Eclipse Working Out Windshield, Engine Issues

 - September 22, 2010, 10:42 AM

Eclipse Aerospace announced that two campaigns to fix problems with the EA500 very light jet are bearing fruit. To meet FAA certification requirements, the EA500 requires a special chemical that has to be applied to the windshield to dissipate precipitation static. A modification replaces that cumbersome process, which has to be done every eight to 12 months, with a thin carbon strip bonded to the windshield and the airframe. The strip creates a conductive path, which acts as a diverter to “dissipate potential precipitation static under certain flight conditions.” A fix designed to solve the maximum pressure altitude limitation of 37,000 feet because of “several incidents of engine surge” of the jet’s Pratt & Whitney Canada PW610F-A engines is also in the works. Carbon buildup on the static vane during high bleed flow conditions caused the surge problem. The company is testing the modifications and expects certification by year-end. It will allow flight at the 41,000-foot maximum altitude for which the jet was originally designed. The cost is undetermined but will be covered under warranty for buyers of refurbished Total Eclipses.