A Boeing spokesperson stated that the 777X encountered an issue during “final load testing” which subjects the plane to stresses beyond normal operational loads
New York: Even as it battles to rebound from the crisis surrounding the 737 MAX, Boeing seems to have suffered another setback as it suspended testing on its new long-haul 777X aircraft.
A Boeing spokesperson said that the team encountered an issue during “final load testing’.
Overseen by inspectors from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the "final load" tests are part of the aircraft certification process. During this part of testing, the plan is subjected to "loads and stresses well beyond normal operational loads," the spokesperson stated.
He added that the testing conditions were well beyond any load expected in commercial service.
Stating that the event is under review the spokesperson also said that team is working to understand the root cause of the issue
An AFP report quoted a source who spoke on condition of anonymity and said a door of the plane blew out during the test.
Such an occurrence is rare during final load testing, an industry source said.
The FAA investigates issues that come up during structural testing of aircraft, the agency reportedly said.
Boeing’s suspension of testing comes at a time when it is in the process of completing changes required by regulators and is making attempts to have the ban on the 737 MAX lifted, as the aircraft was grounded after two crashes that resulted in 346 deaths.
The 777X, was originally scheduled to take off on its first flight this summer but, due to problems with its General Electric engine, that date was postponed to early 2020 by Boeing.
Meany airlines, including Emirates, have ordered the aircraft, which is meant to compete with the A350 of European manufacturer Airbus.
The 777X has the capacity to carry 400 to 425 passengers.
With PTI inputs
Last Updated 1:21 PM IST