Atlas aircraft have been cleared to conduct low-level parachuting following the successful completion of a capability demonstration, say the Royal Air Force.

Following trials in the United States last year, a capability demonstration was given by the Air and Space Warfare Centre to RAF Brize Norton based 24 Squadron in March.

“In a series of day and night sorties, paratroopers were dropped simultaneously from both side exit doors over Everleigh Drop Zone on Salisbury Plain. 24 Squadron and the Airborne Delivery Wing will now train their instructor cadre, aircrew, and despatchers before the broader airborne force.

Richard Curzon, Head of Air Mobility Capability Delivery in the RAF and responsible for delivery of the Atlas Programme, recognises this clearance as a significant milestone in the incremental expansion of a deployable airborne forces capability. He thanked a combined effort from the RAF and Army, trials evaluation teams, Defence Equipment & Support (DE&S) and Airbus in achieving this clearance, with additive manufacturing techniques being used to increase the speed in which technical challenges have been overcome.”

Atlas is a four-engine turboprop aircraft that can deliver 37 tonnes of cargo over 2,000 nautical miles at an impressive speed. As well as deploying troops and equipment between theatres, the aircraft has been used to support many humanitarian missions recently including the dropping of aid in Gaza.

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George has a degree in Cyber Security from Glasgow Caledonian University and has a keen interest in naval and cyber security matters and has appeared on national radio and television to discuss current events. George is on Twitter at @geoallison
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Fen Tiger
Fen Tiger (@guest_809913)
25 days ago

At Last!

John Clark
John Clark (@guest_809962)
25 days ago
Reply to  Fen Tiger

Yep, now let’s get the 8 additional examples ordered to replace the departed C130 force…

Lee John fursman
Lee John fursman (@guest_810148)
24 days ago
Reply to  John Clark

Yeah with no hercules we would have to go back to the Catapult…

John Clark
John Clark (@guest_810234)
23 days ago

?? er catapult ?

Andrew D
Andrew D (@guest_810268)
23 days ago
Reply to  John Clark


Graham M
Graham M (@guest_810747)
22 days ago
Reply to  Fen Tiger

How many years did that take?!

DeeBee (@guest_810172)
24 days ago

I remember there was ( still maybe) some criticism of this aircraft replaying the Hercules, not sure why, is there anything this aircraft can’t do what the Hercules could?

Ben Coe
Ben Coe (@guest_810208)
23 days ago

What’s happened about A400M and on flight refuelling? Not sure if it was a capability the RAF intended to adopt, but seem to remember others did, but their were problems?

John (@guest_811391)
20 days ago

Not before time.