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Airbus unveils new A400M military transport plane

 
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selecta
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 2:12 am    Post subject: Airbus unveils new A400M military transport plane Reply with quote

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SEVILLE, Spain: Airbus is sticking by its prediction of a six-to-12-month delay in deliveries of its A400M military transport planes, company officials said Thursday as they presented the new aircraft at a glittering ceremony in Spain.

The company hopes to carry out the first test flight of the plane by September or October, Airbus Military CEO Carlos Suarez said.

"That is our goal," he told reporters. If all goes well, the first planes would be delivered in mid to late 2010 to the French air force, he said.

The hulking, gray aircraft with a black nose and four black propellers with curved blades is designed to replace Lockheed Martin Corp.'s aging C-130 Hercules cargo aircraft used by the U.S. Air Force as well as the retired C-160 Transall transport aircraft developed by a French and German consortium.

Airbus parent company EADS says the new plane represents the most ambitious military procurement program ever undertaken in Europe. The project started in 2003 when seven NATO countries ordered 180 of the planes. Airbus now has orders for 192.

EADS CEO Louis Gallois hailed the culmination of the project at the rollout ceremony in Seville, home to plane's final assembly line. He called the decision to build the aircraft "a big moment for European integration."

The Airbus A400M is a multi-role military aircraft that can be used as an aerial refueling tanker and to drop supplies such as tents, blankets and food to isolated communities during humanitarian relief operations by European forces.

Airbus says it uses state-of-the-art technology and materials and has twice the capacity and payload of the aircraft types it will replace.

The rollout ceremony featured acrobats twirling in the air as they hung from the ceiling of an airplane hangar and a flamenco show, the drum roll to the presentation of the plane, which was slowly towed out onto the tarmac at the factory.

It is the first complete version of the A400M. "It is not a mock-up. This is the plane that will make the first test flights," Suarez said.

After the ceremony, King Juan Carlos sat in the plane's cockpit during a tour of the aircraft.
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vivekman
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 9:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wouldn't it have been a good idea to power this aircraft with jet engines instead of turboprops? Or is there a specific benefit with turboprops apart from a lower cost? Question
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Aseem
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 10:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

vivekman wrote:
Wouldn't it have been a good idea to power this aircraft with jet engines instead of turboprops? Or is there a specific benefit with turboprops apart from a lower cost? Question


The only advantage I can think of turboprops is that they allow airdropping at slow speed and low altitude!
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sammyk
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 10:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That is probably one of the reasons. This aircraft is supposed to have a mission similar to the C-130.
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HAWK21M
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 2:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

vivekman wrote:
Wouldn't it have been a good idea to power this aircraft with jet engines instead of turboprops? Or is there a specific benefit with turboprops apart from a lower cost? Question


Higher Lift to Drag ratio too.Needing shorter runway.
Slower speeds enable accurate supplies dropping.
regds
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karatecatman
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 4:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Copyright
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selecta
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 08, 2008 12:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

looks like the C-17 with props
i like it Laughing
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