Airbus has opened an A350 XWB Landing Gear
Systems Test Facility at its site in Filton in the UK.
Louis Gallois, chief executive officer of EADS,
Airbus’ parent company, and Sir Peter Westmacott, the UK
ambassador to France, opened the building, which is named after
Sir George White, the founder of the Bristol Aeroplane Company.
“Today we are not only opening an important new building,
but we are also celebrating a closer step to the reality of the
A350 XWB,” said Gallois. “This facility, and the employees inside
it, will play an important part in the integration of the landing
gear systems on the aircraft, which will fly around the world and
carry millions of passengers in its lifetime. I am proud that the
Airbus employees in the UK will play such an important role in
Construction of the €39m facility started
in January 2009. Inside there is a large bay that will house: the landing gear systems integrated rigs (LG0); an
avionics suite with test benches known as the Landing Gear Systems
Functional Integration Benches (FIB); a control room from which
all tests are co-ordinated; a parts store; and a dedicated viewing
area for visitors.
In line with Airbus’ environmental
requirements, this building uses innovative technology to reduce
the environmental footprint of the building. This includes natural
light and temperature monitoring systems which will ensure that
just the right amount of energy is used to heat and light the
Approximately 30 full-time employees will work in
the landing gear systems test facility when the rigs enter the
initial test phase in mid-2011. The Airbus site at Filton is
responsible for the specification, procurement, aircraft
integration and certification of all Airbus aircraft landing gear
and associated systems. The test facility will demonstrate the
maturity of the landing gear system, and provide evidence for the
certification of the landing gear and systems, especially the
extension-retraction and braking systems.
The A350 XWB (Xtra
Wide-Body) Family is an all-new mid-size long range product line
comprising three basic passenger versions seating between 270 and
350 passengers in typical three-class layouts. The A350 is scheduled
for entry-into-service in 2013.
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