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The A400M is tested in flight refueling with a Transall

(credit: Airbus Military)

(B2) The A400M, the future first European transport aircraft, recently performed an in-flight refueling simulation. For the occasion, the French Air Force lent a Transall C-160. The two aircraft carried out around twenty "blank" refueling operations, including one lasting 12 minutes, which corresponds to the average time for a fuel transmission operation, under normal conditions. Real refueling tests should take place in the first half of 2013. The new jewel of Airbus had in the past already operated "blank" refueling with a British Royal Air Force VC10 in February 2011 as well as with an A330 Next generation MRTT in May 2012.

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