Posted on: 22 December 2011 by Ross McSweeny
Mitsubishi Aircraft Corporation has announced that the hydraulic and flight control system rig test (known as the “iron bird”) for the MRJ (Mitsubishi Regional Jet) has successfully become ‘airborne’ following the beginning of operations in Nagoya.
The iron bird is one of most significant system integration testing instruments of the development process. Designed to test the manoeuvring functions of the MRJ, the iron bird consists of flight deck, hydraulic and flight control equipment, onboard software to be loaded on the actual aircraft, and simulation computers creating the all of flight environment. The testing is being conducted at the MRJ’s dedicated experiment building built within the Oye Plant in Nagoya of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, which is responsible for manufacturing and testing the MRJ as the major partner to Mitsubishi Aircraft Corporation.
The start of iron bird testing marks an important milestone and shows the steady progress of MRJ development toward flight tests.
The iron bird is able to conduct tests, such as intentional failure, that actual aircraft cannot. Manoeuvring tests using the iron bird will continue throughout the next three years to ensure the aircraft meets all the required safety specifications.