The first of five BelugaXL aircraft has landed at Toulouse-Blagnac, France, after successfully completing its first flight.
The test flight lasted four hours and 11 minutes.
The crew in the cockpit on board this flight comprised captain Christophe Cail, co-pilot Bernardo Saez-Benito Hernandez and test-flight engineer Jean Michel Pin.
Meanwhile, monitoring the aircraft systems and performance in real-time at the flight-test-engineer’s station were Laurent Lapierre and Philippe Foucault.
Following the first flight, the BelugaXL will undergo some 600 hours of flight test over ten months to achieve type certification and entry into service later in 2019.
The BelugaXL programme was launched in November 2014 to address Airbus’ transport capacity requirements in view of the A350 XWB ramp-up and single-aisle production rate increases.
Five aircraft will be built between 2019 and 2023 to gradually replace the five BelugaST.
The aircraft will operate from 11 destinations as Airbus’ method of transporting large aircraft components.
Based on an A330-200 Freighter, the BelugaXL is powered by Rolls Royce Trent 700 engines.
The lowered cockpit, the cargo bay structure and the rear-end and tail were newly developed jointly with suppliers, giving the aircraft its distinctive look.
The Airbus Beluga XL (Airbus A330-700L) is a large transport aircraft due to enter into service in 2019. ... The first BelugaXL rolled out of the assembly line on 4 January 2018, unpainted and with no engines. Fewer than 1,000 flight test hours are planned for its certification campaign. After fitting its engines, it will be ground tested for months to assess its systems operation, while bench ...
A link has been posted to your Facebook feed. Airbus completed the maiden flight of its massive new BelugaXL transport aircraft on Thursday, debuting the plane in front of a crowd of more than 10,000 near the company’s headquarters in Toulouse, France. Airbus’s oddly shaped jet – named for its ...
Pictured: Airbus's bizarre new giant cargo plane - the BelugaXL - takes to the skies for its maiden flight. The launch of the aircraft triggered thunderous applause in an audience of more than 10,000 people