Airbus has received wings for the first Airbus A400M new generation airlifter for the Spanish Air Force at the Final Assembly Line (FAL) in San Pablo, Seville.
Known as MSN44, these first large elements of the aircraft were shipped from the UK to St Nazaire, France, and later transported to Seville using a specially designed giant Airbus Beluga aircraft.
According to Airbus, the wings will enter into the final assembly process as the aircraft prepares for delivery in the second quarter of 2016.
The A400M is a multi-national military transport aircraft designed to serve as a tactical airlifter with strategic capabilities. It is powered by four EuroProp TP400-D6 turboprop engines.
Powered by four EuroProp TP400-D6 turboprop engines, the A400M will have a lifting capacity of up to 30t, and can also be configured to conduct long-range cargo and troop transport, medical evacuation, aerial refuelling and electronic surveillance missions.
Moreover, the aircraft will be able to operate both at low and high-level altitudes and to deploy troops and equipment between and within theatres of operation using either parachute or landing on short, unprepared or semi-prepared strips.
In May, Airbus halted production and delivery of the model after an A400M military transport plane crashed during tests near Seville in southern Spain, killing four people on-board.
Later, the firm resumed deliveries of its A400M aircraft after Spanish regulator DGAM lifted all flight restrictions on new production aircraft.
Meanwhile, Airbus recently delivered the seventh A400M aircraft to the UK Royal Air Force.
Image: The wings being unloaded from the open nose of the Beluga into the FAL through a set of doors shaped around the contours of the Beluga. Photo: © Airbus DS GmbH.