Element Materials Technology has successfully gained approval to begin the testing phase of the hydrodynamic ditching for the COMAC C919.  Senior representatives of the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) and Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (COMAC) inspected the large scale model and test equipment, before witnessing the initial trial runs.

As part of its winning bid to deliver the hydrodynamic ditching test for the COMAC C919, experts from Element Warwick developed and implemented test programs, as well as designed and manufactured a scale model of the aircraft that was catapulted to land in a water tank as part of the two-test runs witnessed by the Chinese authorities. When completed, the test results will be reflected in the aeroplane flight manual as the recommended safety ditching procedure.  

The two successful test runs, conducted at the HR Wallingford facility in the UK, were witnessed by Shaolin Huang, Director of Structures Department and Aircraft Structural Strength Inspection Lead, Shan Chen, Director of Manufacture Department and Manufacturing Inspection Lead, Zhaodong Wang, Senior Structures Engineer from CAAC and Kecan Han, Associate Dean of COMAC’s Shanghai Aircraft Design and Research Institute.  Prior to conducting the test runs, the inspection team approved that the test equipment and test conditions adhered to the proposed test plan.

Kecan Han, Associate Dean of COMAC’s Shanghai Aircraft Design and Research Institute, commented: ‘’We are very pleased with how the inspection went and have the utmost confidence in Element’s test procedures. We believe that our cooperation with Element will make the C919 a safer aircraft and we look forward to finding new opportunities of working together in the future.’’

Rick Sluiters, EVP Aerospace, Element, commented: ‘’We are delighted with the successful test runs of the C919 model as witnessed by the CAAC and COMAC delegation. Our team at Element Warwick has extensive experience in the delivery of this industry-critical service, having previously provided hydrodynamic ditching tests for Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ) and the CASA CN-235.

We are one of a few laboratories globally with the capacity and capability to design and manufacture a scale model in-house, which is favored by certification authorities such as the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).‘’

Element Warwick is an Environmental Testing Center of Technical Excellence with UKAS accreditation to BS EN ISO/IEC 17025:2005. Areas of technical expertise include environmental testing, vibration & shock testing and engineering simulation.