Mitsubishi Aircraft says that static strength tests conducted thus far have confirmed that its MRJ regional jet is structurally ready for a “safe first flight”.

Strength tests done so far include wing-up bending and fuselage pressurisation, says executive chief engineer Nobuo Kishi in a briefing with media in Nagoya.

The Japanese airframer announced earlier this week that the MRJ is set to take its first flight in the second half of October.

Kishi adds that the primary objective of the first flight will be to confirm the basic characteristics – ascent, descent, circling – of the jet. During the flight, movable parts of the aircraft such as its landing gear and flaps will be in a fixed position and the thrust reverser system will not be engaged.

Data gained during the flight will help the company expand the flight envelop.

FTA1 has undergone taxiing tests, while FTA2 has been doing ground vibration tests. Between July and August, modifications were also made according to test feedback, and technical data were checked, says Mitsubishi. The programme is using five flight test aircraft.

Mitsubishi has received firm orders for 223 MRJs, as well as options and purchase rights for a further 184 examples.

Source: Cirium Dashboard