Airbus A350 conducts RTO tests

written by australianaviation.com.au | July 23, 2014
The A350 comes to a halt after the MERTO braking test. (Airbus)
The A350 comes to a halt after the MERTO braking test. (Airbus)

Airbus’A350 XWB MSN001 prototype has successfully conducted its Maximum Energy Rejected Take-Off (MERTO) tests.

Conducted at the French government’s Istres test facility near Marseille on July 19, the MERTO tests were a follow-on from the previous ‘High Energy Rejected Take-Off’ (HERTO) tests conducted in May, and are a mandatory element of the aircraft’s certification process.

The MERTO saw the aircraft safely brought to a stop using only a worn set of aircraft brakes after a rejected take-off at high speed and high weight. The brakes are designed to absorb the kinetic energy of the aircraft, and they glow bright orange and reach a temperature of around 1,400 degrees C.

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Certification requirements mean the aircraft has to stay still for five minutes without any intervention by fire services after coming to the halt, during which time the tyres are deflated by fuses.

A close up view of the brakes glowing orange after the test. (Airbus)
A close up view of the A350’s brakes glowing orange after the test. (Airbus)

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