Comac has completed supplemental crosswind testing for the ARJ21-700 regional jet at Iceland’s Kevlavik International Airport, allowing the manufacturer to broaden the operating parameters of the aircraft as it prepares to enter full-scale production. The 78-seat jet has flown in revenue service since June 2016, but the lack of full crosswind certification has limited the airplane’s operating envelope. The original Chinese certification regime allowed the ARJ21 to land in crosswinds of 22 knots or less. Under the new limits, it may operate in crosswinds of up to 30 knots on takeoff and 27 knots during landing.
Comac worked with airframe and engine spare parts supply specialist AJW Group to coordinate and manage the testing program in Iceland.
Major aircraft manufacturers typically pick Keflavik to conduct crosswind testing due to the angle of the runway and the high winds in the region. AJW worked closely with Comac and Iceland’s airports authority, Isavia, since last September to manage the five-week testing program, which involved a delegation of more than 100 engineers, meteorologists, pilots, and support staff traveling from China to Iceland to carry out the trials. AJW coordinated the logistics, flight plan approvals, test flight assessments, and spares and maintenance support throughout the tests.