June 17, 2024

MediaBizNet

Complete Australian News World

Ukraine: French tanker sinks off Bulgarian border

Ukraine: French tanker sinks off Bulgarian border

It’s an exercise that demonstrates that despite Brexit, military cooperation between France and the UK is in good shape. The French Air Force and the Royal Air Force organized a joint air policing mission on behalf of NATO along the borders of Eastern Europe. Go to Bulgaria. Two British Typhoon fighter jets patrol the Ukrainian border. The plane is refueled by a French airline from Istres air base near Marseille.

We were able to board this A330 tanker. In its guts and wings, 90 tons of fuel. We leave just after noon. direction in a straight line, or nearly so, along the eastern border of Bulgaria and the shores of the Black Sea. Cruising speed is 600 kmph at an altitude of 12,000 meters. A quick look at the snow capped peaks of the Alps, 3 hours flight to our left, where the two meet. Eurofighter Typhoon EnglishFighter jets operating across the border.

Refueling of a British Typhoon by an A330 Phoenix from the Istres base above the border between Bulgaria and Ukraine

Credit: Etienne Baudu

The tanker then descended 7,000 meters in a thick cloud layer. Spectacular and always subtle intrigue According to Captain Romuald, the captain: “We meet at a certain point and at a certain time. As soon as they see our plane, they join us. There, they slip behind us. Under each of our wings, we have a ” pod” from which a flexible tube about thirty meters long. The tube emerges and at the end floats a basket the size of a basketball hoop. The fighter pilot attaches his refueling pole“.

READ  A patient has a shell in the rectum: English hospital war

A true aerial ballet with extreme precision

And then it’s a A real aerial ballet, extreme precision, the tanker’s cabin is less than 10 meters from the predator’s wingtip, all at 500 km/h. In the cockpit, the “Boomer” or ARO (Air Refueling Operator), controls refueling in front of an impressive series of screens and controls. “You have to focus on the speed of the approach, the stability of the equipment, to avoid the risk of a collision,” explains Staff Sergeant David. The tanker turns left and the two fighters form a close maneuver.

The action takes place behind the scenes, on a sort of virtual racetrack. A “protected” area where the tanker rotates, where civilian aircraft do not fly. A “lot of gas” lasts about ten minutes. This time, 4.5 tonnes of fuel is provided to them. A second refueling will take place in the same area an hour and a half later, when the Typhoons will perform their full surveillance mission.

An A330 Phoenix of the Bretagne air-to-air refueling force of the 125th base at Istres

An A330 Phoenix of the Bretagne air-to-air refueling force of the 125th base at Istres

Credit: Etienne Baudu

Confirm our will to protect NATO and Europe’s borders


Capt. Romuald, Capt

The two British fighters were tasked for the day to fly over the border between Bulgaria and Ukraine, possibly along the Black Sea. Monitor this boundary to avoid any intrusionCaptain Romuald explains: “At the moment we have passed Bulgaria, but this type of work is carried out on all the borders with Ukraine, from Estonia in the north to Bulgaria in the south. It is a mission to be especially present. to emphasize NATO and our desire to protect Europe’s borders”.

In-flight interview with Captain Romuel, captain of the A330 Pénix

In-flight interview with Captain Romuel, captain of the A330 Pénix

READ  Trial Young Morocco has a greater demand for English than French and Arabic

Credit: Etienne Baudu

The A330 Pénix refuels from the Istres base for all NATO fighters operating on the eastern borders, whether French, English, Spanish, Italian, American, Dutch, Polish or German.

Since the start of the conflict in Ukraine, almost About 250 of these missions are flown from the Istres base. Almost daily tasks.

The day’s work lasted for almost 7 hours and an hour and a half. Return to Istres base overnight before one of the other 8 A330 Phoenix aircraft of the Brittany squadron departs again for eastern borders.

Return to Istres base at night after supply mission at 7.30am on the border between Bulgaria and Ukraine.

Return to Istres base at night after supply mission at 7.30am on the border between Bulgaria and Ukraine.

Credit: Etienne Baudu

Recommended by the editorial board

News from the RTL editorial staff in your mailbox.

Thanks to your RTL account, subscribe to the RTL News Newsletter to follow all the news on a daily basis