Airbus has started joining the first 69-foot long front fuselage
section for the A350 XWB in Saint-Nazaire, France. This phase will
continue over the coming weeks, and once completed, the front
fuselage will be transported by Beluga to the A350 XWB Final
Assembly Line in Toulouse. It will be the first major section of
the A350 XWB to enter the final assembly line.
The front fuselage is destined for the A350 XWB static test
airframe – the first A350 XWB to be assembled. It will be
followed closely by the first “flyable” airframe for
MSN1, one of the five flight test aircraft Airbus will build.
The static airframe is used solely for ground tests that will
demonstrate the aircraft’s ability to sustain certification
loads and provide key data ahead of the first flight in 2013.