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Airbus tanker refuels two fighters at same time

An Airbus A330 tanker for the first time refueled two fighter jets simultaneously during a flight test sortie.

The tanker, using its left and right under-wing pods, transferred more than 25,000 pounds of fuel to two NATO F/A-18 fighters, according to EADS, the parent company of Airbus.

The refueling was done by the Royal Australian Air Force.

The Australian tanker is nearly identical in configuration, EADs said, to the Northrop Grumman KC-45 Airbus tanker being offered to the U.S. Air Force to replace aerial refuelers. The tanker uses a mix of boom and pod refueling technologies.

The first of five tankers to go to Australia will be delivered in mid 2010, EADS said. Twenty-eight A330 tankers have been ordered to date.

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