Canadian authorities have approved the installation of a Max-Viz EVS-1000 enhanced vision system (EVS) aboard a Global Express. The U.S.-registered jet received the upgrade at ABC Completions in Montreal and gained Canadian approval in late December. An STC from the FAA covering the installation was expected by the end of last month.
Bombardier Global Express
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.
The second and final test Bombardier Global 5000 took its first, four-hour flight northwest of Toronto on January 8. During the inaugural flight it reached an altitude of 17,000 feet and an indicated airspeed of 340 knots.
Bombardier successfully completed wing mating on the first Global Express XRS at the company’s de Havilland facility in Toronto on November 9. Technicians from Bombardier and wing manufacturer Mitsubishi Heavy Industries reported no issues in joining the 94-foot-span wing to the fuselage of the first production airplane, S/N 9159. The wing is essentially the same as that on the Global Express, from which the XRS is derived.
Certification of the infrared enhanced vision system (EVS) for the Bombardier Global Express XRS–said to be “imminent” at press time–will close an important technology gap between Gulfstream and Bombardier, head-to-head competitors in the ultra-long-range business jet market.
Bombardier has closed its green completion center in Tucson, but it is still doing business aircraft interior refurbishment at its adjacent Tucson Service Center. In December, Bombardier and the Tucson Airport Authority reached a new lease agreement that allows start-up completion center DunnAir to gradually take possession of Bombardier’s former completion facility (see page 76).
Bombardier began shakedown flights January 16 of the first Global Express XRS, a longer-range successor to the Global Express. The first flight lasted slightly more than four hours.
Deliveries of the 6,150-nm-range twin-engine business jet (already approved under the same type certificate as its predecessor) are expected to begin in the first quarter of next year.
It’s one of those problems providers might like to see but that can be exasperating for their customers–more demand than capacity. The completion and refurbishment industry in the U.S. is struggling to keep up with demand as sales of new and used business aircraft continue to grow, and now Canadian shops are facing the same challenge.
Zurich-based charter company Comlux took possession last month of an Airbus A318 Elite, making it the first to operate the type. The aircraft will be outfitted with a VIP cabin that seats up to 18 passengers by Lufthansa Technik in Hamburg, which is due to deliver the completed aircraft this quarter. The Elite is a 4,000-nm-range jet intended to compete with the Gulfstream G550 and Global Express.
Midcoast Aviation, a long-time center for the green completion of highly individualized Bombardier business jet interiors, has secured another 48 positions, bringing to
90 the total number of aircraft scheduled for completion by 2012.