• The Airbus A3R system uses a series of 3D cameras and image processing software to precisely determine the location of the receiving aircraft’s refuelling receptacle in space. Credit: Defence
    The Airbus A3R system uses a series of 3D cameras and image processing software to precisely determine the location of the receiving aircraft’s refuelling receptacle in space. Credit: Defence
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Nigel Pittaway | Melbourne

Airbus Defence and Space announced this week that it has successfully demonstrated Automatic Air to Air Refuelling (A3R) contacts between its A310 Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) test-bed and a Portuguese Air Force F-16 fighter. 

The tests were carried out off the Portuguese coast on March 21 in a world first operation which involved six contacts between tanker and fighter, flying at 25,000 feet and at a speed of 270 knots.

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