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A400M News Update

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posted on Dec, 15 2008 @ 01:34 AM
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I think the A400 is too big. At some point you get dimishining returns for the size of the aircraft. What is its tactical capability going to be? I've seen numbers for its short field ops but they aren't that impressive. Plus, how hard does the runway have to be to support this thing? Are dirt runways out? 3 hoses are great but they can't do all at the same time, I think the C130 has three hoses as well but is also limited to 2 at once? Truth is, if you need something this big you ought to go with off the shelf 747's (cheaper) or a type that size or if you need tactical ability you ought to go with C17's (more capable). Will look forward to seeing the Euro nations that buy this thing try to make it work for them for 10 years before they figure it out. Good luck Eads...




posted on Dec, 16 2008 @ 08:06 AM
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Well more news. www.flightglobal.com...


EADS has revealed plans to integrate its Military Transport Aircraft Division (MTAD) into Airbus.

Part of the previously announced 'Future EADS' programme, the restructuring is intended to simplify management of the A400M military transport programme, which has been delayed by problems with the full-authority digital engine control software for its Europrop International TP400-D6 turboprops...

It will also be in charge of all Airbus military derivatives, including tankers, and it will retain control of the EADS Casa CN-235 and C-295 light tactical-transport aircraft programmes.


I'm not sure how this will help much but if they can simplify the program and not complicate it more by doing this then it would have a adverse affect on the program I guess.



posted on Dec, 17 2008 @ 10:15 AM
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www.flightglobal.com...


Airbus has today carried out the first flight of the EuroProp International TP400 powerplant for the A400M military transport, a test lasting 1hr 15min.

A single example of the engine has been fitted to the left inboard position on a Lockheed C-130K test-bed aircraft.




about ****ing time - they had to do something to attempt to get this programme back vaguely near on track - i can see the A400M flying sooner rather than later now, and marshalls being cut out of the loop.



posted on Dec, 17 2008 @ 02:07 PM
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Why oh why dont NATO buy some Antonov AN-70's? Its almost off the shelf and its better then the C-130's due to the latter being getting ancient and having lesser capabillities.

I mean, if you want to strengthen ties with the likes off Ukraine, then a millitairy purchase off this type would make a gesture off coffidence...

Sure the A-400 is a good aircraft on paper, but the C-130's need to be replaced now. Not over 5 years or more...



posted on Dec, 17 2008 @ 08:41 PM
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Flight has pictures and more information about the test. They took the engine to 30-35% of full power. They're going to gradually work up to full power. The engine and airframe will undergo post flight testing including borescoping of the engine. Flights are planned to resume in the second half of January, with some instrument changes made to the plane.


Pictures



posted on Dec, 18 2008 @ 08:03 AM
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Here are some of the pictures.





here is a link to a nice high quality shot
www.airliners.net...&tbl=MILITARY&photo_nr=71&sok=&sort=_order_by_photo_id_DESC_&prev_id=1449677&n ext_id=1449643


[edit on 18-12-2008 by Canada_EH]



posted on Jan, 12 2009 @ 04:16 AM
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www.flightglobal.com...


EADS has asked Airbus Military A400M customer nations to accept a further two-year delay to deliveries of the airlifter as it battles to get the troubled programme back on track.

The French air force had originally been due to achieve an initial operational capability with the A400M in early 2010 - later slipped to mid-2010 - but EADS is now suggesting that deliveries take place "around three years after first flight", pushing the in-service date to at least mid-2012. The manufacturer had previously said that outstanding issues with the aircraft's propulsion system meant that the A400M was unlikely to take to the air before the second half of 2009, "although it is still working with the engine consortium to firm up a date for the first flight".



yet another delay - amazing
- bodes well for the A350



posted on Jan, 12 2009 @ 04:29 AM
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Din`t know this one:

RAF A400M will NOT be fitted for IFR from the outset - cost saving measure :O

and neither will the A330`s either :O



posted on Jan, 12 2009 @ 05:08 AM
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In the time it's taken them to get the first A400M built let alone flown they could have built 200 production An-70 Transports at lower cost with better capability and have given the Ukraine economy a huge shot in the arm.

The An-70 has a bigger hold, can fly further and lift more from small dirt strips and fly it further than this prissy French airliner with propellers.

It will be non stop laughs as this thing screws up on operations. Ah who cares?
It's only your taxpayer dollars they're wasting.

[edit on 12-1-2009 by sy.gunson]



posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 06:48 PM
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Originally posted by Harlequin
www.flightglobal.com...


yet another delay - amazing
- bodes well for the A350


I don't see why it would have any effect on the A350 whatsoever.



posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 06:50 PM
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Originally posted by sy.gunson
In the time it's taken them to get the first A400M built let alone flown they could have built 200 production An-70 Transports at lower cost with better capability and have given the Ukraine economy a huge shot in the arm.

The An-70 has a bigger hold, can fly further and lift more from small dirt strips and fly it further than this prissy French airliner with propellers.

It will be non stop laughs as this thing screws up on operations. Ah who cares?
It's only your taxpayer dollars they're wasting.

[edit on 12-1-2009 by sy.gunson]


Yes but they've alread got vested interests in the A400 because american firms are invloved in its production, therefore if any significant number was required it wouldn't be a wild leap to suggest a manufacturing operation in the USl.



posted on Jan, 18 2009 @ 03:32 PM
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I found this news link on another forum: www.militaryphotos.net :

"The A400M project/program might be canceled"



It is a persistent rumor in the aviation community: the Airbus management - particularly Fabrice Brégier entourage - and at least a government part of A400M program have studied the option of scrubing the entire program.

The situation is worsening as we told here earlier this week. Wednesday, EADS CEO Louis Gallois also acknowledged that his group had "totally underestimated the complexity of the aircraft," reports the weekly "Air and Cosmos" ...


The production of the aircraft, which had begun in Spain, has been frozen until further notice. Clearly, waiting for a technical solution that would make the FADEC (digital turboprop) as well as a "business solution", with the renegotiation of the contract (no penalties and acceptance by States to receive airplanes with degraded standards in relation to the order). As a professional in this area, very pessimistic about the future of this project, "throughout fiasco, we must look at what is left to spend, rather than what has already been spent." However, little has been spent, if only in relation to the estimated cost of the program ...


Link: secretdefense.blogs.liberation.fr...

(Note: Link is leads to article in french, you might translate it via googel.translate or babelfish etc... English text here came from the OP off the other forum.)

Wahahahahahahhahhaahahhahhahahahaha! All that effort for propably nothing whilest Aircraft who are more superiour are available to production and fielding before this program even got started
(Hint, hint: AN-70)

[edit on 18/1/2009 by James R. Hawkwood]



posted on Jan, 19 2009 @ 01:56 PM
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It is a persistent rumor in the aviation community: the Airbus management - particularly Fabrice Brégier entourage - and at least a government part of A400M program have studied the option of scrubing the entire program.


What the French article actually says is that it is a persistant rumour that the airbus management and at least one of the governments involved must have studied the option of cancelling the program.

That is a non news item. It begins with "persistant rumour" if they had any real information about this, they'd write that, but they don't so its just a silly rumour, and of course some people must have studied the possibilty of cancelling the project, whenever any project anywhere goes against expectations people analyse the situation to see if they should cancel the project. That is always an ongoing process.

That said, this is not a program that is going to get cancelled. Airbus is upset that the governments involved are penalising them rather than supporting them as would occur with a US government military project contracted to say Boeing or Lockheed Martin. This is the complaint here, Airbus is complaining that the EU governments are handling the A400M contract harshly.



posted on Jan, 19 2009 @ 02:04 PM
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Originally posted by CloudySkye
I don't see why it would have any effect on the A350 whatsoever.


It could if assests were diverted to speed up A400 production. It happened with the A380 when the wiring issue came to light. The A350 is still a paper airplne and not yet in mock up so delays there may be viewed differently that with other programs.



posted on Jan, 19 2009 @ 03:48 PM
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reply to post by CloudySkye
 


I think that EADS, or Airbus Military if you like, really has got nobody to blame for the stance of the member governments but itself. It offered a fixed price for the entire programme up to and including service entry. They were remarkably silly to offer this for a programme upon which detail design had not yet begun.

Airbus complaint against the customer nations is that they overruled the manufacturer in the engine choice, Airbus wanted the PWC engine all along, but they still offered the same terms, their own fault again.

You might have expected BAE Systems, an Airbus member at the time, to point them in the direction of the Nimrod MRA.4 programme for an example of wehy that is not a good idea.

Therefore the members countries are perfectly entitled to take the stance, so far voiced only by the UK MoD, that in basic terms; 'we signed a contract, you've had the money, where's the plane?'

As a reasult of these delays Airbus are looking at offering leases on A330's, which helps a little by freeing up traffic currently handled by Tristars, allowing them to retire, and leaving the Hercules and C-17 free for front line duties.

The RAF is now repeating its long time desire to increase its C-17 fleet, seeing the A400M delay as a good opportunity as the current UK transport fleet cannot stand a four year delay in deliveries because ALL our Herc's, even the C-130J's are getting fatigued.

No doubt Boeing and Lockheed are smiling warmly and rubbing their hands at this one.



posted on Jan, 19 2009 @ 03:52 PM
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Originally posted by waynos
reply to post by CloudySkye
 

The RAF is now repeating its long time desire to increase its C-17 fleet, seeing the A400M delay as a good opportunity as the current UK transport fleet cannot stand a four year delay in deliveries because ALL our Herc's, even the C-130J's are getting fatigued.


Any idea on how many they would like? versus how many they can afford?



posted on Jan, 19 2009 @ 04:13 PM
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reply to post by waynos
 


I don't argue that the contract was naively entered into, just that it is not a news piece that at some point it has been thought about as whether to cancel the project or not.

The only correction I have for what you are saying was that at the signing, BAE systems OWNED a chunk of Airbus, about 30% if I remember correctly with the rest being owned by EADS, unless it was before EADS in which case the various component companies of EADS held the remaining share (It's been a while and I can't remember exactly when it was all confirmed).

It is my sincere belief though that A400M would not be seeing the delays it currently has if it had used the PW engines. Thats not anything I can prove though, its just my belief from the observations I have made.



posted on Jan, 19 2009 @ 06:49 PM
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Fred, in answer to your question, I have heard that the RAF would like to increase its fleet from its current 6, up to 10 C-17's. I can't back this number up, except to say I notice it is exactly the same as the Number of Short Belfasts the RAF used to operate, which was the last big British transport on this scale. The RAF originally began with 4 C-17's all on lease, so the number seems to be quite fluid.

CloudySkye, BAE owned 20% of Airbus, which is what I meant by 'Airbus member' and which is why I though that someone might have said 'are you sure you want to do this?'

Regarding the engines, I tend to agree with you, and I suspect that Airbus itself does too.

There are other issues too, it is suggested, but not confirmed that the aircraft is 20 tons overweight and 13 tons light on payload. This gave me a sense of deja Vu as I was reading about the R101 the other day and read something very similar. Lets hope the A400M doesn't also end up burned out in a French field.



[edit on 19-1-2009 by waynos]



posted on Jan, 20 2009 @ 01:53 AM
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Originally posted by waynos
There are other issues too, it is suggested, but not confirmed that the aircraft is 20 tons overweight and 13 tons light on payload.
[edit on 19-1-2009 by waynos]


Thats not a rumour I've heard before, I could believe 13 light on payload, but 20 tons overweight sounds ridiculous, they wouldn't have let it get to the stage its at being so hugely off the mark.

I'll check it out though, and I'll see what I come up with.



posted on Jan, 20 2009 @ 10:52 AM
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According to Flight International it is 'only' 12 tons overweight and 3 tons light on payload so maybe my figures got lost in translation. Still seems a lot of weight to be accounted for though.




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