Eclipse Gets TIA, but Supplier Problem Looms

 - January 12, 2007, 3:52 AM

An ongoing “supplier problem” is casting a shadow over Eclipse Aviation’s receipt of its first type inspection authorization (TIA) from the FAA earlier this month. The TIA authorizes agency personnel to begin performing onboard aircraft testing of the Eclipse 500 for certification credit. But the supplier problem–which sources say is related to the avionics system–could delay the March certification target for Eclipse’s very light jet. Eclipse will meet with the unidentified vendor tomorrow in hopes of resolving the issue. At present, company president and CEO Vern Raburn is “70-percent sure” that the Eclipse 500 will be certified by the end of March, and “95-percent certain” that the approval will be achieved by mid-May. A spokesman told AIN that the troublesome supplier’s name would be revealed if no resolution was reached in this week’s meeting.