It has been rather a busy period for first flights.
On the 12th of November the Agusta Westland AW159 lynx Wildcat took it’s first flight at the company’s Yeovil site. The type will enter service in 2014/2015 with the Army (34) and Royal Navy (28)
The day after, at the Agusta Westland Vergiate plant, the first prototype AW149 tooks its first flight. The first helicopter will be followed by a second prototype in 2010 with the aim to achieve initial operational capability in 2014.
Half way around the world on the Woomera test range in Australia BAe flew the Mantis UAV for the first time, a joint technology demonstrator part funded by BAe and the MoD. This is an impressive performance, less than 2 years in development, the programme is maturing rapidly.
Finally, in a ‘nearly first flight’ the A400 has started engine testing in preparation for an expected first flight before the end of the year.