Facebook Twitter 新浪微博 Instagram YouTube Sunday, Mar 12, 2017
Search
Archive
English>>

China's first large passenger aircraft C919 to make maiden flight soon

(CRI Online)    10:19, March 12, 2017

A C919 aircraft, the first Chinese-made large passenger plane, has entered the preparation phase for its maiden flight. [Photo: COMAC]

A C919 aircraft, the first Chinese-made large passenger plane, has entered the preparation phase for its maiden flight. [Photo: COMAC]

The C919 plane was developed by the Commercial Aircraft Corp. of China (COMAC). It is the first domestically-produced large passenger aircraft based on the latest international aviation standards.

The eyes of the world have been on the C919 since work on its development got underway in 2008. It's reported that, as of the end of last year, the aircraft already had 570 orders from 21 foreign and domestic customers.

C919 to make maiden flight in the first half of 2017

The C919 passenger jet was unveiled as it was rolled out from the final assembly line in Shanghai on Nov 2, 2015. [Photo: COMAC]

The C919 passenger jet was unveiled as it was rolled out from the final assembly line in Shanghai on Nov 2, 2015. [Photo: COMAC]

On November 2, 2015, the first C919 rolled off the production line in Shanghai. Since then, the plane has been undergoing a series of tests to lay a solid foundation for its maiden flight, according to Wu Guanghui, chief designer of C919 and COMAC deputy general manager.

However, the exact date for the C919's maiden flight has not been decided as yet. "I can only say that C919 has entered the stage of preparation for its first flight. But it still needs many tests including the 'sliding' emergency control tests, and after that a review meeting will be held before the plane's maiden flight," said Wu.

The C919 passenger jet was unveiled as it was rolled out from the final assembly line in Shanghai on Nov 2, 2015. [Photo: COMAC]

The C919 passenger jet was unveiled as it was rolled out from the final assembly line in Shanghai on Nov 2, 2015. [Photo: COMAC]

Meanwhile, it's been reported that the work of assembling the second and the third C919 has already started. According to staff members at COMAC, crew members of the C919 are familiarizing themselves with the control systems of the plane.

Comparisons between C919, Airbus320 and Boeing737

The C919, with over 150 seats and standard range of 4,075 kilometers, is expected to compete with the updated Airbus 320 and Boeing's new-generation 737, which currently dominate the market.

A C919 aircraft, the first Chinese-made large passenger plane, has entered the preparation phase for its maiden flight. [Photo: COMAC]

A C919 aircraft, the first Chinese-made large passenger plane, has entered the preparation phase for its maiden flight. [Photo: COMAC]

The following are some of the performance statistics about the three passenger planes.

A table shows the performance statistics of Airbus320, Boeing737 and C919. [Photo: Chinaplus]

A table shows the performance statistics of Airbus A320, Boeing737 and C919. [Photo: Chinaplus]

Based on the statistics above the gaps in performance between C919 and other popular passenger planes across the world are pretty small. Despite this, aviation industry insiders say the biggest question about the C919 is its safety, and more importantly, if safety problems can be resolved in time. A more sophisticated problem-solving mechanism will be needed after the successful maiden flight of the C919, experts added.

China's pursuit of its aircraft dream

An ARJ21-700 aircraft run by the Chengdu Airlines. [Photo: COMAC]

  An ARJ21-700 aircraft run by the Chengdu Airlines. [Photo: COMAC]

China developed its first large passenger aircraft, the Y-10, a four-engine narrow-body jet airliner in the 1970s. The plane, which could seat 149 passengers in economy, had a successful test flight on Sept. 26, 1980. Unfortunately, the project was canceled in 1985 for viability and budgetary reasons.

China resumed the pursuit of its aircraft dream in 2008 when COMAC produced the ARJ21-700 regional jet, China's first airliner independently designed in accordance with international standards.

An ARJ21-700 aircraft run by the Chengdu Airlines. [Photo: COMAC]

  An ARJ21-700 aircraft run by the Chengdu Airlines. [Photo: COMAC]

The delivery of the first ARJ21 to Chengdu Airlines for commercial operation on June 28, 2016, was a milestone for the Chinese aviation industry. So far, there are two ARJ21-700 jets in commercial operation between Shanghai and southwest China's Chengdu.

A C919 aircraft, the first Chinese-made large passenger plane, has entered the preparation phase for its maiden flight. [Photo: COMAC]

A C919 aircraft, the first Chinese-made large passenger plane, has entered the preparation phase for its maiden flight. [Photo: COMAC]

As for the C919, Wu Guanghui said he has great confidence in it and is willing to be the first person aboard.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Kou Jie, Bianji)

Add your comment

We Recommend

Most Read

Key Words