Demand for aircraft in the Asia Pacific region has become increasingly diverse, to the delight of Cessna senior vice president of sales and marketing Roger Whyte.
Cessna Citation X
In an exclusive interview with AIN, Aerion vice chairman Brian Barents discussed why he believes it’s time to bring a supersonic business jet to market. “People have approached the subject over a number of years, trying to marry technology with a guaranteed return on investment, without success,” he said.
With the Raytheon Hawker Horizon and Bombardier Continental making their first flights within three days of each other in Wichita last month, development is virtually neck and neck for these two highly competitive super-midsize business jets.
The Astreon series of solid-state LED wingtip position lights was among Honeywell’s bag of announcements at the convention. Developed to last 10 times longer than current position lights, the Astreon series will soon be tested aboard a Gulfstream 550. Honeywell’s warranty on the lights is for 3,000 hours or five years of service.
When the Citation Sovereign receives certification, expected before year-end, it will include modifications that reduce lateral control forces. According to Cessna, initial flight tests showed lateral forces at high speeds of 40 to 50 pounds for roll rates of less than 10 degrees per second.
Cessna Aircraft last month unveiled the Citation XLS, a faster and longer-legged derivative of the Citation Excel with a price tag of $9.895 million and described as “a logical step up for customers moving up from smaller light jets.”
The first test flights of a Cessna Citation X equipped with Winglet Technology’s new elliptical winglets are proceeding well, according to Bob Kiser, president of the Wichita-based modification kit manufacturer. The winglets are expected to give the airplane an even higher maximum cruise speed at high altitude as well as improved climb performance and longer range.
Bombardier’s Learjet 40 and 45XR were set to receive UK Civil Aviation Authority approval to operate into London City Airport (LCY) before the end of last month. Europe sales director Trevor Lambath told the EBAA Forum that a Learjet 45 completed validation flights at the downtown gateway during the second week of last month.
In the fall, CAE SimuFlite is scheduled to have its first Citation X simulator ready for initial and recurrent pilot and mechanic training. The FAA level-D simulator, installed at SimuFlite’s Dallas facility, is equipped with a Honeywell SPZ-7600 digital autoflight control system, Universal UNS-1D flight management system with GPS, Enhanced GPWS, TCAS II and moving-map display.
As the business aviation industry awakens from its three-year slumber, start-up and established manufacturers hope that their aircraft now in the works, as well as those that recently received certification, will take sales revenue to new heights. While this list of new aircraft includes many derivatives, more than half of the proposed aircraft are actually clean-sheet designs.