The fifth aircraft in Bombardier Aerospace’s Challenger 300 certification program joined the flight-test fleet on March 8 when it flew for the first time. Aircraft S/N 20-005 is being used for function and reliability testing of the twinjet’s corporate interior, including all cabin systems, water and waste management, lighting, environmental controls, passenger electronics and entertainment systems and ergonomics.
Interior certification is scheduled to follow aircraft type approval, clearing the way for the first group of the super-midsize business jets to enter service later this year, two to four months beyond Bombardier’s original schedule.
DeCrane is the key interior supplier for the Challenger 300 and S/N 20-005 features a single-compartment, optional divan configuration for seating eight passengers. There is a galley in the forward cabin and a lavatory aft of the seating area. The cabin measures 28.5 feet from the cockpit divider to the aft pressure bulkhead. At its widest and highest points, the interior measures 7.2 feet across and 6.2 feet in height. Cabin volume is 860 cu ft. Adjacent to the lavatory is a 106-cu-ft baggage compartment.
All club seats feature pull-out folding tables and 120-volt outlets. Cabin electronics include a CD/DVD player, two 18-inch monitors featuring Airshow 400 and a four-channel satcom system with two handsets and fax/data ports.
The Bombardier flight-test crew declared the first flight of S/N 20-005 as “uneventful, a trend that started with the first test aircraft and has continued since.” That’s not an altogether accurate statement. An inverter fire on February 4 in the first flight-test Challenger 300 is currently under investigation by the NTSB. The incident did not disrupt the program in any way, Bombardier said.