Start-up Spectrum Aeronautical of Encinitas, Calif., joined the crowded very light jet segment last month when it unveiled a nine-seat, $3.65 million all-composite VLJ at the NBAA Convention. Managing director Linden Blue (known to many as the father of the Beech Starship) bills the 7,300-pound-mtow Spectrum 33–powered by a pair of Williams International FJ33 engines–as a “full-size airplane at half the weight.”
Aviation Technology Group’s Javelin twinjet prototype completed its maiden flight from Denver Centennial Airport on September 30. At 7:50 a.m. MST, ATG operations v-p and chief test pilot Robert Fuschino lifted off from Runway 17L at Centennial and flew the very light jet prototype for 35 minutes.
Look for a new single-engine jet to be unveiled at the NBAA Convention this month. Spectrum Aeronautical, based in Encinitas, Calif., and led by industry veteran (and father of the Beech Starship) Linden Blue, has taken a booth at the convention. Its product is the Model 33, a single-engine jet with composite construction. N322LA is the registration assigned to S/N 0001.
Diamond Aircraft in late June selected the Garmin G1000 integrated avionics system for its D-Jet, a very light jet powered by a single Williams FJ33-4 engine. The D-Jet’s flight deck will feature a three-panel G1000 system with two primary flight displays and a multifunction display.
Epic Aircraft parent company Aircraft Investor Resources (AIR) and Republic of Georgia-based Tbilisi Aviation Machine (TAM) in late July further cemented a joint venture announced last fall to build a $2 million very light jet (VLJ). Under the partnership, Epic Aircraft and TAM will co-produce the twinjet–Epic at its new 90,000-sq-ft Bend, Ore. facility and TAM at a plant in Tbilisi.
Diamond’s Williams FJ33-powered D-Jet didn’t fly as planned in October, but the first flight appears to be right around the corner. According to Diamond North American president Peter Mauer, the proof-of-concept D-Jet (S/N 001) is nearing completion at Diamond’s London, Ontario facility and will roll out next month.
Just two months after being unveiled at the NBAA Convention in November, the Spectrum 33 twinjet made a 10-minute first flight on January 7.
The dawn of the very light jet (VLJ) is nearly upon us, with the first, the Eclipse 500, set to receive FAA certification in June. Hot on the heels of the Eclipse VLJ is Cessna’s Citation Mustang and 10 other potential competitors.
The Diamond D-Jet (S/N 001) single-engine very light jet flew for the first time on April 18 from London International Airport in Ontario, Canada, home of Diamond’s North American division. The company said the one-hour six-minute flight “went according to plan, with the evaluation of 19 test points.” After takeoff at 5:08 p.m.
Excel-Jet’s four-seat, single-engine very light jet, the Sport-Jet, flew for the first time on May 14 from Colorado Springs Airport. According to company president and founder Bob Bornhofen, as of May 15, the Sport-Jet had logged nearly four hours.