At the end of February I was in Montreal to cover the Bombardier CSeries CS300 first flight for Airways News. The bulk of my coverage for the event is over on AirwaysNews.com but I wanted to share a few other bits here as well given that I’m often more opinionated when writing for myself.
The plane is spectacularly quiet. I was amazed at how little noise there was as it passed by us out on the runway for its departure. The CR9 chase plane was noticeably louder and it is not a very loud plane. The company’s data says the CSeries is on par with the Q400s and even quieter in some test scenarios. That could be a significant game changer for both passenger comfort and regulatory issues.
Just how special is the First Flight event? Even employees who previously were barred from taking photos of the plane got into the action once the media was invited in with all our cameras. This particular guy stopping to grab a few shots quickly became one of my favorite photos from the event. That a Reuters photographer saw me getting the shot and ran over to get her own version of it was also a rather nice vote in favor of the composition.
Seeing the test rigs installed on planes is cool. The flight deck had a bunch of extra controls installed, all in the traditional bright orange. But even more impressive was the monitoring station inside the CS100 FTV5. All sorts of cool information on display there.
The flight deck of the CS100 is very big inside. LOTS of room up there for the pilots to work. To me it feels much more like an A320 family flight deck than a regional jet. The windows are the same size as what a Boeing 777 has. That’s huge for a plane this size.
Lots of space in the overhead bins for a regional jet. With the 2-3 seat layout and slightly wider fuselage than the EJets the bins can accommodate rolling carry-on bags wheels first, at least on the 3 side. That’s a nice touch.
Seeing an engine opened up is always cool!
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