M90 SpaceJet first flight to be held privately due to Coronavirus

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Mitsubishi Aircraft Corporation are not inviting media or guests to the first flight of its SpaceJet M90 regional jet because of the Coronavirus outbreak in Japan.

The SpaceJet M90 Flight Test Vehicle 10 (FTV10) was expected to be shown off by Mitsubishi Aircraft Corporation as it enters the final phase of certification flight testing over the coming months. The aircraft, which is at Nagoya Airport in Toyoyama, Aichi Prefecture, central Japan, was planned to enter-into-service this year but is now expected to be operational by early 2022.

The restriction to the scale of the event was made after the Japanese Government issued policies to attempt to control the disease at the end of February.

Mitsubishi Aircraft Corporation said in a statement, “From the viewpoint of preventing the spread of mass infection, we have decided not to hold an event or press conference on that day.

FTV10 is the first SpaceJet M90 produced in the new certifiable design and its first flight is a another significant milestone for the company and the aircraft development program.

Development of the SpaceJet, originally known as the Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ) started in 2008, when the aircraft was scheduled to enter-into-service during 2013. The latest nine-month postponement is the sixth time that the MRJ / SpaceJet, has been delayed after both technical and legal problems.

The MRJ was to be produced in 70-seat and 90-seat capacity versions, known as the MRJ70 and MRJ90. Last year Mitsubishi rebranded the regional jet aircraft family and reorganized the program, cancelling the 70-seat variant and replacing it with a 76-seat airplane called the SpaceJet M100. The SpaceJet M90 will seat up to 88 passengers.

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Ben has worked all of his career as a journalist and now editor, covering almost all aspects of technology, engineering and industry. In the last 20 years he has written on subjects from nuclear submarines and autonomous cars to future design and manufacturing technologies and commercial aviation. Latterly editor of a leading engineering magazine, he brings an eye for a great story and lots of experience to the team.

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