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Dramatic images capture first Alabama-made Airbus A321’s inaugural flight

Airbus-First-Alabama-Takeoff

MOBILE, Alabama — The maiden flight of the first Alabama-made Airbus A321 lasted for less than four hours, but the dramatic images capturing the test mission will linger as a reminder of a pivotal moment in the future of the state’s aerospace sector.

Monday’s test flight from Mobile Aeroplex was designed to test the aircraft’s performance and systems, but its symbolic value was crystal clear.

“We’re building and flying now airplanes built in Mobile, Alabama,” Barry Eccleston, president of Airbus Americas, said after the A321 returned to Mobile Aeroplex.

“Airbus gives all Mobilians something that we can be very, very proud about,” Mayor Sandy Stimpson added.

Here’s a round-up of images from the maiden flight, courtesy of Airbus. (Get all the details from the test flight.)

The first Alabama-made A321, sporting JetBlue livery, cruises over Mobile on its initial test flight. (Image: Airwind via Airbus)
The first Alabama-made A321, sporting JetBlue livery, cruises over Mobile on its initial test flight. (Image: Airwind via Airbus)

The first Alabama-made A321 takes off for initial flight testing. (Image: Airbus)
The first Alabama-made A321 takes off for initial flight testing. (Image: Airbus)

The maiden flight of the first Alabama-made Airbus aircraft begins at Mobile Aeroplex, home to the company’s new $600 million production facility. (Image: Airwind via Airbus)
The maiden flight of the first Alabama-made Airbus aircraft begins at Mobile Aeroplex, home to the company’s new $600 million production facility. (Image: Airwind via Airbus)

The first Alabama-made Airbus A321 lifts off from the runway at Mobile Aeroplex to start the airplane’s initial test flight. (Image: Airwind via Airbus)
The first Alabama-made Airbus A321 lifts off from the runway at Mobile Aeroplex to start the airplane’s initial test flight. (Image: Airwind via Airbus)

A U.S. flag waves from the cockpit of the first Alabama-made Airbus A321 after the test pilots complete the plane’s maiden flight. (Image: Airwind via Airbus)
A U.S. flag waves from the cockpit of the first Alabama-made Airbus A321 after the test pilots complete the plane’s maiden flight. (Image: Airwind via Airbus)

 The test flight of the first Alabama-made Airbus lasted more than 3 hours. (Image: Airbus)

The test flight of the first Alabama-made Airbus lasted more than 3 hours. (Image: Airbus)

The flight crew of the JetBlue A321 pose for a picture after completing the plane’s initial flight test. (Image: Airwind via Airbus)
The flight crew of the JetBlue A321 pose for a picture after completing the plane’s initial flight test. (Image: Airwind via Airbus)

 The flight crew for the initial test flight pose in Mobile. (Image: Airwind via Airbus)

The flight crew for the initial test flight pose in Mobile. (Image: Airwind via Airbus)