Having experienced a heavy landing on August 24, the Airlander is being repaired and is on schedule to fly again in the early part of 2017. The damage was confined to the external structure of the cockpit, and a new structure is being built. Extensive testing of all aspects of the Airlander will continue throughout this period.
Over the past two months the team at Hybrid Air Vehicles has conducted a rigorous investigation into events that led to the heavy landing. These events are now well understood. Flight test by its nature encompasses risk and while the company, like all aircraft developers, runs robust processes to mitigate these risks, events such as this do occur.
Despite the hard landing at the end of flight two, the company is very encouraged by the capability of the aircraft demonstrated in its initial flight tests, and by the performance of all aircraft systems throughout all flight operations to date.
Airlander itself flew well, and this has been recognized by customers. The pilots were unhurt.
The first two flights of Airlander 10 demonstrated the capabilities and efficiencies of Airlander 10. The Airlander 10 can stay airborne for five days and carry up to 10 tonnes, without the need of runways.
November 2, 2016