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October 27, 2015

Royal Air Force’s A400M Atlas visits JASDF base for first time

The UK Royal Air Force's (RAF) A400M Atlas transport aircraft has visited Japan, landing at Miho Base of the Japanese Air Self Defence Force (JASDF).

By Samseer M

A400M

The UK Royal Air Force’s (RAF) A400M Atlas transport aircraft has visited Japan, landing at Miho Base of the Japanese Air Self Defence Force (JASDF).

This latest development marks the first time landing of an RAF aircraft in a JASDF base and also the first A400M Atlas to fly to the Far East.

Along with the aircraft, crew from 70 Squadron and 24 Squadron based in RAF Brize Norton also met with counterparts in the JASDF 403 Squadron of the 3rd Tactical Airlift Wing.

Captain of the flight Squadron leader Stu Patton said: "I feel privileged to visit Japan.

"From start to finish, it has been a phenomenal experience.

"The crew had an excellent opportunity to learn about capabilities of JASDF aircraft and have been honoured by the hospitality offered by our hosts at Miho Airbase."

The JASDF and RAF crew exchanged opinions about their aircrafts during the stay at Miho Airbase.

Patton added: "We are in different parts of the world, but we share a similar culture as air transport officers.

"The crew had an excellent opportunity to learn about capabilities of JASDF aircraft and have been honoured by the hospitality offered by our hosts at Miho Airbase."

"I look forward to working even closer with Japanese colleagues as their new C-2 transport aircraft comes into service in the near future."

Before arriving in Japan, the A400M Atlas and its crew visited locations including Subang in Malaysia and Seoul for the Aerospace and Defence Exhibition.

The Airbus-built 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.

The RAF received the seventh A400M aircraft from Airbus Defence and Space in September.


Image: RAF’s A400M Atlas crew met with counterparts in the Japanese Air Self Defence Force at Miho Base. Photo: © Crown copyright.

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