Spectrum Aeronautical has slowed development of the lightweight high-performance S.40 Freedom and S.33 Independence jets due to resource constraints. The company is developing the prototype S.40 at sister firm Rocky Mountain Composites in Spanish Fork, Utah.
Spectrum Aeronautical has delayed first flight of its S.40 Freedom lightweight midsize twinjet to late next year. Certification and entry-into-service should follow a year later.
The $6.795 million S.40 will be powered by GE Honda’s HF120 turbofan, which is slated for certification in early 2011.
Spectrum Aeronautical is preparing to manufacture a second S.40 test fuselage as it continues to refine its processes and manufacturing technology since completing the first demo fuselage in June.
Spectrum Aeronautical sister company Rocky Mountain Composites completed a test article version of the all-composite S.40 Freedom midsize jet fuselage at its Spanish Fork, Utah manufacturing facility. The fuselage manufacturing demonstrator (FMD) is the first of a series and was built as a single piece using co-cured carbon/polymer material, also known as the company’s FibeX process.
Spectrum Aeronautical sister company Rocky Mountain Composites has completed a test article version of the all-composite S.40 Freedom midsize jet fuselage at its Spanish Fork, Utah manufacturing facility. The fuselage manufacturing demonstrator (FMD) is the first of a series and was built as a single piece using co-cured carbon/polymer material, also known as the company’s FibeX process.
The FAA has issued a number of special conditions needed for Spectrum Aeronautical’s all-composite S.40 Freedom twinjet to achieve type certification. The issuance of special conditions is nothing unusual in any certification program. The regulations do not cover every design eventuality, and some special conditions are needed.
Spectrum Aeronautical’s all-composite S.40 Freedom light jet is subject to a number of special conditions mandated by the FAA to achieve type certification. These conditions cover many flight and performance characteristics, as well as new requirements for lithium main, auxiliary and emergency batteries.
Work is progressing on Spectrum Aeronautical’s all-composite S.40 Freedom midsize jet, but the first-flight dates have been pushed back, from a previously planned end-of-2008 to late 2009 or early 2010, according to director of sales Gary Bushouse. Even with the delays, the Freedom will likely be the next all-composite jet to take flight, now that the Grob SPn program has been halted.
Carlsbad, Calif.-based Spectrum Aeronautical won’t be exhibiting at the NBAA Convention next week in Orlando, Fla., but that doesn’t mean the would-be aircraft manufacturer has dropped or slowed its plans to develop an all-composite line of business jets.
Although Spectrum Aeronautical has decided to skip this year’s NBAA Convention, the all-composite S-40 Freedom midsize twinjet will still fly next year, according to company president Austin Blue.
The $6.2 million (2006 $) S-40 will be powered by a pair of GE Honda HF120 turbofans. The engine is expected to be certified next year as well. “We’re keeping track of the GE Honda engine development rather closely,” said Blue.
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