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Airbus further test fire fighting A400M



Airbus Defence and Space has carried out a new flight test campaign of the A400M prototype fire extinguishing kit, dropping 20,000 litres of retardant and creating high concentration lines more than 400 metres long on the ground.

For two weeks, the A400M carried out a ground and flight test campaign over southwestern and central Spain, including six launches, three of which used red retardant and three of which used water.

“We have tested a new version of the kit, improving launch efficiency and reducing unloading time by more than 30% compared to last year, while combining rapid deployment and simple installation on the A400M aircraft,” said Jean-Brice Dumont, Head of Military Affairs and Air Systems at Airbus Defence and Space.

This roll-on/roll-off kit does not require any modification to the aircraft and is therefore interchangeable with any aircraft in the A400M fleet. The water or retardant is stored in a tank in the cargo hold of the aircraft and, using a mechanical lever, a door is opened to allow the liquid to exit the aircraft by gravity through a discharge tube. The current design of the prototype is capable of dropping 20,000 litres in a single discharge.

The tanks can be filled in less than 10 minutes using standard shore-based high-pressure pumps. The A400M is characterised by its ability to take off and land on short, unpaved runways, and at a wide range of air bases and airfields.

During the campaign, the 43rd Fire Squadron of the Spanish Air Force has participated as a technical advisor and ensuring that this capability in the A400M has operational value for any potential operator.

In July 2022, Airbus tested a removable firefighting demonstration kit on the A400M for the first time. The company concluded that the A400M firefighting kit offers additional capabilities not available on the market thanks to its high drop capacity, high manoeuvrability with the latest safety standards, day and night operation and the potential to convert any normal A400M of any fleet in a firefighting plane at very short notice.

The post Airbus further test fire fighting A400M appeared first on Spain Today – Breaking Spanish News, Sport, and Information.



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