Airbus is relying on an "iron bird" to test for issues with its A350 models. The iron bird is a hull of a plane that allows for mechanical tests of the aircraft, instead of relying solely on computer models. "We're good at analyzing things like the aerodynamics of structures, but when you get to very complicated systems it's hard for computers to predict the interactions ahead of time," said R. John Hansman, professor of aeronautics and astronautics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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