Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Hot off the press! New milestone for Airbus A350 XWB, with almost 100 flight test hours achieved since first flight

The Airbus A350 XWB flight test campaign has been progressing at full pace
It’s been a month since the Airbus A350 XWB performed its very first flight in Toulouse… but what has been happening with the much-awaited aircraft since that time?

Quite a lot, according to Airbus! In fact, the flight test campaign has been progressing at full pace, with the first 92 flight test hours already completed since the maiden flight.

During these 92 hours, ten Airbus experimental test pilots have flown the first A350 (MSN1) and collectively put the aircraft through its paces to get to know its handling qualities and behaviour.

This early phase of test flights has resulted in the clearance of the entire flight envelope and initial testing of all key systems.

These include: engines, electrics, Ram Air Turbine (RAT), landing gear and braking, fuel and cabin pressurization, as well as a preliminary assessment of the autopilot and auto-land functions.

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The A350 MSN1 will now undergo routine maintenance and upgrades of its flight test installation to ready it for the second phase of the flight test campaign which will start in August, while the design office will analyse the results of these initial flight tests.

So watch this space, as there’s still a lot to come with the A350 XWB flight test campaign. In total, around 2,500 flight hours will be completed with a fleet of five development aircraft.

To date, Airbus has recorded 678 firm orders for the A350 XWB from 34 customers worldwide. Entry into commercial service of the first customer aircraft is scheduled for the second half of 2014.

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