October 13 - The construction of the first of five Airbus BelugaXL super transporters is on schedule, with the power-on process scheduled to start at the end of the year.

Eric Belloc, who heads the BelugaXL final assembly activity, said all elements for the aircraft's bespoke tail section have now been received. These are due to be integrated on the airframe once systems, mechanical, and electrical integration - which is currently underway - is completed. 

The next major step will be the assembly of the front main deck cargo door, which is scheduled for the beginning of December.

The second aircraft will also start the final assembly process in December; the remaining three aircraft will be produced at a rate of one per year, says Airbus.

The first take-off of the BelugaXL is scheduled for next summer, and the aircraft is due to enter service in 2019.