Tag Archives: Airbus Defence and Space

Orion programme

Mid-January 2017 Airbus Defence and Space delivered to NASA a propulsion test module for the Orion programme. The Propulsion Qualification Test Model (PQM) will be used to check that the Orion European Service Module (ESM) spacecraft’s propulsion subsystem functions correctly.

Airbus Defence and Space delivers propulsion test module for the Orion programme to NASA
Airbus Defence and Space delivers propulsion test module for the Orion programme to NASA

On behalf of the European Space Agency, Airbus Defence and Space is prime contractor for the ESM, a key element of NASA’s next generation Orion spacecraft.

Although the PQM will never see space, this is an important step in the development of the Orion programme. Complex systems for human spaceflight must first be tested and qualified on Earth before being used as flight hardware in space. The engineers want to determine how the system behaves in different environments, to ensure that it functions properly.

The test module is travelling via Bremerhaven and Houston/USA to its final destination at NASA’s White Sands Test Facility (WSTF) near Las Cruces in New Mexico/USA. Arrival is expected mid-February. The tests will take place later in the year at WSTF for the qualification of Orion ESM’s propulsion subsystem.

First Tactical Airlifter

Airbus Defence and Space has delivered to the German Air Force its first A400M transport aircraft qualified for tactical operations and able to fly in areas subject to military threats.

Germany Receives First Tactical Standard Airbus A400M Airlifter
Germany Receives First Tactical Standard Airbus A400M Airlifter

The aircraft is the sixth A400M in German service and the first with the new capabilities in addition to the world-leading performance of all A400Ms as strategic transports. All aircraft will be retrofitted to the new standard and receive subsequent enhancements as those are certified.

Key aspects of the aircraft’s latest capabilities are improvements in its self-defence systems, ability to air-drop cargo loads, and paratrooping. Additionally, it can operate on unprepared runways, fly as low as 150 feet/45.7 m above the ground, refuel other aircraft as a tanker, and safely take-off and land in extremely high temperatures.

Airbus Defence and Space A400M Programme Manager, Kurt Rossner, said: «The A400M programme has made enormous progress this year in implementing these critical capabilities on the aircraft. In addition to having twice the payload-range of the legacy transports like the C-160 and C-130 that it is replacing, it can now also operate from any runway that those older aircraft could use. There is no other aircraft in the market with the A400M´s combination of tactical and strategic capabilities and it is going to transform Germany’s air mobility force».

The new aircraft is fitted with a Defensive Aids Sub-System (DASS) incorporating a Missile Warning System, Radar Warning Receiver, and an Expendables Dispensing System to eject flares and radar-confusing chaff. The DASS for all A400Ms is integrated by Airbus Defence and Space at Ulm.

Military and humanitarian loads of up to 8 tonnes/17,637 lbs each, including for example 24 × 1 tonne/2,205 lbs pallets, are fully certified for air-dropping from the aircraft’s ramp and further loads are being continually qualified in flight test.

Paratroops can be dropped from the ramp or side paratroop doors in sticks of up to 20, and sticks of 30 have already been successfully demonstrated with certification to follow. Flight testing continues to build the numbers next to 40 and then 58 in a single pass.

The A400M is certified to operate from grass runways and has successfully completed testing of operations from gravel and sandy soil with certification in process. Low-level flight in mountainous terrain is cleared down to 150 feet/45.7 m above ground by day and 300 feet/91.4 m by night under the pilot’s manual control. Development of automatic low-level flight is well advanced.

The aircraft is certified to receive fuel in-flight from a tanker, and as a tactical tanker itself to refuel fighters and other large aircraft by day, with night operations demonstrated and close to certification.

In this latest configuration the A400M is certified to operate in temperatures up to 55°C at sea level, ensuring excellent «hot and high» performance at operationally challenging airfields around the world. And it is approved to take-off and fly on only three of its four powerful engines in the event of a mechanical problem or battle damage, adding to its outstanding level of operating autonomy.

 

Specifications

DIMENSIONS
Overall Length 45.10 m/148 feet
Overall Height 14.70 m/48 feet
Wing Span 42.40 m/139 feet
Cargo Hold Length (ramp excluded) 17.71 m/58 feet
Cargo Hold Height 3.85-4.00 m/12 feet 7 inch-13 feet
Cargo Hold Width 4.00 m/13 feet
Cargo Hold Volume 340 m3/12,000 feet3
WEIGHTS
Maximum Take Off Weight 141,000 kg/310,850 lbs
Maximum Landing Weight 123,000 kg/271,200 lbs
Internal Fuel Weight 50,500 kg/111,300 lbs
Maximum Payload 37,000 kg/81,600 lbs
ENGINE (×4)
EuroProp International TP400-D6 11,000 shp/8,200 kW
PERFORMANCE
Maximum Operating Altitude 12,200 m/40,000 feet
Maximum Cruise Speed (TAS) 300 knots/345 mph/555 km/h
Cruise Speed Range 0.68-0.72 M
RANGE
Range with Maximum Payload (37,000 kg/81,600 lbs) 1,780 NM/2,050 miles/3,300 km
Range with 30,000 kg/66,000 lbs Payload 2,450 NM/2,796 miles/4,500 km
Range with 20,000 kg/44,000 lbs Payload 3,450 NM/3,977 miles/6,400 km
Maximum Range (Ferry) 4,700 NM/5,406 miles/8,700 km

 

Maiden Flight

The first Airbus A400M new generation airlifter ordered by the Spanish Air Force has made its maiden flight, marking a key milestone towards its delivery. The aircraft, known as MSN44, took off from Seville, Spain where the A400M Final Assembly Line is located at 15:25 local time (GMT+1) on 5 September and landed back on site 3 hours and 45 minutes later.

The first Airbus A400M for the Spanish air force made its maiden flight on September 5 as scheduled. Airbus is committed to delivering it in September (Airbus photo)
The first Airbus A400M for the Spanish air force made its maiden flight on September 5 as scheduled. Airbus is committed to delivering it in September (Airbus photo)

Test-Pilot Nacho Lombo, who captained the flight, said after landing: «As always, the aircraft was a pleasure to fly. I am confident that its unique combination of strategic and tactical capabilities will have a transformational effect on the Spanish Air Force’s air mobility operations as it has done in other countries already». The aircraft is scheduled to be delivered in the coming weeks. Photos show MSN44 taking off and during its maiden flight.

 

Specifications

DIMENSIONS
Overall Length 45.10 m/148 feet
Overall Height 14.70 m/48 feet
Wing Span 42.40 m/139 feet
Cargo Hold Length (ramp excluded) 17.71 m/58 feet
Cargo Hold Height 3.85-4.00 m/12 feet 7 inch-13 feet
Cargo Hold Width 4.00 m/13 feet
Cargo Hold Volume 340 m3/12,000 feet3
WEIGHTS
Maximum Take Off Weight 141,000 kg/310,850 lbs
Maximum Landing Weight 123,000 kg/271,200 lbs
Internal Fuel Weight 50,500 kg/111,300 lbs
Maximum Payload 37,000 kg/81,600 lbs
ENGINE (×4)
EuroProp International TP400-D6 11,000 shp/8,200 kW
PERFORMANCE
Maximum Operating Altitude 12,200 m/40,000 feet
Maximum Cruise Speed (TAS) 300 knots/345 mph/555 km/h
Cruise Speed Range 0.68-0.72 M
RANGE
Range with Maximum Payload (37,000 kg/81,600 lbs) 1,780 NM/2,050 miles/3,300 km
Range with 30,000 kg/66,000 lbs Payload 2,450 NM/2,796 miles/4,500 km
Range with 20,000 kg/44,000 lbs Payload 3,450 NM/3,977 miles/6,400 km
Maximum Range (Ferry) 4,700 NM/5,406 miles/8,700 km
First Spanish Air Force A400M makes its maiden flight
First Spanish Air Force A400M makes its maiden flight

C295W for Canada

On January 12, 2015, following the submission of their proposal for Canada’s Fixed Wing Search And Rescue (FWSAR) replacement program; Airbus Defence and Space and Provincial Aerospace formally announced the establishment of AirPro SAR Services (AirPro).

Airbus has teamed with Provincial Aerospace under the AirPro banner to jointly offer the C295W turboprop transport for Canada’s long-delayed Fixed-Wing Search And Rescue competition (Airbus photo)
Airbus has teamed with Provincial Aerospace under the AirPro banner to jointly offer the C295W turboprop transport for Canada’s long-delayed Fixed-Wing Search And Rescue competition (Airbus photo)

AirPro is a joint venture that, upon contract award, will be the Canadian In-Service Support (ISS) integrator of the FWSAR C295W fleet for the life of its service in Canada. As the FWSAR ISS integrator, AirPro is a critical component of the companies’ proven, reliable, and low-risk solution. Airbus Defence and Space offers Canada a single point of accountability for the life of the program, combining the deep experience of both partners through AirPro.

«AirPro brings together Provincial Aerospace and Airbus Defence and Space as the Canadian ISS integrator in our proposal for the FWSAR program», said Antonio Rodriguez-Barberan, Senior Vice-President Commercial, Special Projects for Airbus Defence and Space. «Both companies successfully deliver ISS services around the world and we are excited to combine our experience and expertise to bid an optimal solution for Canada. The C295W ISS model is used by more than 20 operators around the world and has a proven track record of maximizing mission success. If the Airbus Defence and Space offer is selected, AirPro will utilize this trusted ISS model and combine it with deep domestic experience to ensure the best and most cost effective solution for Canada throughout the entirety of this program. AirPro brings together two world-class companies for the benefit of Canadian industry».

«AirPro is a joint venture that reflects the Airbus Defence and Space commitment to Canadian Industry», said Provincial Aerospace CEO Brian Chafe. The skills and technology required to service Canadian C295W aircraft will reside in Canada with Canadians who will complete the work required over the lifetime of the FWSAR program. Provincial Aerospace brings significant ISS experience to AirPro and is providing ISS services to similar missionized military and paramilitary aircraft domestically and internationally.

These aircraft have collectively accumulated over 250,000 hours of flying time in challenging operational environments such as Canada’s Maritime and Arctic environments. «The domestic and global ISS experience that we bring to AirPro will ensure that Canada is able to maximize DND’s mission success, ensuring reliable aircraft are ready to help Canadians in need», added Jake Trainor, Chief Operating Officer for Provincial Aerospace.

The C295 is the market leader in its class with more than 165 units sold worldwide to over 20 operators. It serves a broad range of critical and challenging requirements including search and rescue, maritime patrol, and troop transport. In addition to Airbus Defence and Space and Provincial Aerospace, the C295W team includes a number of other leading and export oriented Canadian companies, such as Pratt and Whitney Canada, CAE, and L3 Wescam. The C295W program is immersed in Canadian technology, products, and services.

«The C295W is the best plane for Canada’s needs and is exceeding expectations with air forces around the world», concluded Barberan. «We are excited to have submitted our bid for Canada’s new fleet of Search and Rescue aircraft. AirPro offers Canada and Canadian industry a unique opportunity to capitalize upon the global experience of Airbus Defence and Space and Provincial Aerospace».

 

Specifications

Dimensions
Overall Length 24.50 m/80 feet 3 inch
Overall Height 8.65 m/28 feet 5 inch
Wing Span 25.81 m/84 feet 8 inch
Cargo Hold Length (ramp excluded) 12.70 m/41 feet 8 inch
Cargo Hold Height 1.90 m/6 feet 3 inch
Cargo Hold Width 2.70 m/8 feet 10 inch
Cargo Hold Volume 64 m3/2,260 feet3
Weights
Maximum Take Off Weight 23,200 kg/51,000 lbs
Maximum Landing Weight 23,200 kg/51,000 lbs
Internal Fuel Weight 6,150 kg/13,600 lbs
Maximum Payload 9,250 kg/20,400 lbs
Engine (×2)
Pratt & Whitney PW-127G 2,645 shp (up to 2,920 shp with Auxiliary Power Reserve, APR)/1,970 kW
Performance
Maximum Operating Altitude 9,100 m/30,000 feet
Maximum Cruise Speed (TAS*) 260 knots/299 mph/480 km/h
Range
Range with Maximum Payload (9,250 kg/20,400 lbs) 700 NM/1,300 km
Range with 6,000 kg/13,200 lbs Payload 2,000 NM/3,700 km
Range with 3,000 kg/6,600 lbs Payload 2,500 NM/4,600 km
Maximum Range (Ferry) 2,900 NM/5,400 km

* The true airspeed (TAS; also KTAS, for Knots True AirSpeed) of an aircraft is the speed of the aircraft relative to the airmass in which it is flying

C295W in La Paz

An Airbus C295W aircraft belonging to the Mexican Navy (SEMAR) and operated by a mixed crew from Airbus Defence and Space and SEMAR has carried out demonstration flights in El Alto, La Paz, Bolivia, one of the airports with the most extreme hot and high conditions in the world.

The Airbus Military C295W is a new generation, very robust and reliable, highly versatile tactical airlifter
The Airbus Military C295W is a new generation, very robust and reliable, highly versatile tactical airlifter

The C295W, which landed at El Alto International Airport, more than 13,123 feet/4,000 m above sea level, on Tuesday, November 17, has also performed flights to the Cochabamba base and the unprepared runway of San Borja.

The new C295W version is equipped with winglets, which allow transport of more payload over larger distances in hot and high conditions and result in fuel savings of around 4%.

«The highly successful demonstration by the C295W in Bolivia this week underlines again its excellent performance in hot and high conditions, which is key for several countries in the Region. It demonstrates once more the C295W’s status as the most efficient aircraft in its category», said Christophe Roux, Head of Airbus Defence and Space in Latin America.

The aircraft’s tour of the region will include stops in several countries of the Region before returning to Mexico in early December.

The C295’s Short Take-Off & Landing (STOL) capability combined with a strong landing gear enable it to operate in the most austere locations with the worst conditions for take-off and landings
The C295’s Short Take-Off & Landing (STOL) capability combined with a strong landing gear enable it to operate in the most austere locations with the worst conditions for take-off and landings

 

Specifications

Dimensions
Overall Length 24.50 m/80 feet 3 inch
Overall Height 8.65 m/28 feet 5 inch
Wing Span 25.81 m/84 feet 8 inch
Cargo Hold Length (ramp excluded) 12.70 m/41 feet 8 inch
Cargo Hold Height 1.90 m/6 feet 3 inch
Cargo Hold Width 2.70 m/8 feet 10 inch
Cargo Hold Volume 64 m3/2,260 feet3
Weights
Maximum Take Off Weight 23,200 kg/51,000 lbs
Maximum Landing Weight 23,200 kg/51,000 lbs
Internal Fuel Weight 6,150 kg/13,600 lbs
Maximum Payload 9,250 kg/20,400 lbs
Engine (×2)
Pratt & Whitney PW-127G 2,645 shp (up to 2,920 shp with Auxiliary Power Reserve, APR)/1,970 kW
Performance
Maximum Operating Altitude 9,100 m/30,000 feet
Maximum Cruise Speed (TAS*) 260 knots/299 mph/480 km/h
Range
Range with Maximum Payload (9,250 kg/20,400 lbs) 700 NM/1,300 km
Range with 6,000 kg/13,200 lbs Payload 2,000 NM/3,700 km
Range with 3,000 kg/6,600 lbs Payload 2,500 NM/4,600 km
Maximum Range (Ferry) 2,900 NM/5,400 km

* The true airspeed (TAS; also KTAS, for Knots True AirSpeed) of an aircraft is the speed of the aircraft relative to the airmass in which it is flying

The C295W is based on the earlier CN235, but with many component upgrades
The C295W is based on the earlier CN235, but with many component upgrades

Grass runway tests

Airbus Defence and Space has successfully completed certification testing of the A400M new generation airlifter on a grass runway. The tests using the development aircraft MSN2 took place over a three-week period at the airfield of Écury-sur-Coole in France in September and examined the aircraft’s behaviour on grass and natural soil runways. The A400M demonstrated excellent performance both in taxying manoeuvres, such as U-turns, and during take-off and landing on the 1,500 m strip. These tests followed earlier successful results on the gravel surface at Ablitas in Spain and will be followed by tests on sand surfaces next year.

A400M completes grass runway certification tests
A400M completes grass runway certification tests

 

Specifications

DIMENSIONS
Overall Length 45.10 m/148 feet
Overall Height 14.70 m/48 feet
Wing Span 42.40 m/139 feet
Cargo Hold Length (ramp excluded) 17.71 m/58 feet
Cargo Hold Height 3.85-4.00 m/12 feet 7 inch-13 feet
Cargo Hold Width 4.00 m/13 feet
Cargo Hold Volume 340 m3/12,000 feet3
WEIGHTS
Maximum Take Off Weight 141,000 kg/310,850 lbs
Maximum Landing Weight 123,000 kg/271,200 lbs
Internal Fuel Weight 50,500 kg/111,300 lbs
Maximum Payload 37,000 kg/81,600 lbs
ENGINE (×4)
EuroProp International TP400-D6 11,000 shp/8,200 kW
PERFORMANCE
Maximum Operating Altitude 12,200 m/40,000 feet
Maximum Cruise Speed (TAS) 300 knots/345 mph/555 km/h
Cruise Speed Range 0.68-0.72 M
RANGE
Range with Maximum Payload (37,000 kg/81,600 lbs) 1,780 NM/2,050 miles/3,300 km
Range with 30,000 kg/66,000 lbs Payload 2,450 NM/2,796 miles/4,500 km
Range with 20,000 kg/44,000 lbs Payload 3,450 NM/3,977 miles/6,400 km
Maximum Range (Ferry) 4,700 NM/5,406 miles/8,700 km

 

Airbus Defence and Space has successfully completed certification testing of the A400M new generation airlifter on a grass runway. Tests took place over a three-week period at the airfield of Écury-sur-Coole in France in September and examined the aircraft’s behaviour on grass and natural soil runways.

Versatile Transport

Mexico becomes launch customer for new Airbas C295W. Thanks to the winglets, the C295W tactical airlifter will be able to transport more payload to a longer distance with around a 4% fuel savings, even in hot and high conditions. The Mexican Navy has specified the winglets for two C295s, for which the order was already announced, and winglets will be standard for all new C295s ordered from now on.

The C295 is fitted with the Highly Integrated Avionics System (HIAS), an advanced integrated avionics system based on the Thales Topdeck Avionics suite
The C295 is fitted with the Highly Integrated Avionics System (HIAS), an advanced integrated avionics system based on the Thales Topdeck Avionics suite

«The advantage of the winglets in hot and high conditions means that the development of the C295W is a key step for our highly successful light and medium transport family. And it is a particular pleasure to deliver this first aircraft to Mexico, which already has the biggest Airbus Defence and Space transport fleet in Latin America», said Antonio Rodríguez Barberán, Head of Commercial for Airbus Defence and Space in Latin America.

«The C295 has served us well for many years. We had some concerns about operating a mixed fleet of aircraft with and without winglets, but when we studied the enhanced performance of this new version it was clear that it would bring very significant operating benefits for us that could not be ignored», said Rear Admiral from Mexican Navy, José María García Macedo.

The C295 is ideal for any kind of «civic»/humanitarian mission for the benefit of society
The C295 is ideal for any kind of «civic»/humanitarian mission for the benefit of society

 

Airbas C295

The Airbus Military C295 is a new generation, very robust and reliable, highly versatile tactical airlifter able to carry up to nine tonnes of payload or up to 71 personnel, at a maximum cruise speed of 260 knots/299 mph/480 km/h. Fitted with a retractable landing gear and a pressurised cabin, it can cruise at altitudes up to 25,000 feet/7,620 m, while retaining remarkable Short Take-Off & Landing (STOL) performance from unprepared short, soft and rough airstrips, as well as low level flight characteristics.

Being 12.7 m/41 feet 8 inch long, the C295 has the longest unobstructed cabin in its class. It can accommodate up to 71 seats, offering a much higher personnel carrying capability than its competitors in this segment. For the same reason, the C295 can carry much more palletised cargo (up to five 88 inch/2.23 m × 108 inch/2.74 m standard HCU-6E pallets) with direct off-loading through its rear ramp door.

Powered by two Pratt & Whitney Canada PW127G turboprop engines, the C295 provides an excellent manoeuvrability, outstanding hot and high performance, low fuel consumption and consequently a very long endurance of up to eleven hours in the air.

First delivered in 2001, the C295 is a developed version of the well-known CN235, offering greater capacity and range. Its simple systems design and robustness, its proven in service reliability, its excellent flying qualities and great versatility, as well as its remarkable transport capabilities make it the most efficient «workhorse» with the lowest fuel burn, as well as the best operating and maintenance costs in its category. A key to C295 unique patrol and surveillance capabilities is its Fully Integrated Tactical System (FITS) which integrates, controls and displays the mission sensors, enhancing the mission awareness and facilitating the decision making.

The civil and military certification of the C295 ensures compliance with the international airworthiness regulations and safety standards, including the stringent Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) 25 requirements.

The C295 glass cockpit with digital avionics includes four large active matrix liquid crystal displays (6’’ × 8’’), fully compatible with night vision goggles
The C295 glass cockpit with digital avionics includes four large active matrix liquid crystal displays (6’’ × 8’’), fully compatible with night vision goggles

 

Specifications

Dimensions
Overall Length 24.50 m/80 feet 3 inch
Overall Height 8.65 m/28 feet 5 inch
Wing Span 25.81 m/84 feet 8 inch
Cargo Hold Length (ramp excluded) 12.70 m/41 feet 8 inch
Cargo Hold Height 1.90 m/6 feet 3 inch
Cargo Hold Width 2.70 m/8 feet 10 inch
Cargo Hold Volume 64 m3/2,260 feet3
Weights
Maximum Take Off Weight 23,200 kg/51,000 lbs
Maximum Landing Weight 23,200 kg/51,000 lbs
Internal Fuel Weight 6,150 kg/13,600 lbs
Maximum Payload 9,250 kg/20,400 lbs
Engine (×2)
Pratt & Whitney PW-127G 2,645 shp (up to 2,920 shp with Auxiliary Power Reserve, APR) /1,970 kW
Performance
Maximum Operating Altitude 9,100 m/30,000 feet
Maximum Cruise Speed (TAS*) 260 knots/299 mph/480 km/h
Range
Range with Maximum Payload (9,250 kg/20,400 lbs) 700 NM/1,300 km
Range with 6,000 kg/13,200 lbs Payload 2,000 NM/3,700 km
Range with 3,000 kg/6,600 lbs Payload 2,500 NM/4,600 km
Maximum Range (Ferry) 2,900 NM/5,400 km

* The true airspeed (TAS; also KTAS, for Knots True AirSpeed) of an aircraft is the speed of the aircraft relative to the airmass in which it is flying

The left engine is fitted with a propeller brake: while on the ground the engine gas generator can function in Auxiliary Power Unit (APU) mode with the propeller stopped to deliver electrical power and bleed air for the aircraft systems
The left engine is fitted with a propeller brake: while on the ground the engine gas generator can function in Auxiliary Power Unit (APU) mode with the propeller stopped to deliver electrical power and bleed air for the aircraft systems