Results from wind tunnel tests validate CSeries design: Bombardier

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Bombardier is touting the final results of a wind tunnel test programme which it said further validates the CSeries' aerodynamic design, and supports the Canadian airframer's predictions that the 110/130-seat twinjet will deliver "a step-change in fuel efficiency".

Using over 20 sophisticated scale models, Bombardier conducted wind tunnel testing for more than 4,500 test hours at facilities in Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, the UK and the USA, representing the most extensive and complex wind tunnel testing the company has ever conducted.

The scale models were equipped with precise instrumentation to measure air flow, including as many as 700 pressure-sensitive ports over the wings, fuselage and tail. And the models included moving parts, such as wing flaps and leading edge slats, which could be repositioned to reflect actual flying events. Some models were equipped with miniature air-driven turbine engines to gauge the air flow interference with the aircraft wings, said Bombardier.

The largest of the models, at 13.7% scale, had a wingspan of approximately 4.5m (15 ft).

"Using the scale models and the environmental conditions possible in the wind tunnels, Bombardier engineers were able to simulate the aerodynamics of the CSeries aircraft in various flight scenarios such as landing, take-off and cruising at high altitudes," said the firm, which expects the CSeries family to offer a 15% cash operating cost advantage and a 20% fuel burn advantage over aircraft in its class.

"Simulated conditions during the wind tunnel tests closely correlate to real world flying conditions and the resulting data were used to improve and validate final CSeries aircraft design and systems," added David Tidd, vice president, CSeries integrated product development, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft.

Despite reports to the contrary, Bombardier told FlightglobalPro it is still eyeing a service entry of "late 2013" for its 110-seat CS100. The company has booked firm orders for a total of 133 CSeries aircraft, including 61 CS100 and 72 CS300 aircraft.