1st Bel­u­gaXL Trans­porter

Vayu Aerospace and Defence - - Aviation & Defence | News -

The first struc­turally com­plete air­frame for the new Bel­u­gaXL has rolled out from the assem­bly hangar in Toulouse. Once op­er­a­tional, a fleet of these next-gen­er­a­tion air­lifters will be used to trans­port com­pleted sec­tions of Air­bus air­craft among the com­pany’s Euro­pean pro­duc­tion sites and to its fi­nal assem­bly lines in France, Ger­many and Spain. While the first struc­turally com­plete Bel­u­gaXL moves into its test­ing phase, the sec­ond A330 to be con­verted into a Bel­u­gaXL ar­rived on sched­ule in Toulouse to be­gin its in­te­gra­tion process.The Bel­u­gaXLpro­gramme was launched in Novem­ber 2014 to ad­dress Air­bus’ in­creas­ing trans­port re­quire­ments. At six me­tres longer, one me­tre wider and with a pay­load lift­ing ca­pac­ity six tonnes greater than the Bel­u­gaST trans­porter ver­sion it is re­plac­ing, the Bel­u­gaXL will be able to trans­port both wings of the A350 XWB jet­liner to­gether in­stead of the sin­gle wing cur­rently ac­com­mo­dated on the Bel­u­gaST. In all, five Bel­u­gaXLs are sched­uled to en­ter ser­vice for Air­bus’ air­lift re­quire­ments.

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