Piper’s prolonged pondering of a jet reached fruition at the NBAA Convention with an announcement today that it will design and build a very light jet with a “high-speed natural laminar flow wing” and powered by a single 2,400-pound-thrust turbofan. Piper plans to fly the PiperJet in spring 2008 and start deliveries in the first half of 2010.
Business Aviation » Business Aviation Aircraft
News and issues relating to business, aircraft, primarily turbine-engine powered airplanes and helicopters.
Cirrus Design will officially launch its single-engine CirrusJet this month at the NBAA Convention in Orlando. In a promotional mailing sent out this week, Cirrus said the very light jet will be able to cruise at more than 300 ktas, fly more than 1,000 nm and have a service ceiling of 25,000 feet.
On Saturday, Eclipse Aviation received FAA type certification for the Eclipse 500, nine months later than originally planned when the company announced in early 2003 that it would have to modify the design due to switching from the Williams EJ22 turbofan to the Pratt & Whitney Canada PW610F.
Piper Aircraft will reveal details of its next-generation aircraft, widely believed to be a single-engine very light jet, during the NBAA Convention next month in Orlando, Fla. Piper officials have said it will fall between the $2 million Meridian turboprop single and the approximately $4 million HondaJet.
Embraer today revealed the firm order backlog and production schedule for its business jets–the Phenom 100 and 300, Legacy 600 and Lineage 1000. "As of June 30, our executive jet firm order backlog stands at $1.25 billion," noted Embraer chairman, president and CEO Maurício Botelho. The company has logged firm orders for more than 235 Phenom 100 very light jets and Phenom 300 light jets since the duo was launched about a year ago, he said.
Sino Swearingen's SJ30 (nee SJ30-2) production-conforming test aircraft (S/N 5) with two pilots aboard this weekend established several speed and range records for a light jet during a two-leg flight from its headquarters in San Antonio to the Farnborough Air Show in England. On Saturday, the aircraft flew 2,230 nm in five hours from San Antonio to Goose Bay, Canada, landing with about 1.5 hours of fuel remaining.
The good news is that the single-engine Diamond D-Jet is getting a parachute recovery system from St. Paul, Minn.-based Ballistic Recovery Systems. But the bad news is that Diamond has raised the aircraft’s price from less than $1 million to $1.36 million, nudging the $1.5 million tag for the Eclipse 500 very light twinjet. The increase is due to the manufacturer including previously optional items as standard equipment.
The first half of this year saw considerably improved sales and deliveries of Citations compared with the first half of last year, according to second-quarter financial results released today by parent company Textron. Deliveries of 76 Citations in the second quarter brought first-half deliveries to 142 compared with 118 in the same period last year.
Honda announced this morning at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wis., that it will “enter the HondaJet into the growing very light jet market.” According to project leader and vice president of Honda R&D Americas Michimasa Fujino, Honda will establish a new U.S. company to produce the over-the-wing-engine twinjet in the U.S. Honda plans to certify the GE-Honda HF118-powered HondaJet in 2009 or 2010 under FAR Part 23.
Vern Raburn, president and CEO of Eclipse Aviation, was flanked by some 200 company employees this afternoon at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wis., to announce provisional FAA certification for the Eclipse 500. “We have proved all the naysayers wrong,” he said. This marks the first agency approval for a very light jet, though the current certification is with “significantly reduced avionics functionality,” according to Raburn.