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C919 expected to experience maiden flight in early 2017
   2017-01-07 10:07:25    People's Daily Online      Web Editor: Zhang Xu

Chinese-designed C919 rolls off assembly line in Shanghai, on November 2, 2015. [Photo: Xinhua]

China's first homegrown jumbo jet, the C919, is expected to have its maiden flight in the first quarter of 2017, according to Commercial Aircraft Corp. of China (COMAC), the manufacturer of the aircraft. The C919 was moved to the test flight center on Dec. 25, 2016.

The plane has gone through a series of tests after rolling off the assembly line in November 2015, including a systems integration test, static trials and onboard tests. Now the aircraft is ready for ground tests. An industry source said the plane's maiden flight is scheduled for February. However, the exact date has not yet been confirmed.

By now, the number of orders for the C919 has reached 570. During the Zhuhai Air Show last November, Shanghai-based China Eastern Airlines became the first company to receive the C919 model after signing a cooperative framework agreement with COMAC. China's SPDB Financial Leasing and CITIC Financial Leasing have respectively ordered 20 and 36 of the aircraft.

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