The Turkish Air Force hopes to restart flight operations with its Airbus A400M Atlas tactical airlifters in January 2016. Not with the first two aircraft delivered, but with no. 3 only.
The third Atlas was handed over to the Türk Hava Kuvvetleri (THK) at the end of last week. The Turkish mechanics and experts are now going through loads of additional acceptance checks to assure it is ready to be officially fielded after the new year started.
Turkish A400M crash
Quick calculators may wonder: what happened with the first two THK airlifters. Well, they were grounded following the crash of what was already supposed to be the third Turkish A400M on 9 May 2015. Deemed unreliable the first two Turkish Atlas’s have been sent back to Spain for retrofitting and software updates.
Turkey has 10 A400Ms on ordered. The final Atlas is expected in 2018, but the program already ran into lengthy delays even before the 2014 A400M crash in Sevilla (Seville).
© 2015 Airheadsfly.com editor Marcel Burger
Featured image: The third Turkish A400M in Seville in the end of October 2015. Special thanks to Paweł Bondaryk for making this photo available to us (Image © Paweł Bondaryk)