Airbus Military demonstrates Fuselage Refuelling Unit

The Airbus Military A330 MRTT has successfully passed fuel to receiver aircraft using the Fuselage Refuelling Unit (FRU) for the first time, meaning all of the aircraft’s refuelling systems have now been demonstrated.

In a three-hour 10-minute sortie from Getafe near Madrid on 21 January, the Future Strategic Transport Aircraft (FSTA) variant for the UK Royal Air Force conducted a series of ’wet contacts’ with two F-18 fighters of the Spanish Air Force.

Contacts were successfully performed with both fighters at an altitude of around 15,000ft and at speeds from 250kt to 325kt.

The FRU, developed and supplied by Cobham of the UK, is a hose and drogue similar to those fitted under the wings but with a higher rate of fuel transfer.