Airbus have successfully performed the ultimate load test of the A350 XWB’s wing in December 2013, applying loads up to 1.5 times higher than those the aircraft would ever encounter in its entire in-service life. At ultimate load, the A350 XWB wingtip deflection exceeds five metres.
This test was performed on the A350 XWB static test airframe that was built specifically to demonstrate the structural integrity of the airframe. The strains induced into the airframe are measured and monitored in real-time using more than ten thousand measurement channels. The huge volume of data recorded is analysed and correlated to the structural computer models which have been used to design the airframe
Airbus already passed the last of the ultimate load tests for the A350 XWB fuselage in early December 2013. These successful tests are important milestones for type certification and another step on the road entry into service of the A350 XWB in Q4 2014.