12th Oct 2004, 09:49
Just browsing the RAF website doing some research, and got slightly confused by this:
On the equipment page, a future requirement is the A400M
Upon reading the Planned future changes to defence airfields, aircraft/crew numbers/squdrons; they mentioned the A330 as the replacemement for the Tristar/VC10 when they come out of service BUT not mention o the A400M
So which is it?
Also, what happened to the ASTOR Sentinel R1? That doesn't have a mention anywhere either...
Thanks in advance
12th Oct 2004, 10:03
A400M was once Future Large Aircraft (FLA); FLA was supposed to repace all large a/c. That proved unfeasible, so the tanker/transport requirement became Future Strategic Tanker Aircraft (FSTA) and another fight arose between A400M and C130J as the Future Transport Aircraft (FTA). FSTA then became a Private Finance Initiative (PFI) project; the preferred platform became the A330 Multi-Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) offered to the rental Air Force (rAF) by AirTanker. Meanwhile, A400M which had been the FLA was given the go-ahead to be the FTA; however, to fill the gap, a Short Term Strategic Airlifter, STSA, was needed and that became a fight between the An124 and the C-17. The rAF decided upon leased C-17s as STSA to fill the gap before FTA became reality; however, the C-17s will now be bought and the STSA will become another FTA, but not the sole FTA as that will still be the A400M. Which, of course had once been FLA and rejected as FSTA. Nevertheless, the Common Standard Aircraft (CSA)A400M does have a requirement to have an AAR role, but not as a strategic tanker as that will be the job of the FSTA, presumably the A330 MRTT.... Although there is, of course, the A310 MRTT in service with other countries but not offered by any of the FSTA bidders even though it had been studied under an earlier project by MoD Department of Future Systems as it then was...
C-17 which was the STSA but wasn't an FSTA will be an FTA.
A400M which was FLA, then rejected as FSTA will become the 'official' FTA.
A330 MRTT will probably be the FSTA under a PFI project.
Oh - and ASTOR is well under way.
12th Oct 2004, 10:35
Mischief-maker! Confusing the lad like that.
A400M: Tactical transport with AAR tanker capability.
A330 MRTT: Strategic tanker-transport.
And you missed out the C-130J in your alphabetti spaghetti......
12th Oct 2004, 10:42
You mean Tranche 1 of the FTA requirement which was also a way of offsetting the requirement for a larger STSA fleet until Tranche 2 of FTA came on stream with either more C130Js or, as turned out, the A400M (ex-FLA, not FSTA)?
12th Oct 2004, 12:09
so with the proposed purchase of C17 what is the future for A400m are we looking at another European cock up?
12th Oct 2004, 15:36
its not nearly as straightforward as this !
Ricketty old Funbus is extended,far too complicated Trimotor is extended. The eternal diatribe between C130's goes on and on with a promised decision by next spring. Still cant make head n'or tail of the FSTA argument and the A400 is to be armed with sparrowhawk and redtop and blue steel to forge the way ahead. All of whatever we have is going to live at BZN and we will all be happy..........except.......it will not fit.
Im sorry its been a long day.