Dassault Falcon Jet broke ground this week on an expansion and upgrade of its Little Rock, Ark. completion facility to accommodate the French airframer’s recently launched Falcon 5X and 8X. A 250,000-sq-ft hangar is part of the $60 million project, which adds production and completion space to the existing one million sq ft at the campus. Older hangars and the cabinet, upholstery and headliner shops will undergo a refurbishment.
FAA airworthiness directive AD 2014-16-21, effective October 2, will require operators of Dassault Falcon 7X trijets to replace certain pintle pins in the left- and right-hand main landing gear. The agency found that some pintle pins in the Messier-Bugatti-Dowty landing gear had been incorrectly corrosion-protected, which could cause them to shear under normal load and lead to collapse during takeoff or landing.
Dassault Aviation received orders for 38 Falcons in the first half of this year while delivering 25, CEO Eric Trappier announced on Friday in Paris. The orders were worth €1.6 billion ($2.2 billion), a 29-percent increase over the same period in 2013 and a continuous improvement since the first half of 2011.
Dassault continues to expand the Falcon series, launching the new ultra-long-range 8X at the EBACE show on May 19 just seven months after unveiling the 5X at last October’s NBAA Convention. The 8X is a derivative of the 7X trijet, introducing a longer fuselage and 6,450 nm range, a gain of about 500 nm on the 7X.
Ruag Aviation and Lausanne-based design house Yasava Solutions have joined forces to deliver an innovative design concept known as Astral. Intended for large-cabin business aircraft such as the Dassault Falcon 7X, Bombardier Globals and Embraer Lineage, Astral is currently being applied to a Global 6000. The cabin design, with an accent on 21st century luxury, is being showcased at EBACE at the Yasava exhibit (Booth 3439).
Opus Aeronautics is exhibiting a 2011 Falcon 7X on the EBACE static display that is for sale for $43.8 million. The aircraft has logged 660 hours, a modest flight time for a two-year-and-a-half old long-range business jet. The 7X has been on the market for just three weeks, the company said.
The Falcon 7X, registered M-INER, has had its cockpit upgraded to EASy II avionics and FANS capability. It is also equipped with a head-up display and enhanced vision system.
A Dassault Falcon 7X earlier this month set a speed record from New York Teterboro airport to London City (LCY) airport, cruising at Mach 0.88 for most of the 3,465-nm trip.
Following the launch of its aviation business in Turkey, Amac Aerospace announced that Dassault has appointed its facility at Ataturk International Airport, Istanbul, an authorized service center (ASC). Amac Aerospace Turkey achieved EASA Part 145 approval earlier this year to carry out line maintenance (including 4A+) on the Falcon 900 and 900EX/DX/LX EASy.
The company expects similar approvals for the Falcon 2000 and 2000EX EASy later in the summer, with Falcon 7X approval to follow by year-end.
Dassault is planning various improvements to the Falcon 7X that are to be available later this year, both for retrofit and for new production aircraft. The France-based manufacturer is also leveraging fleet experience to have its customers make the most of their aircraft.
Today at EBACE 2014, Dassault took the wraps off the Falcon 8X–a 7X derivative with a 3.6-foot-longer fuselage (at 42.6 feet) and 500 nm more range (at 6,450 nm). The flagship 8X, priced at approximately $58 million (10 percent more than the Falcon 7X), is expected to fly in the first quarter of next year. Certification is expected in mid-2016, with deliveries beginning in the second half of that year.
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