Airbus (Toulouse, France) reports that its aerostructures partner Premium Aerotec has successfully assembled the first forward fuselage for the A350 XWB at Nordenham, Germany. The all-composite fuselage is 13m/42.7 ft long and comprises four panels and the floor grid. Structural assembly work will continue over the coming weeks before it is transported by boat to Airbus’ Hamburg site for systems installation. A photo of the forward fuselage section is pictured at right.
Airbus also reported that the first A350 XWB nose section has been unloaded from a Beluga transport aircraft at Airbus’ site in St. Nazaire, France. In previous weeks, Airbus has reported delivery of other A350 structures and sections as assembly of the first aircraft progresses. See link at right for report on wing upper cover.
In other Airbus news, Airbus Military reports that the A400M has completed a series of key tests and has moved closer to its civil and military type certification. These successful evaluations included the A400M’s high-energy rejected takeoff test in Toulouse, France, which confirmed the braking system’s ability to safely stop the aircraft following a rejected takeoff at high speed and high weight. In parallel, Airbus Military also conducted emergency evacuation tests in Seville, Spain, demonstrating that the airlifter can safely be evacuated in a specified time when loaded with troops or other passengers.