Toulouse - The assembly of the first A330-800 is complete, and the A330-900's flight test campaign is on track, Airbus said.
The European aircraft manufacturer made the update yesterday on February 1. Entered the final assembly line two months ago, the first A330-800 (MSN 1888) is structurally completed. The two Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines are ready to be installed.
Airbus has scheduled the first flight in mid-2018. The A330-800 will then join the A330neo test fleet, alongside the two A330-900s: the MSN1795, which made its first test flight on October 19, 2017, and the MSN1813 that flew on December 4, 2017. Both aircraft are fully operational and currently under flight test campaign. They accumulated more than 290 flying hours with more than 80 flights.
Flight tests confirm that the behavior of the aircraft is in line with expectations. During the tests, a lot has been accomplished,says Airbus.
The flight envelope was fully opened and the engines were calibrated at high and low speeds. The aircraft also underwent vibration (flutter) and stall tests. The autopilot tests have started, including the automatic landing. Climb and high-speed performances are currently being tested. Over the next three months, the two A330-900s will carry out different tests. The MSN1795 will conduct cold weather and sound measurement tests. The MSN1813 will undertake the icing tests and the first part of the hot weather performance test.
Airbus also reports that the production of the aircraft is progressing as planned. TAP Air Portugal, the launch company, expects its first A330-900 in the summer of 2018.