Comac Admits Further Delay With ARJ21
China’s Comac group has admitted it could take another “one or two years” complete certification of the already-delayed ARJ21 regional airliner. The 90-seater had been set to complete approval by the end of 2012, but Comac vice general manager Luo Ronghuai told local reporters at an Airshow China 2012 press conference in Zhuhai on November 13 that more time is now needed and this will push back the development of the group’s larger C919 narrowbody. At a November 12 press conference in Zhuhai, the state-backed company’s Avic division disclosed details of a recent emergency evacuation test witnessed by officials from both the Civil Aviation Administration of China and the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration. During the test, it took 57 seconds to evacuate 90 passengers and 4 crew from the ARJ21—significantly within the airworthiness requirement of 90 seconds. The manufacturer intends to certify the aircraft to FAA Part 23 standards. Originally, it had wanted to start deliveries in 2007, but this was then pushed back to 2011 and then to 2012.