The container designed to carry engines for F-35 jets, for example to replace an engine on a deployed F-35, is certified for carriage in the C-17 and C-130J but not the A400M.
F135 engines for the F-35 Lightning are transported in specialist containers designed by the engine’s manufacturer, Pratt and Whitney. The C-17 and C-130J aircraft were certified to carry the container in May 2020.
The information came to light in response to a written Parliamentary question.
Kevan Jones, MP for North Durham, Asled in a written question:
“To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, pursuant to the Answer of 6 September 2021 to Question 40639 on Joint Strike Fighter Aircraft, which UK military aircraft are certified to carry that container; and on what date those aircraft were certified to do so.”
Jeremy Quin, Minister for Defence Procurement, responded:
“The F135 engine container is planned for carriage in the Globemaster C-17 and Hercules C-130J. The aircraft were certified to carry the container in May 2020.”
On their website, the RAF describe the A400m Atlas as follows:
“Entering operational service with the Royal Air Force in 2014, Atlas (Atlas C.1 A400M) provides tactical airlift and strategic oversize lift capabilities complementing those of the Hercules and C-17 fleets..
Atlas (Atlas C.1 A400M) has the ability to carry a 37-tonne payload over 2,000nm to established and remote civilian and military airfields, and short unprepared or semi-prepared strips. Capable of operating at altitudes up to 40,000ft, Atlas also offers impressive low-level capability.”