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France receives third A330 MRTT from Airbus

Photo: French Air Force

The French defense procurement agency DGA has taken delivery of the third Phénix multi-role A330-MRTT (Multi Role Transport Tanker) from Airbus.

The third of overall 12 aircraft that are scheduled to be delivered by 2023 arrived at the Istres-Le Tubé Air Base on July 10.

The MRTT is a converted A330 airliner, that will be powered by Rolls-Royce Trent 700 engines and equipped with a combination of the Airbus refueling boom system and underwing hose-and-drogue refueling pods. The aircraft can be configured in a variety of layouts carrying up to 272 passengers as well as medevac arrangements including the French MORPHEE intensive care module carrying up to ten patients as well as 88 passengers.

France initially ordered 12 A330 MRTTs under a contract from 2014, before placing an order for an additional three units that will replace the service’s A310 and A340 VIP transport aircraft.

Airbus delivered the first A330 in October 2018.

Airbus photo of the French Air Force’s first A330 MRTT