In a highly significant boost, Boeing has received clearance, in the form of type inspection authorization, from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to begin certification flight testing of its 737 MAX 10 jet.
This means that FAA pilots will finally step on board the largest MAX family aircraft to conduct tests and gather critical flight data.
In an internal memo, seen by the Seatle Times, Boeing’s Vice President, Mike Fleming, celebrated the development with staff.
“This is a significant milestone as we work to get the 737-10, the largest airplane in the 737 MAX family, certified to enter passenger service with operators around the world,” Fleming wrote.
The process for certification of the 737-10, and its smaller family member the 737-7, has been particularly long due to new regulations introduced after the MAX 8 crashes in October 2018 and March 2019.
In a post on social media, Boeing wrote: “The 737-10 has been cleared by the FAA to begin certification flight testing, a significant milestone as we work to get the airplane certified to enter passenger service.”
Stock markets also responded positively to the news which was confirmed on November 22, 2023.
Boeing hopes that the knowledge it has gained from the ongoing certification of the MAX 7, which is further along in the process, will help in the coming stages for the MAX 10.
The MAX 10 is not expected to be certified until late 2024 and is not thought to enter service until 2025.