyres due to emergency braking to avoid civilians on runway).

https://twitter.com/GarethJennings3/sta ... 1484413952
 
finnishway
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Tue Sep 07, 2021 11:26 am

Noray wrote:
tommy1808 wrote:
finnishway wrote:
Just out of curiosity asking that would it be possible (at least in theory) for commercial cargo airline to operate A400M?

To my knowledge A400M has civil certification so does it mean that any airline could buy that aircraft? It may not make sense financially, but just thinking that there could be small market for this kind of special commercial operations.


Yes, Airbus suggested that a couple of years back for Charter operators flying for the UN and other relief operations.

Best regards
Thomas

Interesting question, and I'm not sure about the correct answer. The civilian A400M type certificate issued by EASA contains the following points on page 13:

19. Maximum Seating Capacity

No other occupants apart of the minimum flight crew are allowed on board

20. Baggage/ Cargo Compartment

No loads shall be carried in the cargo compartment


Therefore, operating the A400M with cargo or passengers requires an additional certification, which is, in case of military use, issued by the operators' national military aviation authorities. IIRC the main issue here are load restraints that must withstand higher g-forces under civilian than under military regulations. And then, carrying 230 or 260 pax without seats in the cargo bay during the Afghanistan evacuation was only possible thanks to special permissions from the military leaders.


Sounds weird. You can buy and fly A400M, but you can't carry any cargo in it. I understand that passenger requirements are expensive and hard to achieve, but seems odd that A400M can't really be used for humanitarian cargo charters for example. Just like Safair is using their L-100 aircraft. As far as I know LM-100J was also certified for cargo only.
 
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bikerthai
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Tue Sep 07, 2021 12:26 pm

Must be just international regulations. Similar to how the 747 Dreamlifter is allowed to carry medical supplies in the lower lobe only by special permission.

bt
 
Noray
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Tue Sep 07, 2021 1:30 pm

finnishway wrote:
Noray wrote:
tommy1808 wrote:

Yes, Airbus suggested that a couple of years back for Charter operators flying for the UN and other relief operations.

Best regards
Thomas

Interesting question, and I'm not sure about the correct answer. The civilian A400M type certificate issued by EASA contains the following points on page 13:

19. Maximum Seating Capacity

No other occupants apart of the minimum flight crew are allowed on board

20. Baggage/ Cargo Compartment

No loads shall be carried in the cargo compartment


Therefore, operating the A400M with cargo or passengers requires an additional certification, which is, in case of military use, issued by the operators' national military aviation authorities. IIRC the main issue here are load restraints that must withstand higher g-forces under civilian than under military regulations. And then, carrying 230 or 260 pax without seats in the cargo bay during the Afghanistan evacuation was only possible thanks to special permissions from the military leaders.


Sounds weird. You can buy and fly A400M, but you can't carry any cargo in it. I understand that passenger requirements are expensive and hard to achieve, but seems odd that A400M can't really be used for humanitarian cargo charters for example. Just like Safair is using their L-100 aircraft. As far as I know LM-100J was also certified for cargo only.

You can buy and fly A400M, but to carry any cargo in it, you need approval from another authority. That's what I understand, but I may be wrong.

The LM-100J required another certification as well, it's not the same as the C-130J. Maybe some C-130 experts know more about this. I didn't find a C-130J type certificate. Maybe grandfathering plays a role? See Boeing 737, and the FAA was in charge here, while the A400M was a new type certified by EASA. The LM-100J has predecessors that were certified under less strict regulations, and a lot of experience has been gained there that can be used to create new rules? Note that the LM-100J TCDS doesn't allow passengers and includes an approved loading schedule specified in a different document. Also, the LM-100J type certificate was issued more than 20 years after the C-130j entered service. Certification process probably was a lot of work and required lots of time, which Airbus didn't have in case of the A400M, that gets an additional military certification anyway.
 
tommy1808
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Wed Sep 08, 2021 4:40 am

Noray wrote:
finnishway wrote:
Noray wrote:
Interesting question, and I'm not sure about the correct answer. The civilian A400M type certificate issued by EASA contains the following points on page 13:



Therefore, operating the A400M with cargo or passengers requires an additional certification, which is, in case of military use, issued by the operators' national military aviation authorities. IIRC the main issue here are load restraints that must withstand higher g-forces under civilian than under military regulations. And then, carrying 230 or 260 pax without seats in the cargo bay during the Afghanistan evacuation was only possible thanks to special permissions from the military leaders.


Sounds weird. You can buy and fly A400M, but you can't carry any cargo in it. I understand that passenger requirements are expensive and hard to achieve, but seems odd that A400M can't really be used for humanitarian cargo charters for example. Just like Safair is using their L-100 aircraft. As far as I know LM-100J was also certified for cargo only.

You can buy and fly A400M, but to carry any cargo in it, you need approval from another authority. .


isn´t Cargo handling equipment always a certification item on its own since customers usually have choices what they want to install, powered or not, different suppliers and what not?

best regards
Thomas
 
Noray
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Sat Sep 18, 2021 1:01 pm

Currently, the Swedish Air Force is hosting a campaign together with the German Air Force to certify the Gripen C/D for in flight refuelling from the A400M. A German Luftwaffe A400M and Swedish Gripens are involved.

https://twitter.com/Saab/status/1439154676914696198
https://twitter.com/Team_Luftwaffe/stat ... 8463011845
https://www.fmv.se/aktuellt--press/aktu ... jas-39-cd/

This should be of particular interest for the Multinational Air Transport Unit that Germany is creating with ten of its 53 A400Ms in Lechfeld, Bavaria. Hungary, the first international participant that has signed, is a Gripen user just as the Czech Republic that has been named as a possible partner in the past.
 
estorilm
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Mon Sep 20, 2021 6:31 pm

finnishway wrote:
Just out of curiosity asking that would it be possible (at least in theory) for commercial cargo airline to operate A400M?

To my knowledge A400M has civil certification so does it mean that any airline could buy that aircraft? It may not make sense financially, but just thinking that there could be small market for this kind of special commercial operations.

In addition to the registration issues (though these may be normal add-ons for types which plan to fly commercial cargo) - the plane wasn't really designed for this in my opinion.

Just about everything that makes the A400M such a capable and appealing aircraft is its performance envelope within a tactical military / "peace-keeping" role. The key is "tactical" though.

You've got a design optimized around a huge array of redundancy, sensors, "excessive" performance/power, she's got cameras everywhere, HUDs, designed around a complete refueling system, etc.

A cargo carrier requires exactly NONE of that ^^^ ...but would still have to pay for a lot of it (in the initial R&D / cost of the aircraft itself) even if it's all stripped out.

I think it could do it, and do it well - but it would also be immensely expensive and rather pointless. As cool as it might be, do you need a fully-loaded commercial cargo plane to stop in 2500'? No way. :lol: Lots of old jet cargo conversions could probably do it better. Heck you could probably get TWO lightly-used A300-600F's (with a good negotiator, and if you could find them lol) for the price of a new A400M. They'd carry more, be faster, cheaper to operate, and use less fuel. The only advantage of an A400M cargo would be short-field stuff, and the cargo market isn't even remotely large enough to justify the price difference.
 
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keesje
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Fri Oct 08, 2021 4:59 pm

RAF low level exercising..

https://fb.watch/8wcsZa1qHf/
 
texl1649
Posts: 1986
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Fri Oct 08, 2021 9:52 pm

estorilm wrote:
finnishway wrote:
Just out of curiosity asking that would it be possible (at least in theory) for commercial cargo airline to operate A400M?

To my knowledge A400M has civil certification so does it mean that any airline could buy that aircraft? It may not make sense financially, but just thinking that there could be small market for this kind of special commercial operations.

In addition to the registration issues (though these may be normal add-ons for types which plan to fly commercial cargo) - the plane wasn't really designed for this in my opinion.

Just about everything that makes the A400M such a capable and appealing aircraft is its performance envelope within a tactical military / "peace-keeping" role. The key is "tactical" though.

You've got a design optimized around a huge array of redundancy, sensors, "excessive" performance/power, she's got cameras everywhere, HUDs, designed around a complete refueling system, etc.

A cargo carrier requires exactly NONE of that ^^^ ...but would still have to pay for a lot of it (in the initial R&D / cost of the aircraft itself) even if it's all stripped out.

I think it could do it, and do it well - but it would also be immensely expensive and rather pointless. As cool as it might be, do you need a fully-loaded commercial cargo plane to stop in 2500'? No way. :lol: Lots of old jet cargo conversions could probably do it better. Heck you could probably get TWO lightly-used A300-600F's (with a good negotiator, and if you could find them lol) for the price of a new A400M. They'd carry more, be faster, cheaper to operate, and use less fuel. The only advantage of an A400M cargo would be short-field stuff, and the cargo market isn't even remotely large enough to justify the price difference.


Same problems Lockheed has had with the C-130 for decades. Basically, it drinks way too much, and costs a lot of maintenance vs. other options on the civil market. The laughable comparison is when McD/Boeing tried to actually pitch the C-17 as a civil freighter (which at least used then-current commercial engines). The answer in the market was a resounding “no thanks.”

A much more under-powered (re-engined) and stripped down A400”C” might have a shot, imho, if a lot of weight/cost were stripped out of it, but clearly Airbus has never thought it makes sense to pitch.
 
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Grizzly410
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Thu Nov 18, 2021 1:48 pm

It's again small but an order is an order, good news for the program as Indonesia eventually purchase 2 A400M and sign LOI for 4 more.
https://www.airbus.com/en/newsroom/press-releases/2021-11-indonesia-ministry-of-defence-orders-two-airbus-a400ms

The order was expected for a long time now, rumor was putting it at 5 aircraft, so nothing really surprising here. However this bit from the Indonesian Minister of Defence calls my attention :
“The A400M is a truly multi-role platform and will greatly enhance the Indonesian Air Force’s tactical air-to-air capabilities. This aircraft will play a key role in other key missions including paratrooping and heavy cargo transportation. We are also looking at additional A400M acquisition in the near term, with future A400M developments such as firefighting an important capability we are exploring jointly with Airbus. The A400M will become a national asset and the cornerstone for Human Assistance and Disaster Response missions, beyond its tactical and air-to-air capabilities,”


So far the program A400M was late to deliver agreed and planned capabilities, but the latest deliveries are nearly full capabilities (see here) so the time to develop new stuff is coming, and Prabowo Subianto offers us the first exemple of new capability : Firefighting.
Just like all A/C modified for this role it can't be as efificient as an aircraft specificaly designed for the task but thinking about it the A400M can compensate thanks to its modern tech, in particular the HUD in low level flying that could enable water droping at night. Current operators would certainly be happy to have extra capacity to support their FF fleet during fire season for "cheap".

Do you guys have an idea what others useful capability A400M could bring to increase even more its versatility ?
 
mxaxai
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Thu Nov 18, 2021 3:43 pm

Nice. How long has this order been in the works now?

I think the no. 1 capability that would improve its versatility is reduced cost and increased reliability. More aircraft for the same budget are always helpful.
Other than that, increases to the MTOW and MZFW could be interesting but none of the current operators seem to have a desire for more capability.
 
estorilm
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Thu Nov 18, 2021 4:37 pm

Grizzly410 wrote:
It's again small but an order is an order, good news for the program as Indonesia eventually purchase 2 A400M and sign LOI for 4 more.
https://www.airbus.com/en/newsroom/press-releases/2021-11-indonesia-ministry-of-defence-orders-two-airbus-a400ms

The order was expected for a long time now, rumor was putting it at 5 aircraft, so nothing really surprising here. However this bit from the Indonesian Minister of Defence calls my attention :
“The A400M is a truly multi-role platform and will greatly enhance the Indonesian Air Force’s tactical air-to-air capabilities. This aircraft will play a key role in other key missions including paratrooping and heavy cargo transportation. We are also looking at additional A400M acquisition in the near term, with future A400M developments such as firefighting an important capability we are exploring jointly with Airbus. The A400M will become a national asset and the cornerstone for Human Assistance and Disaster Response missions, beyond its tactical and air-to-air capabilities,”


So far the program A400M was late to deliver agreed and planned capabilities, but the latest deliveries are nearly full capabilities (see here) so the time to develop new stuff is coming, and Prabowo Subianto offers us the first exemple of new capability : Firefighting.
Just like all A/C modified for this role it can't be as efificient as an aircraft specificaly designed for the task but thinking about it the A400M can compensate thanks to its modern tech, in particular the HUD in low level flying that could enable water droping at night. Current operators would certainly be happy to have extra capacity to support their FF fleet during fire season for "cheap".

Do you guys have an idea what others useful capability A400M could bring to increase even more its versatility ?

Gunship! :twisted: :twisted: :twisted:

Standoff / Cruise Missile Truck: I wonder if any of their customers have the weapons to do something like palatalized launching of a cruise missile like the C130 and C17 Rapid Dragon stuff we've been seeing. Doesn't look like any A400M operators have the JASSM.

Maratime / Sub Patrol?: Meh, Airbus would probably rather sell their A319MPA for this - which would likely be better suited AND far cheaper to operate and maintain. The only advantage I could imagine would be an A400M using its areal refueling tanks to extend its own range - it could likely loiter for a very long time in such a role. Then again the sensors required (especially the MAD) would be impossible to simply slap on.

Weather / research?: Probably too expensive and too much airplane for this role.

....which is really the issue. C130's do tons of stuff because they're cheap and there are tons available to retrofit. Even the countries which have the A400M operate C130s, and would likely rather use them than their shiny new A400M's.

As an ultra-modern tactical airlifter, the A400M probably does its intended job(s) so well that you'd never really want to (or need to) venture too far from those roles.

It's already incredibly versatile, I'm not sure what else they could really add to it.
 
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keesje
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Fri Nov 19, 2021 10:32 am

Grizzly410 wrote:
It's again small but an order is an order, good news for the program as Indonesia eventually purchase 2 A400M and sign LOI for 4 more.
https://www.airbus.com/en/newsroom/press-releases/2021-11-indonesia-ministry-of-defence-orders-two-airbus-a400ms

The order was expected for a long time now, rumor was putting it at 5 aircraft, so nothing really surprising here. However this bit from the Indonesian Minister of Defence calls my attention :
“The A400M is a truly multi-role platform and will greatly enhance the Indonesian Air Force’s tactical air-to-air capabilities. This aircraft will play a key role in other key missions including paratrooping and heavy cargo transportation. We are also looking at additional A400M acquisition in the near term, with future A400M developments such as firefighting an important capability we are exploring jointly with Airbus. The A400M will become a national asset and the cornerstone for Human Assistance and Disaster Response missions, beyond its tactical and air-to-air capabilities,”


So far the program A400M was late to deliver agreed and planned capabilities, but the latest deliveries are nearly full capabilities (see here) so the time to develop new stuff is coming, and Prabowo Subianto offers us the first exemple of new capability : Firefighting.
Just like all A/C modified for this role it can't be as efificient as an aircraft specificaly designed for the task but thinking about it the A400M can compensate thanks to its modern tech, in particular the HUD in low level flying that could enable water droping at night. Current operators would certainly be happy to have extra capacity to support their FF fleet during fire season for "cheap".

Do you guys have an idea what others useful capability A400M could bring to increase even more its versatility ?


I think a spacey fast & slow platform like the A400M will be used for diiferent roles in the next 40 years. UAV operations might be one. https://youtu.be/8BbyL28JnOQ But strategic / tactical transport and fast jet/ helicopter refuelling will remain the main ones. Long range tactical capability being the most important / unique one.

A400M checking out its flight enveloppe protection system 2 weeks ago: https://youtu.be/sxDfe61hELk
 
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Grizzly410
Posts: 552
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Fri Nov 19, 2021 10:41 pm

mxaxai wrote:
I think the no. 1 capability that would improve its versatility is reduced cost and increased reliability. More aircraft for the same budget are always helpful.
Other than that, increases to the MTOW and MZFW could be interesting but none of the current operators seem to have a desire for more capability.


Whilst not a capability in the sense I thought about that's true there's this kind of aspect. I think the fleet availability number must be the priority of current customers.
Anonymous insider of the German Luftwaffe recently post a picture on twitter of grounded A400M lining for whatever bit of maintenance. Like 12 aircrafts...
French MP Francois Cornut Gentille was notorious when reporting on french defense spending for his critics of the poor availability of such brand new aircrafts..
Just two examples, they are not alone unfortunately.

Btw I think it's something that could be massivaly improved with the right investment (can't elaborate on this sorry), but everyone is exhausted of paying now.

estorilm wrote:
Gunship!

I believe there is a C-295 gunship version, thing is : nobody ever bought it :indifferent:

keesje wrote:
I think a spacey fast & slow platform like the A400M will be used for diiferent roles in the next 40 years. UAV operations might be one. https://youtu.be/8BbyL28JnOQ But strategic / tactical transport and fast jet/ helicopter refuelling will remain the main ones. Long range tactical capability being the most important / unique one.

Nice stuff this UAV launch !! :shock:
:idea: Next step UAV in-flight recovery ?? I have no idea how useful it would be but I'd fancy that.
 
Noray
Posts: 241
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Sat Nov 20, 2021 10:23 pm

Grizzly410 wrote:
Anonymous insider of the German Luftwaffe recently post a picture on twitter of grounded A400M lining for whatever bit of maintenance. Like 12 aircrafts...

It was the official Twitter account of the Luftwaffe that posted an image of some tarmac in Wunstorf with not enough aircraft on it.. According to a report of Süddeutsche Zeitung, more than half of the German A400Ms are currently in maintenance at various Airbus facilities.


Another official military Twitter account, this time Armée française - Opérations militaires has a video about the evacuation of Tessalit, a military base with an unpaved airfield in the north of Mali that the French have now handed over to local forces. From 13th to 15th November, in twelve rotations, two French A400Ms flew 190 tonnes of cargo, including 18 vehicles, out of Tessalit.
 
AngMoh
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Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2011 5:03 am

Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Sun Nov 21, 2021 12:31 pm

Noray wrote:
Grizzly410 wrote:
Anonymous insider of the German Luftwaffe recently post a picture on twitter of grounded A400M lining for whatever bit of maintenance. Like 12 aircrafts...

It was the official Twitter account of the Luftwaffe that posted an image of some tarmac in Wunstorf with not enough aircraft on it.. According to a report of Süddeutsche Zeitung, more than half of the German A400Ms are currently in maintenance at various Airbus facilities.
[/url]


To have such a tweet from the German Luftwaffe is exceptionally unprofessional. The text is absurd and will only backfire. We are not talking about Michael O'Leary from Ryanair complaining about 737 deliveries or Akbar Al Baker complaining about A350 paint. This is a supposedly professional army telling everyone on twitter they are not capable to perform their mission. Putin will be happy with this tweet.

I get the impression that the German Airforce can not get any plane airworthy. Lufthansa has no problems flying A340-300 at high utilisation while the low utilisation Luftwaffe A340-300's always seem to break whenever they had to fly Angela Merkel to an G7 or G20 meeting.
 
mxaxai
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Joined: Sat Jun 18, 2016 7:29 am

Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Sun Nov 21, 2021 1:04 pm

AngMoh wrote:
I get the impression that the German Airforce can not get any plane airworthy. Lufthansa has no problems flying A340-300 at high utilisation while the low utilisation Luftwaffe A340-300's always seem to break whenever they had to fly Angela Merkel to an G7 or G20 meeting.

Ironically enough, those A340s are ex-Lufthansa aircraft and are maintained by LH Technik.

The German army is tightly controlled by the parliament, perhaps more so than in most other countries. With a new government coming into power in the next few weeks, public attention and pressure is likely to be more effective to gain additional funding than talks behind closed doors. The A400M is probably the most positively viewed piece of equipment they have since the events at Kabul. There are other topics (armed drones, nukes, ...) that are far more controversial.
Also, if they didn't publish it themselves, this information would be leaked to the media sooner or later anyway.
 
texl1649
Posts: 1986
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Sun Nov 21, 2021 1:47 pm

Noray wrote:
Grizzly410 wrote:
Anonymous insider of the German Luftwaffe recently post a picture on twitter of grounded A400M lining for whatever bit of maintenance. Like 12 aircrafts...

It was the official Twitter account of the Luftwaffe that posted an image of some tarmac in Wunstorf with not enough aircraft on it.. According to a report of Süddeutsche Zeitung, more than half of the German A400Ms are currently in maintenance at various Airbus facilities.


Another official military Twitter account, this time Armée française - Opérations militaires has a video about the evacuation of Tessalit, a military base with an unpaved airfield in the north of Mali that the French have now handed over to local forces. From 13th to 15th November, in twelve rotations, two French A400Ms flew 190 tonnes of cargo, including 18 vehicles, out of Tessalit.


This is why they stopped publishing their mission capable rates a couple years ago, it was publicly too embarrassing. It's not the military's fault, they habitually underfund MRO/spares/maintenance across the navy/army/Luftwaffe, and have for decades. I think they only stopped publishing the data around 2018 (there is a thread somewhere on this site about it), but the stories go back quite some time. Here is one;

https://nationalinterest.org/feature/ge ... ying-13748
 
Chaostheory
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Sun Nov 21, 2021 4:50 pm

From what I'm told by my father in law, the out of action aircraft are due to maintenance checks (?structural) becoming due over a very short time period. This seems to stem from the rush of deliveries which occurred 3 or so years ago.
 
FlapOperator
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Joined: Tue Jun 29, 2021 4:07 pm

Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Sun Nov 21, 2021 10:05 pm

AngMoh wrote:

To have such a tweet from the German Luftwaffe is exceptionally unprofessional. The text is absurd and will only backfire. We are not talking about Michael O'Leary from Ryanair complaining about 737 deliveries or Akbar Al Baker complaining about A350 paint. This is a supposedly professional army telling everyone on twitter they are not capable to perform their mission. Putin will be happy with this tweet.

I get the impression that the German Airforce can not get any plane airworthy. Lufthansa has no problems flying A340-300 at high utilisation while the low utilisation Luftwaffe A340-300's always seem to break whenever they had to fly Angela Merkel to an G7 or G20 meeting.


I am not German, but I can see the frustration of a Luftwaffe officer at the status of what should be the flagship European aviation project. Especially at a time when any non-Euro sourced aircraft procured by an EU state gets a very public "disappointment statement" from Paris.

It would be fascinating to see the readiness rates and timeliness and completeness of OEM support of the -130J vs. the A400M.

I doubt Putin is getting his intelligence from Twitter, but in any case sadly very little of the German military is a deterrent to Russian adventurism.

As far as high vs. low utilization, oddly enough for aircraft like a transport category jet, low utilization might be harder to manage than high. Many biz jet OEMs have specific low use maintenance programs precisely due to the challenges of sitting around. Personally, were it me in charge of the Luftwaffe A340, I'd have LH technical operations on speed dial, if not physically accomplishing the actual maintenance at levels above front line maintenance.
 
Noray
Posts: 241
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Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Sun Nov 21, 2021 10:50 pm

AngMoh wrote:
To have such a tweet from the German Luftwaffe is exceptionally unprofessional. The text is absurd and will only backfire. We are not talking about Michael O'Leary from Ryanair complaining about 737 deliveries or Akbar Al Baker complaining about A350 paint. This is a supposedly professional army telling everyone on twitter they are not capable to perform their mission. Putin will be happy with this tweet.

I get the impression that the German Airforce can not get any plane airworthy. Lufthansa has no problems flying A340-300 at high utilisation while the low utilisation Luftwaffe A340-300's always seem to break whenever they had to fly Angela Merkel to an G7 or G20 meeting.

I don't think that Putin has to rely on tweets when it comes to counting A400Ms in Wunstorf. Even I am able to track most of their flights on the internet.

mxaxai wrote:
The German army is tightly controlled by the parliament, perhaps more so than in most other countries. With a new government coming into power in the next few weeks, public attention and pressure is likely to be more effective to gain additional funding than talks behind closed doors.

Also, the current defence minister AKK will lose her job anyway as soon as the new coalition forms a government. Nothing to lose in this respect through some unorthodox methods.

texl1649 wrote:
This is why they stopped publishing their mission capable rates a couple years ago, it was publicly too embarrassing. It's not the military's fault, they habitually underfund MRO/spares/maintenance across the navy/army/Luftwaffe, and have for decades. I think they only stopped publishing the data around 2018 (there is a thread somewhere on this site about it), but the stories go back quite some time. Here is one;

https://nationalinterest.org/feature/ge ... ying-13748


Moot point. Not again.
These public reports had only been introduced a few years earlier by the then new defence minister von der Leyen with the purpose of getting public attention for the poor situation she had inherited from her predecessors. Then these reports were turned against her and against Germany (e.g. by conservative US publications like The National Interest and politicians like Donald Trump) which wasn't helpful at all, so von der Leyen stopped the publications she had started herself. Again, US conservatives are turning this against Germany, negating the existing will to improve.

Chaostheory wrote:
From what I'm told by my father in law, the out of action aircraft are due to maintenance checks (?structural) becoming due over a very short time period. This seems to stem from the rush of deliveries which occurred 3 or so years ago.

Calendar-based maintenance schemes could be part of the problem; in my understanding the Luftwaffe has asked for some more flexibility there.
 
Noray
Posts: 241
Joined: Tue Jan 30, 2018 4:28 am

Re: Airbus A400M News, Production and Delivery Thread - 2021

Mon Nov 22, 2021 7:18 am

A PR piece from Avio Aero, the manufacturer of the TP400 engine’s power gearbox (PGB). In their view, the history is all rosy (almost), and the small inconveniences are being fixed.

Evolution of Power

A few points:

The largest power gearbox ever built in the West is benefiting from a series of design upgrades to further increase torque resistance by 5%, eliminate vibration phenomenon, improve the casing’s resistance to contamination and corrosion possibilities, as well as to extend service life

Today, all Avio Aero’s newly produced PGBs incorporate these improvements and Avio Aero’s Service Team is working to upgrade the in-service fleet, with 45% already upgraded and completion scheduled for 2023.

the Armed Forces will be able to use their aircraft more flexibly than originally intended and increase engine ‘time on wing’.

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