Falcon 8X Gets European Nod; U.S. FAA Approval Pending

 - June 27, 2016, 10:56 AM

Dassault’s flagship Falcon 8X has won EASA approval, with U.S. FAA certification to follow in the “coming weeks” and service entry early in the fourth quarter, the French aircraft manufacturer announced today. Derived from the Falcon 7X, the 6,450-nm 8X was unveiled at EBACE 2014 and first flew on Feb. 6, 2015.

“We’ve broken new ground with the 8X,” said Dassault Aviation chairman and CEO Eric Trappier. “Not only did we meet customer demand for an aircraft combining increased range and cabin volume with the technological prowess of the 7X, but we were able to get it to market fully mature and tested in a remarkably short period of time, and exactly within our production schedule.”

The three 8Xs used in the flight-test program are now being redeployed following the completion of the flight-test and certification campaign, which totaled more than 830 hours over 400 flights. S/N 01 will be used to certify Dassault’s FalconEye Combined Vision System (CVS) on the 8X and to gain approval for its use in dual head up display configuration. FalconEye, which blends synthetic and enhanced vision capabilities, and the dual HUD approvals are expected in the fourth quarter of this year and late next year, respectively, according to Dassault.

Meanwhile, 8X production is continuing to ramp up, with S/N 26 currently in final assembly at Dassault’s Mérignac production plant near Bordeaux. In addition, 12 Falcon 8Xs are already in cabin outfitting at the company’s Little Rock, Ark. completion facility.