French AF A330 MRTT pro­gresses

Vayu Aerospace and Defence - - Aviation Defence & In India -

The first of nine A330 MRTT Multi Role Tanker Trans­ports or­dered by the French Di­rec­tion Générale de l’Arme­ment (DGA) for the French Ar­mée de l’Air made its maiden flight from Air­bus De­fence and Space’s Getafé, Spain fa­cil­ity. The air­craft, which will be known in French ser­vice as Phénix is the sec­ond new-stan­dard A330 MRTT to fly. The air­craft was con­verted at Getafé from a stan­dard A330 as­sem­bled in Toulouse. The Rolls-Royce Trent 700-pow­ered Phénix fleet will be equipped with a com­bi­na­tion of the Air­bus Aerial Re­fu­elling Boom Sys­tem and un­der­wing Cob­ham hose-and-drogue re­fu­el­ing pods. While op­er­at­ing as a tanker, the air­craft can carry freight, 272 pas­sen­gers or be con­fig­ured for med­i­cal evac­u­a­tion. De­liv­ery of the first air­craft to BA125 at Istres-Le Tubé is due in Oc­to­ber 2018, the sec­ond in 2019 with the re­main­der be­ing de­liv­ered at the rate of one or two a year. The type will re­place the Ar­mée de l’Air’s fleet of 11 C-135FRs and three KC-135RGs as well as the three A310-304s and two A340-212s of ET3/60.

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