Sometimes I manage to come across the most random stories, while the Xtra large ones fly under the radar. A350-900 MSN3 has officially joined MSN1 in the sky on the A350 test programme after completing its maiden five hour long sortie earlier this week.

Both aircraft are fitted with a heavy flight test instrumentation package and will continue to be used for aircraft aeroelasticity, handling and performance testing. Since it’s first flight in June MSN1 has accumulated 330 flight test hours devoted to the identification and freeze of all flap and slat configurations, loads and aeroelastic testing and evaluation of the aircraft’s handling characteristics and systems’ operation throughout the operational envelope.

MSN2 – the third of five – the first test aircraft to be fitted with a full passenger cabin and a new livery, will join the flight test campaign in early 2014. I expect with the same equally stunning results.

More pictures here, here, and if you haven’t had enough, here.