Dassault last month spectacularly bridged the gap between virtual reality and reality when it unveiled the first assembled Falcon 7X business jet at its Bordeaux Mérignac factory in southwest France. The February 15 event highlighted the fully digital design and manufacturing processes (see page 50) of the 5,700-nm-range trijet.
Dassault Falcon 7X
The general aviation industry continued a strong recovery through third-quarter deliveries and billings, according to the General Aviation Manufacturers Association. New aircraft billings were up 19.7 percent, to $8.1 billion, in the first nine months of this year, while total deliveries of new GA airplanes increased 7.7 percent, to 1,928.
Pratt & Whitney Canada is striving to keep fuel burn on target for its PW307A engine, which will power the Dassault Falcon 7X. Based on results from the first series of engine flight tests, the Longueuil, Quebec-based manufacturer is confident it will avoid the fuel-consumption problem it had on the PW308C for the Falcon 2000EX.
Dassault reports that its engineers in France have completed bench testing and software loads of the fly-by-wire flight control system in the Falcon 7X. First flight of the airplane, the first purpose-built business jet with fly-by-wire controls, is expected by the end of March, according to Dassault, which plans to fly the real thing to the Paris Air Show in June.
Dassault Aviation has filed a lawsuit seeking $60 million from Honeywell International over delivery delays of the EASy flight deck, Dassault and Honeywell officials confirmed here at NBAA. The suit contends that Honeywell misled Dassault by claiming that the EASy integrated avionics system, which is based on the Honeywell Primus Epic platform, was ready when in fact it needed more time for development.
Dassault Aviation has reached a settlement with Honeywell over a $60 million lawsuit filed against the avionics manufacturer by the French business jet builder in October. The complaint stemmed from software integration delays with Honeywell’s Primus Epic avionics platform, the baseline system behind the EASy cockpits in the Falcon 900EX and 2000EX, as well as several in-development Falcons.
Dassault has locked in its decision to push the Falcon 7X’s range from 5,700 nm to 6,000 nm and boost payload by 50 percent. The design improvements to the trijet include the installation of additional fuel tanks, an increase in thrust for the Pratt & Whitney Canada 307A turbofans and incorporation of Dassault-designed winglets. After wind-tunnel testing early in the 7X program, winglets were rejected.
Dassault Falcon Jet’s Little Rock, Ark., completion center on December 12 accepted the first Falcon 7X (S/N 05) for completion. The world’s first purpose-built fly-by-wire business jet is slated for delivery to its European-based customer in the second quarter.
Dassault’s new Falcon 7X, which is making its public debut this week in Paris, will fly in this morning’s aerial display scheduled during the official visit of French President Jacques Chirac. The rest of the week the three-engine business jet will grace Dassault’s static display, but won’t fly again until Saturday for the general public and the airshow visit by French prime minister Dominique de Villepin.
Aerospace systems and services supplier Goodrich Corp. is celebrating a series of delivery firsts that highlight the group’s diversity in both products and application areas: