Airbus on track to resolve A400M gearbox and contract issues

14 JUNE, 2017 SOURCE: FLIGHTGLOBAL.COM BY: STEPHEN TRIMBLE TOULOUSE

After testing a beach landing capability with a Royal Air Force A400M earlier this month, Airbus Defence & Space says it is on track to qualify a redesigned helicopter refuelling system, roll-out a final solution to a power gearbox problem and resolve a dispute over penalties caused by delivery delays.

“Things are going very, very well,” Airbus head of military aircraft Fernando Alonso said on 9 June, adding: “In five to 10 years from now, this will be a reference for logistical transport airplanes.”

But Airbus is still working to recover from what Alonso calls a “very difficult” 2016. On New Year’s Eve in 2015, a flaw was discovered in the propeller-driving power gearbox of the Europrop International (EPI) TP400-D6 engines, requiring Airbus to impose a frequent maintenance interval that restricted operations. An interim solution for the power gearbox issue has reduced the inspection interval to once a year or less, Alonso says. “This is totally acceptable from an operational point of view,” he adds.

But Airbus and EPI plan to release by year-end another modification – called “Pack 2” – that will remove the annual inspection requirement, he says.

Airbus is also negotiating with A400M operators to reduce contractual penalties caused by delivery delays. Being conducted with Europe’s OCCAR defence procurement agency and individual customers, the discussions are “constructive”, Alonso says. “We hope certainly by the end of this year we will have a resolution,” he adds.

In the meantime, Airbus is working to address requirements that the A400M is currently unable to meet. The company has successfully tested an extended refuelling hose that can allow the Atlas to support helicopters, Alonso says, and it is now waiting for OCCAR to approve the proposed redesign.

The A400M programme also is “slowly progressing” with efforts to fix other requirements shortfalls, such as in defensive aids subsystems and air-dropping certain types of cargo, he says.

Source flightglobal.com

****-END-****

EuroProp International (EPI) TP400-D6 engine

TP400-D6 engine – Image mechanicalproducts.blogspot.com

Related post:

Merkel has halted payments with the defence manufacturer Airbus A400M

German Defence Ministry warned that technical challenges and contractual wrangling with Airbus could impair full operational use of A400M

Reports indicate Indonesia has signed a letter of intent to buy Airbus A400M

Indonesian have yet to confirm A400M Acquisition

Indonesia to spend $2 billion to buy 5 A400M

UK signs contract for upgrades, maintenance, and repair services on A400m

Airbus Looks To the US in Search of A400M Buyers

OPINION: Can Airbus bear weight of A400M Atlas?

Looming capability gap in Germany’s military transport fleet may result in the MoD to urge A400M partner nations to procure & jointly operate C-130 Hercules

A400M Military Transport: Details

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s