Bombardier prepping fourth CSeries for flight tests

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Bombardier is preparing for the first flight of its fourth CSeries flight test aircraft (FTV-4), as the programme continues to rack up flight hours as it works towards final certification.

The flight test team took control of FTV-4 during the week of 5 May with the first flight expected to occur “soon”, says Rob Dewar, vice-president of the CSeries programme at Bombardier Commercial Aircraft, in a webcast at the Regional Airlines Association (RAA) convention in St. Louis today.

FTV-1, FTV-2 and FTV-3 have flown more than 100 times for more than 300 hours since the first flight in September 2013, he says. Recently completed tests include flight envelope altitude and speed extremes, hot and cold weather, and stall.

“We’ve had great results, very few issues,” says Dewar.

FTV-1 was recently outfitted with a ku-band antenna from Panasonic, which will be offered as a line-fit option on the aircraft, he says. Airlines will be able to provide in-flight global connectivity with the antenna.

Assembly of FTV-5 is “progressing” with it being the first to be outfitted with an interior, says Dewar.

The CSeries programme is on-track to achieve final certification and entry-into-service by the second half of 2015.