Flight test A350 XWB opens its doors

As part of the A350 XWB Customer Definition Centre opening event in Hamburg, Airbus unveiled the A350 XWB’s first development cabin interior on board flight test aircraft MSN002.

7 April 2014 Feature story

Since its maiden flight on 26 February 2014, the aircraft has completed 76 flight hours over a total of 12 flights. It is the first of two aircraft in the A350 XWB’s development fleet to be fitted with a cabin – which is equipped with a medium flight test installation to be used for testing all cabin-related systems. 

Intensive cabin flight and ground tests already have been performed on the aircraft since its arrival in Hamburg during mid-March. MSN002 also will be used for a partial evacuation test on the ground, as well as hot and cold cabin evaluations.

MSN002 will be the first A350 XWB to carry real passengers when it makes a series of “early long flights,” during which the aircraft’s cabin systems and features can be tested in the air. It will soon be joined by the second cabin-equipped A350 XWB, MSN005, which is to perform a series of route-proving flights around the world.

The new interior showcases the widebody aircraft’s extra wide 221-inch internal cabin cross-section, along with just some of the features that will characterise the in-service jetliner. The final aircraft is set to include the very latest inflight entertainment consoles, and will offer airlines exceptional flexibility and passenger comfort in all seat classes along with 18-inch seats in a nine-abreast economy configuration.

As of the end of March 2014, the A350 XWB has won 812 orders from 39 customers worldwide, and together the first four flight test aircraft have accumulated over 1,400 flight test hours – performed in more than 300 test flights. The first aircraft is due to enter commercial service with launch customer Qatar Airways later this year.

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