A Double 7 for the A400M: French and UK Air Forces Ramp Up


2015-09-19  In June, the French Air Force received its 7th A400M. The aircraft delivered to France was the 13th production aircraft of 174 currently on order

Then this month, the Royal Air Force received its 7th A400M.

MSN 24, the 7th RAF A400M. Credit: Airbus Defence and Space
MSN 24, the 7th RAF A400M. Credit: Airbus Defence and Space

According to the British Ministry of Defence, the receipt of the latest A400M allowed the RAF to reach a key milestone.

The handover of the seventh A400M aircraft from Airbus Defence and Space means the £2.75 billion program for 22 aircraft has achieved its In-Service Date (ISD), a declaration of the fleet’s capability to undertake extended world-wide tasks.

Four of the aircraft are now operating from Brize Norton while three others are being fitted with UK-specific systems required to operate in hostile environments, ahead of the next operational capability milestone which is due next year…..

The MOD’s Chief of Materiel (Air), Air Marshal Simon Bollom said:

The achievement of the A400M In Service Date is a key milestone for the Royal Air Force and is testament to the outstanding work of the DE&S Project Team working closely with the RAF and industry. The fleet now has the core capabilities required to train the instructors and crews, and to undertake logistics missions.

As the fleet continues to build, more advanced military capabilities will be introduced as planned over the coming months including aerial delivery of stores, parachuting and advanced self-protection capabilities.