The Royal Air Force (RAF) has already taken delivery of its latest A400M Atlas military transport aircraft with a fleet of 22 that it ordered from Airbus with Germany, France and Spain as program partners. The device arrived at the Bridge Norton base in Seville from England, where it is assembled like the rest of the units of this model. The device’s good performance in the RAF has led it to seek the acquisition of six more units, as revealed by Supreme Commander of the Air Force Mike Wigston three months earlier before the United Kingdom’s Defense Commission.
The RAF, in a statement to welcome the last unit of its A400M fleet, explained how “recent events in Sudan have once again illustrated the importance of strategic air mobility.” Note Description: “Operating from a hardened airfield, the Atlas helped to evacuate more than 2,200 people and bring them to safety.”
As explained by Air Vice Marshal Mark Flavin, the aircraft has a fly-by-wire flight control system. [por cables] and a fully digitized cockpit. It can carry a 37-ton payload up to 2,000 miles (over 3,220 km) to both established or remote civilian and military airfields. “Its exceptional short-field performance allows it to operate from under-prepared and semi-prepared runways, using night vision goggles.”
He explained in his note that development of the platform will continue with a retrofitting program for the aircraft to achieve an operational configuration with significant commonalities with aircraft from other A400M operators: France, Germany, Spain, Turkey, Benelux and Malaysia. RAF. In parallel, its strategic capability will continue to expand, including full range support to the UK’s air forces.
Since entering service with the RAF in 2014, the text continues, the ATLAS has repeatedly proven its value: “has excelled during relief operations in the Caribbean and has been used throughout the military response to transport patients, equipment and Contributed in kind. Vaccines”. In addition, it has “played a key role in the evacuation of authorized personnel from Afghanistan and Sudan, and supported UK defense operations around the world, including in the Middle East, the Falkland Islands and Mali.”
The A400M also “supports long-term operations in the Middle East and NATO air policing operations in the Baltics.” Finally, official sources state, “In the United Kingdom, ATLAS has a 24/7 national reserve commitment and supports the United Kingdom Border Force with maritime reconnaissance (MRR) in the English Channel, long-range search and rescue (SAR ) ) and surveillance. An ATLAS is also based in the Falkland Islands, where it provides maritime reconnaissance, search and rescue and medical evacuation services in the South Atlantic, and in Antarctica with the benefit of in-flight refueling, airdrops of supplies .
The A400M is considered an equipment capable of carrying out both tactical and strategic troop transport missions. It is an aircraft model with which British service has achieved higher availability rates in recent months than Boeing’s C-130J tactical transport aircraft, which the Airbus A400M is replacing.
Between March 2021 and last September, availability for the US planes, in particular, was below 60%, while the European planes, which are largely intended to replace the C-130J, saw rates between 65 and 70%. received, which is in accordance with the parliamentary response. 14 November.
As for the RAF’s third model of military transport aircraft, the C-17, also from Boeing, has achieved the best results: between 75 and 88% availability during the same period referenced.