It was able to launch 20 tons of water in less than 10 seconds

The test carried out by Airbus in Spain to use an A400M Atlas as a fire extinguisher

The A400M Atlas is a transport aircraft that has already proven its capacity as a tanker aircraft for in-flight refueling tasks.

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Today Airbus has tested a new role for this military aircraft: firefighting. The test has been carried out in Spain, specifically in Guadalajara, with the collaboration of personnel from the Spanish Air Force. A removable fire extinguishing kit has been used to fill the water inside the aircraft. The test was done in daylight conditions with a minimum operating height of 150 feet (45 meters) and with flight speeds as low as 125 knots and discharges of up to 20 tons of water in less than 10 seconds. "The main objective of the campaign is to validate the drop water quantity and time as well as the ability of the A400M to carry out this new role with the kit."

During the test, the A400M, one of the copies owned by Airbus, was accompanied by an Air Force C-101 Aviojet, specifically the E.25-55 (54-21), belonging to the Logistics Center for Weapons and Experimentation (CLAEX). "The development of this prototype and the tests have been carried out in close collaboration with the 43rd Group of the Spanish Air Force, as well as European authorities in Firefighting operations and the Ministry for Ecological Transition and Demographic Challenge (MITECO).", Airbus said.

"The Airbus firefighting solution created for the A400M is a roll-on/roll-off (RORO) kit that requires no modification to the aircraft and therefore is interchangeable to any aircraft in the A400M fleet,", Airbus points out. "The water is stored in a fixed tank in the cargo hold, and retained by two independent doors. These doors are connected to two flood pipes, so when the discharge is triggered, the water is expelled through two sections at the end of the ramp. The introduction of this RORO solution allows a rapid reaction to unforeseen fires and reconfiguration of the aircraft to any of its other roles."

The aeronautical company has indicated that in the future, "n addition to the development of the production version of this kit, Airbus will analyze this operation also in night time conditions, reinforcing the efficiency and effectiveness of the mission." You can see here the video of the test done today in Getafe:


Photos: Airbus.

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