MIAMI — The Bombardier CSeries nears its approval for operations at London City Airport (LCY), after completing a series of demonstration flights during the last week.
According to a statement, the Canadian airframer completed a series of eight flights, intended to demonstrate the capabilities of the CS100 for operations to and from LCY, including the steep approach procedure and short runway performance.
“The aircraft smoothly performed all eight take-offs and landings during a two-day period, as planned,” said Rob Dewar, Vice President, C Series Aircraft Program, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft. “The aircraft is meeting all performance expectations and clearly demonstrates that it is the best performing and most efficient aircraft in the 100- to 150-seat class.”
Since its first flight in September 2013, the program has faced technical difficulties, budget overruns and financial woes. However, in 2016, the orders of Delta Air Lines and Air Canad, together with the $1 billion partnership from the Government of Quebec have brought the program to strike back in a highly competitive market.
Bombardier claims that the CSeries was created for noise-sensitive airports surrounded by urban developments. Dewar says that the aircraft was devised having LCY operations as one of its main design guidelines.
“It has been a pleasure to welcome the Bombardier CS100 aircraft and its team to London City Airport for the first time, as part of their testing and evaluation process. Following the landmark C Series non-stop flight to JFK, we look forward to the completion of its regulatory certification, followed by entry into commercial passenger operation with SWISS,” said the CEO of London City Airport, Declean Collier.
Transport Canada and EASA certifications for steep approach operations with the CS100 aircraft are expected in the second quarter of 2017.
The certification would allow CSeries customer SWISS to operate at London City, which is a four-mile drive from the UK capital’s main financial district, and it would also open possibilities to place further orders with regional and main line operators such as IAG, which is rumored to place a major aircraft order for Aer Lingus and British Airways.