Initial A350 test aircraft reach 800h

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Airbus’s first pair of A350 prototypes have logged over 800h between them since the flight-test campaign began last June.

The aircraft, MSN1 and MSN3, have conducted nearly 200 flights.

Airbus is preparing to bring a third airframe into the test fleet – the cabin-equipped MSN2 – and will have five flying test aircraft in total for the 2,500h certification effort.

The airframer reaffirms that entry into service of the A350-900, with Qatar Airways, will take place in the fourth quarter of this year.

Airbus is conducting high-altitude testing with MSN3 at the Bolivian airports of La Paz and Cochabamba, to validate engine and auxiliary power unit capability as well as the A350’s take-off performance.

It adds that the tests will include simulated engine failure and an assessment of autopilot functions during landings and missed approaches.