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Airbus A330 Jet

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RR Trent
2 x 71,100 lbs. ea.
264,00 lbs.
510,000 lbs.
245,000 lbs.
293 (2 class)
192 ft. 11 in.
197 ft. 10 in.
537 mph
563 mph
2,420 fpm
41,500 feet
7,770 miles

Airbus A330 Jet
Airbus A330 Jet

The Airbus A330 jet uses the same fuselage for six aircraft variants. Pilots who fly the family of aircraft will find nearly identical cockpits and controls in all of the aircraft.

The benefit of the common Airbus A330 jet design is to minimize expenses while maximizing profits. This is accomplished because Airbus A330 jet aircraft are designed to operate on routes from regional to international. Sharing the same fuselage keeps aircraft production costs down. Having identical cockpits keeps the cost of pilot training down.

Airbus A330 Jet
Airbus A330 Jet - Air Tanker

A variant of the Airbus A330 jet is the MRTT - Multi Role Tanker Transport. It is available with a centerline refueling boom and a pair of hose and drogue pods from its wings. The refueling systems are operated from the aircraft flight deck. They are compatible with all NATO aircraft. The Airbus A330 jet air taker is itself capable of being refueled while in flight.

In addition to air to air refueling, the Airbus A330 jet air tanker can seat up to 380 troops, or handle 99,000 lbs. of equipment while operating as a cargo hauler. It can also carry up to 180 stretchers for medical transport.

In 2011 a total of fourteen Airbus A330 jet aircraft were converted into air tankers for the British RAF. The air tankers are named "Voyager".

To date a total 24 Airbus A330 jet air tanker aircraft are in service, with another 38 on order by France, Great Britain, Saudi Arabia, and Singapore. The USAF ordered 179 of the Airbus A330 jet air tankers, but the order was canceled by the U.S. government and then given to Boeing. To date the U.S.A.F. is the only customer for Boeing's tanker that is still not operational and has been plagued with cost overruns and delays.

We received the following email from Bill Dell: "When the U.S.A.F. first contracted for their new air tanker, I was working for Northrop Grumman Corp. (NGC). They were the prime contractor who were to team with Airbus; NGC supplying the fuel tank and boom system, Airbus supplying their Airbus A330 jet airframes. Corporate Facilities had a location planned to do all the work; Mobile, AL airport that during WWII times was a large aircraft building location. NGC had their own team of Facilities people drawn primarily from the division I was with at the time based in El Segundo, California, U.S.A.

A company named Austin had been named as the designers and builders of the Airbus A330 jet facility that was to be adjacent to NGC's. On another project at El Segundo, I worked with an Austin engineer who was just waiting for the final funding to go to AL and start.

The Congressional and Senate reps who were in Boeing's pocket plus all the Unions working at Boeing (and the reps THEY had in their pockets) got the award to NGC/Airbus for the Airbus A330 jet overturned, screaming the airplane was built in a foreign country and that was against U.S. policy. At the same time, parts and assemblies of multiple airplanes built under program contracts awarded to Lockheed and Boeing were being supplied by foreign companies.

The USAF team evaluating the tanker submittals documented the superiority of the NGC and Airbus A330 jet proposal and it appears their concern about Boeing's product was correct as they still aren't very close to having a completed tanker. NGC and Airbus had a prototype Airbus A330 ready to test as soon as funding was appropriated.

I will retain for "posterity" the poster passed out to NGC employees at El Segundo after that first USAF decision; an artist's rendering of the Airbus A330 jet with block lettering "KC-45 Our Next Tanker."

Bill, thank you very much for telling us about your experiences with the Airbus A330 jet air tanker program.  You can find the photo Bill sent immediately below.

Airbus A330 Jet
Airbus A330 Jet - Air Tanker

Airbus A330 Jet
Airbus A330 Jet - Mes-Avions

The Airbus A330 jet from the Mes-Avions-rc.net has a 148 1/2" wingspan with a length of 156". Power comes from a pair of JetCat P80 turbines.

Airbus A330 Jet
Airbus A330 Jet - Johnson

The Airbus A330 jet from Dave Johnson has a wingspan of 192" and weight of 66 lbs. Twin TJT 3000 turbines provide 20 lbs. of thrust each.

Fly by wire controls, activated by jet fighter-like side sticks, keep the Airbus A330 jet stable and lower the chance of pilot fatigue. Cockpits are all glass and equipped with the most advanced avionics.

While the 18.5 foot wide airframe offers high passenger comfort, the lower deck cargo areas can carry cargo pallets and containers. The ability to accommodate up to twice the cargo of similar size aircraft makes the A330 jet profitable as freight transports when they can not be flying passengers.

The aircraft cabin is the highest in its class. This allows for additional overhead storage capacity and easier access. Airbus tells us that the average interior noise levels in their A330 jet aircraft are fifty percent quieter than other similar aircraft.

Composites used in Airbus A330 jet construction reduce corrosion, keep overall weight to a minimum, and provide a strong airframe and wings.

Airbus A330 Jet
Airbus A330 Jet - Michel

Master builder Peter Michel and friends with the Airbus A330 jet from Rauch-Airliner.com. It has a wingspan of 148" and a length of 157". Weight is about 42 lbs. For power it needs a pair of at least 17 lb. ea. thrust turbines.

The wings of the Airbus A330 jet are made to distribute lift evenly over their entire area. This keeps their weight down while providing positive aircraft control from minimal takeoff and landing speeds up to high cruising speeds.

Less drag and weight for the engines to overcome mean greater fuel economy. This translates to lower operating costs.

To date over 1,200 Airbus A330 jet aircraft of all types have been produced. Over 60 airlines are using them around the world.

Airbus A330 jet
Airbus A330 Jet - Rausch

The Airbus A330 jet, also from Rausch. Its wingspan is 148" and length is 145". Weight is around 41 lbs.

Modellflugfreak.ch.vu has information and pictures of an Airbus A330 jet project. Length and wingspan are both 98 1/2".

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