ON NOVEMBER 10, 2009, the special vehicle park at Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport took delivery of a new aviation fuel tank trailer (model TZA-18-1823 “Low Profile”).
The vehicle is a joint project between the JSC Scientific Production Centre, Aviatechnology and CJSC Mercedes Benz Rus, which resulted from a request from the airport’s fuel tanking company Domodedovo Fuels Services. The vehicle is the first example of a new family of low profile fuel tanks manufactured in Russia.
Domodedovo is handling an increasing number of Airbus A319 / A320 aircraft which have a fuel-filling nozzle located on a wing approximately 10ft 6 in (3.2m) above the ground. A statement from the airport’s press office said that this: “is very low for an ordinary fuel tank trailer and it makes it impossible to fuel the [A319/A320] aircraft from under the wing.”
The need for a fuel tank to handle such: “low” aircraft directly from under its wing with no supporting equipment was: “obvious,” since it saves handling time. A requirement was issued for a tanker not exceeding 9ft (2,75m) in height and this specification was met by a modified Mercedes-Benz Axor 1823L low-chassis tanker with a 4×2 wheel arrangement and a 231hp (170 kW engine). The tank’s capacity is 3,953 imperial gallons (18,000 litres) and the trailer itself is fitted with a lift platform. In order to minimize the vehicle’s length some of its equipment is fitted to both sides of its frame, underneath the tank, making it lower and shorter that previous tankers and enabling greater manoeuvrability on the apron.
The chassis is equipped with air suspension for both forward and rear axles.