First Royal Air Force A400M makes its maiden flight


The first Airbus A400M new generation airlifter, ordered by the Royal Air Force, has made its maiden flight, marking a key milestone towards its delivery. The aircraft, known as MSN15, took off from Seville, Spain, at 14:25 local time (GMT+1) on 30 August and landed back on site five hours and five minutes later.

Edward “Ed” Strongman, Chief Test Pilot Military, who captained the flight, said after landing: “It was very satisfying to conduct this first flight of the first A400M for the Royal Air force. I have no doubt that its combination of true tactical capability with strategic range will be an enormous contributor to future air mobility in the RAF.”

The aircraft is the first of 22 ordered by the UK and will be available for delivery by end September. In RAF service, it will be known as the A400M Atlas.