Textron Aviation’s flagship Cessna Citation X+, currently the fastest civil aircraft, landed yesterday at TAG Farnborough Airport after a short flight from Paris Le Bourget. On Friday, the X+ crossed the Atlantic, flying 2,788 nm from Presque Isle, Maine, to Paris in five hours 33 minutes, averaging 502 knots groundspeed and burning 10,600 pounds of fuel.
Business Aviation » Business Aviation Aircraft
News and issues relating to business, aircraft, primarily turbine-engine powered airplanes and helicopters.
Among the debutantes at this year’s Farnborough Airshow is the Piaggio Aero Avanti EVO, the third generation of this eye-catching twin-turboprop business aircraft. The program was first revealed in May at the EBACE convention in Geneva, but the Avanti EVO’s appearance here is its first public outing at a major airshow.
Pilatus is to roll out the first example of its PC-24 business jet on August 1, just over a year after launching the model in May 2013. The aircraft is expected to make its first flight by year-end en route to European and U.S. certification in early 2017.
Cessna has regained the title of fastest civil aircraft with yesterday’s receipt of the FAA type certificate for the upgraded Citation X+ and today’s delivery of the first customer aircraft. The midsize Citation X+ has a verified maximum speed of Mach 0.935 (617 mph/536 ktas), besting the Gulfstream G650’s Mach 0.925.
Cessna started full assembly-line flow on the Citation Latitude at its manufacturing facilities in Wichita, the company announced yesterday. Assembly of the midsize business jet includes several technological advancements, according to Cessna, such as the use of new automated robotics and ergonomically friendly tooling stations.
After moving the partially built components of the all-composite, single-engine Privateer amphibian to Comp Air Aviation in Titusville, Fla. for final assembly, Comp Air technicians have put together major portions of the airframe. In the past three months, the Comp Air team has installed the wings and center section on the fuselage, then attached that assembly to the floats. “The horizontal stabilizer and elevator are complete and ready for control system integration,” according to Comp Air. First flight of the 714-hp Walter 601-powered amphibian is planned in the fourth quarter.
The team that is working to bring the amphibious Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6-powered Turbine Mallard into production has been traveling globally to talk to potential customers and possible manufacturing partners, according to general manager Sam Jantzen. “We currently have some interest from manufacturers and from other investment groups to partner in this project,” he told AIN.
Gulfstream Aerospace is boosting the range potential of its G650 flagship with the launch of an ER extended-range version. At an EBACE press conference on May 19, Gulfstream president Larry Flynn said that the G650’s already lengthy range figure of 7,000 nm will grow to 7,500 nm at Mach 0.85, which will make it the longest-range business jet when it receives certification. Alternatively, the ER version can reach out a further 400 nm beyond the baseline G650 to fly 6,400 nm at Mach0.90.
Gulfstream (Booth 5129) filed a patent this week for a new undercarriage arrangement that significantly reduces the amount of noise created when the aircraft flies with the landing gear deployed. As engines have become ever quieter, the aerodynamic noise created by disturbed airflow around the aircraft itself makes up an increasing proportion of the overall noise signature. In landing configuration one of the biggest culprits is the landing gear, and the nosewheel in particular.
There is good news and bad news for Rhineland Air Service (RAS), the Daher-Socata TBM distributor for Germany and Austria. The good news is that Badenwings, a corporate aircraft operator in Germany, stopped by Daher-Socata’s EBACE exhibit (Booth 6540) on Tuesday and unexpectedly signed for a new TBM 900. However, the aircraft that Badenwings will be taking–S/N 1005–was originally slotted to be delivered next week to RAS as a demonstration aircraft, so the distributor will now have to wait until later in the year to get another demo TBM 900.