Saturday, December 20, 2008

First China-made regional jet ready for test

China's first self-developed regional jet ARJ21-700 is ready for trial flights as it passed national verification by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology on Thursday.

The plane, developed by the state-owned Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China, was assembled in Shanghai last December and completed its debut flight in the port city late November this year.

"It will take about one and a half years for ARJ21-700 to cover all the test flights necessary before entering the market," the company general manager Jin Zhuanglong said.

ARJ21-700 had already secured 208 orders both at home and abroad upon its debut flight last month.

The company would also pace up its research and development of ARJ-900 to build the country's regional jet into a series, according to Jin.

Regional jets are smaller inter-city planes with 50 to 110 seats and flight range between 600 and 1,200 kilometers. A standard ARJ-700 is designed with 78 seats and a maximum range of 3,700 km.

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