The first ever visit of the Airbus A350 XWB took place on 10 April 2014, with test aircraft MSN3 landing and taking off from Cotswold Airport in Gloucestershire as part of routine certification flights.
At the controls of the plane was London-born test pilot Frank Chapman: “The A350 XWB has significant UK input, as the wings and fuel systems are designed at the Airbus facilities in Filton, Bristol and assembled at the company’s Broughton plant in North Wales – while the engines are made by Rolls-Royce in Derby and the landing gear by Messier-Bugatti-Dowty in Gloucestershire.”
The MSN3 is one of the four A350 test aircraft currently flying and undergoing rigorous testing in preparation for the A350’s certification and entry into service later this year. In total the A350 XWB flight test fleet will accumulate around 2,500 flight hours with a test fleet of five aircraft.
The A350 XWB is Airbus’ all-new mid-size product line will comprise three versions. At the end of March 2014, the A350 XWB totalled 812 orders from 39 customers.
- 2014.02.27: Airbus doubles A350 test fleet
- 2014.01.29: Into the cold: Airbus A350 XWB goes Canadian
- 2014.01.09: Airbus A350 XWB in Bolivia for high altitude tests
- 2014.01.03: Third A350 XWB rolls out
- 2013.10.14: Second A350 XWB joints tests
- 2013.11.06: Final Airbus A350 XWB test aircraft on assembly line