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U.S. Federal Aviation Administration and Boeing are preparing to begin a three-day certification test campaign for the 737 MAX starting today (29 June)
The FAA test pilots and technical test crew members will carryout three-day test campaign on a 737 MAX 7 outfitted with test equipment at Boeing Field near Seattle, Washington.
The 737MAX has been grounded since March 2019 after two fatal crashes in five months that killed 346 people in Ethiopia and Indonesia.
FAA test crew will evaluate Boeing’s proposed changes to the automated flight control system on the 737 MAX, which triggered the aircraft to go out of control and crash.
According to Reuters, the test crew will run “methodically scripted mid-air scenarios such as steep-banking turns, progressing to more extreme maneuvers on a route primarily over Washington state. The plan over at least three days could include touch-and-go landings at the eastern Washington airport in Moses Lake, and a path over the Pacific Ocean coastline, adjusting the flight plan and timing as needed for weather and other factors,”
“Pilots will also intentionally trigger the reprogrammed stall-prevention software known as MCAS faulted in both crashes, and aerodynamic stall conditions,” Reuters reported.
However FAA said it “..has not made a decision on return to service” and has a number of additional steps before it can clear the plane to do so.