The Airbus A400M new generation airlifter continues to achieve milestones towards full capability after the successful deployment of 50 paratroopers from a side door on a single pass. The photo shows a part of these tests performed recently at the Ger Azet drop zone in southern France.
Flight test campaign to deliver 58 paratroopers from one side door will continue towards final qualification with simultaneous dispatch in 2020 and full capability in 2021.
The A400M is the proven, certified and in-operations most advanced airlifter with 21st century state-of-the-art technologies. The A400M can airlift in its large cargo bay most of the critical armed forces equipment that no longer fits in previous generation tactical airlifters, such as a heavy helicopter, an infantry fighting vehicle or a humanitarian excavator.
Thanks to its combined strategic and tactical capabilities, the A400M has proven better range, speed, altitude, payload and tactical performance than previous-generation tactical airlifters, enabling the delivery of game-changing capabilities to the point of need, such as next to a natural disaster or a theatre of operations where strategic airlifters cannot operate. The A400M enables cost-effective and rapid response to crises. The aircraft has also demonstrated its worth in supporting humanitarian and disaster relief operations as well as VIP transport.
The A400M was launched in May 2003 to respond to the combined needs of seven European Nations regrouped within OCCAR (Belgium, France, Germany, Luxemburg, Spain, Turkey and the UK), with Malaysia joining in 2005. The A400M assembly takes place in Spain; the wings (largely designed with composite materials) are manufactured in the UK, while the fuselage is built in Germany.
The A400M made its first flight on 11 December 2009. The first production aircraft was delivered to the French Air Force in August 2013 and entered into service a year after. The A400M already has seen operational use with the French and Turkish Air Forces in Afghanistan, the Central African Republic, African Sahel Region, Mali and in the Middle East to support the air operations over Iraq and Syria.
Airbus is a global leader in aeronautics, space and related services. In 2018 it generated revenues of € 64 billion and employed a workforce of around 134,000. Airbus offers the most comprehensive range of passenger airliners.
Airbus is also a European leader providing tanker, combat, transport and mission aircraft, as well as one of the world’s leading space companies. In helicopters, Airbus provides the most efficient civil and military rotorcraft solutions worldwide.