04/30/2010. The Nord 3400 was the winner of a design competition for a new army artillery observation aircraft which was organized by the French Air Ministry in January, 1957. Work on the prototype was started in the following month and it flew for the first time on January 20, 1958. A second prototype flew on September 13, 1958, and a production series of 150 was built subsequently for the Aviation Legere de l'Armee de Terre (French Army Light Aviaition). The first of these were accepted for service on July 9, 1959, and deliveries were completed in March, 1961.
Features of the design include the use of split flaps under the ailerons and inboard slotted camber-changing flaps for good takeoff and landing performance; a simple method of wing-folding that enables this operation to be carried out by the two crew-members; unusually good all-round view, particularly for the observer whose seat swivels through 360 degrees and whose cabin side-windows are bulged to permit a completely-vertical downward view; and a roomy cabin with large doors that enable the aircraft to be used for casualty-evacuation duties.