Boeing finished the flight-test program for certification of the new 747-8 Freighter yesterday, the company announced this afternoon. Flight test airplane RC522 completed testing of the flight management computer (FMC) and RC523 concluded function and reliability testing. Both GE GEnx-2B-powered airplanes landed at Paine Field in Everett, Wash., following their final test flights.
The U.S. Navy stepped closer to the first carrier landing of an autonomous, unmanned aircraft following the July 2 carrier touchdown of a manned F/A-18D surrogate aircraft. It is equipped with the same avionics and software planned for the Northrop Grumman X-47B unmanned combat air system demonstration (UCAS-D) aircraft.
Gulfstream has resumed test flying its G650, and two of the aircraft are now flying as part of the flight-test program. The program was suspended after the fatal April crash of one of the aircraft engaged in certification test flights.
Honda Aircraft recently achieved new milestones during flight testing of the first conforming HondaJet (F1), which reached a maximum speed of 425 ktas, rate of climb of 3,990 fpm and maximum operating altitude of 43,000 feet. Powered by two GE Honda HF120 turbofans, the $4.5 million HondaJet is scheduled to enter service in the third quarter of next year. The next HondaJet to fly will be F2, and this is the third conforming jet.
Eurocopter’s compound helicopter demonstrator, the X3, reached 232 ktas, above the stated goal of 220 knots, last month. This speed was maintained “for several minutes” in “stable, level flight.” The aircraft had taken off from Istres flight test center in southeast France, near the manufacturer’s Marignane headquarters.
As the investigation into the cause of the fatal crash of a Gulfstream G650 during an April test flight continues, company officials acknowledge there will likely be some certification delays for the large cabin jet, but they have confidence that the inquiry will conclude soon enough to allow it to complete the FAA certification program this year.
Gulfstream Aerospace resumed flying the G650 on Saturday, nearly two months after suspending the flight-test program following an April 2 fatal accident involving G650 S/N 6002. Senior experimental test pilots Jake Howard and Tom Horne flew S/N 6001 on a one hour, 39 minute flight that originated and terminated at Savannah (Ga.) International Airport.
As the HondaJet enters the final phases of FAA and EASA certification, Honda Aircraft employees are preparing for volume production and first deliveries, scheduled to begin in the third quarter of 2012. The 263,400-sq-ft Honda Aircraft production facility in Greensboro, North Carolina, opened in April.
Today at EBACE, Honda Aircraft said it has achieved new milestones during flight testing of the first conforming HondaJet (F1), which has reached a maximum speed of 425 ktas, rate of climb of 3,990 fpm and maximum operating altitude of 43,000 feet. Powered by two GE Honda HF120 turbofans, the $4.5 million HondaJet is scheduled for entry into service in the third quarter of next year.
Gulfstream announced today that the second G250 flight-test aircraft, S/N 2002, successfully completed natural icing tests, bringing the super-midsize jet closer to its planned FAA and Israeli CAA certification later this year. The twinjet was flown from its home base in Tel Aviv, Israel, to Smyrna, Tenn., where it spent several weeks flying to the Great Lakes region to hunt for natural icing conditions aloft.