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QinetiQ Flight Test Organisation

Flight Testing for over 100 years

QinetiQ and our predecessor organisations have been conducting flight test for over 100 years. Historically focused on military aircraft, QinetiQ has been instrumental in the test and evaluation of almost all aircraft operated by the UK armed forces, ranging from ‘British Army Aeroplane No 1’ in 1908 to the F-35B Lightning today. In addition to military aircraft, we are now also conducting flight test of civil aircraft.

Manned & Unmanned Teaming

QinetiQ holds Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) approval to conduct all categories of flight test on fixed and rotary wing aircraft. We also have authority to issue Permits to Fly under our CAA Part 21 approval. Our team of highly experienced and qualified flight test professionals have conducted the full range of flight test at locations throughout the world, where we’ve delivered numerous full aircraft test programmes. Whether it’s defining flight envelopes or conducting a single flight to evaluate a new modification, safety, efficiency and rapid delivery are at the heart of everything we do.

Modern aircraft fleet

QinetiQ has a modern fleet of instrumented aircraft available for customer development or test activities. We’re also happy to undertake test and evaluation activities on-board customer owned aircraft.

Rotary Wing
  • Leonardo AW139
  • Leonardo A109S
  • Airbus H145
  • Airbus H125

Fixed Wing
  • Avro RJ100
  • Avro RJ70
  • Pilatus PC-21
  • Diamond DA42
  • Grob 120TP
Free Fall Seeker Glide Vehicle

By day and by night

QinetiQ has been involved in Night Vision Imaging Systems (NVIS) including Night Vision Goggles (NVG) since their inception. Our Test Pilots and Flight Test Engineers have thousands of flying hours behind them, using and evaluating NVIS in the most demanding conditions. Combining our vast experience and facilities - including the Night Vision Systems Test House at MOD Boscombe Down - together with Civil Aviation Authority NVIS approved design and flight test organisations, we are proud to deliver certification and flight test solutions for NVIS in civil aircraft.

One Stop Shop

QinetiQ is a true ‘one stop shop’ for flight test, possessing the skills, experience and approval to deliver all aspects of a flight test programme. With considerable experience in the integration of COTS instrumentation systems into aircraft, the team also has a full design and manufacturing capability, which enables us to quickly and efficiently produce custom instrumentation if required, such as integration of instrumentation within a helicopter rotor head. We’re pleased to say that we also possess a wide range of ground based facilities to support flight test projects. This includes a telemetry ground station, whole aircraft and component environmental test facilities, anechoic chambers and a whole aircraft electromagnetic compatibility test facility. For more information on QinetiQ’s world class helicopter and aeroplane flight test capabilities, contact CUSTOMERCONTACT1@qinetiq.com.
One Stop Shop

Flight Test Capabilities

External modifications Flight testing to provide evidence to support certification and operation of aircraft with external modifications
Low visibility landing Testing of systems and development of techniques to allow landing in low visibility conditions including due to cloud, dust or snow
Ship Air Integration Development of techniques and operating limits for the landing of aircraft on ships
High altitude testing Testing to define the limits and techniques for take-off, landing and low speed operations at high density altitude
Envelope definition Flight test to define the flight envelope for new or modified rotary and fixed wing aircraft
Handling qualities Assessment of handling qualities to support certification requirements and operating limits
Systems integration and development Testing to support the integration and development of new and upgraded systems on helicopters and aeroplanes
Icing Flight testing in artificial and natural icing to support certification
Night Vision Imaging Systems (NVIS) Flight and ground testing of new and modified aircraft to support NVIS certification
Instrument flying Testing of systems and assessment of handling to support instrument flying certification