Bombardier has begun commissioning and activating systems on Aircraft 0, its iron bird systems validator which is part of its complete integrated aircraft systems test area (CIASTA) at its Mirabel, Quebec facility outside of Montreal.
Just prior to the Christmas holiday period at the end of 2011, Bombardier commissioned the first block of systems which included the aircraft’s flight deck pedestal, throttle quadrant and Full Digital Authority Engine Control (FADEC) software, which are connected to generators and dummy engines in the testing rig.
Aircraft 0 is split between two primary test areas in the CIASTA complex and represents a CS100 aircraft in systems but without any structure.
Bombardier plans to conduct 4,800 hours of testing on CIASTA for the CSeries initial certification, running a planned twenty hours per day, seven days per week. Four hours each day would be dedicated to maintenance and troubleshooting if necessary.
On one side of the facility, representing approximately 90% of the aircraft’s “hard” systems, is the Integrated Systems Test and Certification Rig (ISTCR), which includes production equivalent parts and software for the primary flight controls, hydraulics, avionics and electrics.
Bombardier plans to commission, during the first quarter, the company’s first fully fly-by-wire flight control systems, as well as all other systems in the ISTCR device.
The other side of the structure, accounting for 10% of the aircraft’s systems, Bombardier has built the Environmental Cabin Systems (ECS) to test the CSeries cabin heating, cooling, lighting, pressurisation and cabin management systems.
The ECS rig will be commissioned into service after the ISTCR as the cabin systems integration trials will come later in the aircraft’s program as the actual flight test program will fly the first cabin configuration on the fifth of five Flight Test Vehicles (FTV).
CIASTA also features an Engineering Simulator (ESIM) supplied by CAE, as well as a Systems Integration Test Stand (SITS) and Flight Controls Integration Lab (FCIL) near the ECS rig and cabin systems.
Bombardier plans to have CIASTA operate throughout the life of the CSeries programme to provide system maturity and to develop the aircraft’s capabilities over time.
The 110-seat CS100 is scheduled to enter service at the end of 2013, followed by the larger 130-seat CS300 in 2014.