Airbus Defence and Space has been selected by Qatar to supply two A330 MRTT new generation air-to-air refueling aircraft for the Qatar Emiri Air Force.
Qatar´s choice of the A330 MRTT makes it the seventh nation to select the type following Australia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, the United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom which have ordered a total of 34 aircraft, and India which is in the final stages of contractual negotiations for six aircraft. A total of 17 aircraft are currently in service.
Derived from Airbus’ successful A330 widebody twin-engine commercial airliner, the A330 MRTT is the world’s most advanced air-to-air tanker and also offers strategic transport airlift capacity in addition to its refueling capabilities.
The A330 MRTT can directly support a fighter squadron's deployment by carrying its operational personnel and equipment while also performing refueling escort for the squadron's combat aircraft to an overseas base. This allows the fighter squadron to deploy as a unit, and then quickly ramp up to a combat-level sortie rate after arrival.
In addition, the A330 MRTT is perfectly suited to undertake additional missions for current and future military forces’ requirements. Its large cabin provides volume for additional mission equipment, and the onboard power system can accommodate add-on loads such as multifunction automated relay terminals (SMART).
The versatility of the A330 MRTT enables a wide variety of cargo to be transported - from standard commercial containers, through military, ISO and NATO pallets and containers, to military vehicles. As an option, the main deck can be configured for cargo transport with the installation of a large forward loading door to allow large items of equipment to be carried, or a total of 34 463-L military pallets.
The A330 MRTT also features a suite of advanced military avionics and mission systems integrated with the civil avionics, and can also be provided with a comprehensive survivability package including defensive aids, along with fuel tank inerting and cockpit armoring.To date, 17 A330 MRTTs are in service with four customers: The UAE, Saudi Arabia, Australia and the UK.