Speaking to a gathering of reporters Tuesday at the Regional Airline Association Convention in St. Louis, Mitsubishi Aircraft head of marketing Hideyuki Kamiya reported “good progress” on the now six-year-old Mitsubishi Regional Jet program. Now scheduled for first flight in 2015 and first delivery to Japan’s All Nippon Airways in the second quarter of 2017, the MRJ has progressed to the point where managers expect delivery of the first test aircraft’s initial Pratt & Whitney PW1217G by the end of this month, said Kamiya.
Boeing likes to refer to “discipline” when it describes the approach it has taken with the 787-9, discipline in defining the firm configuration of the airplane and discipline related to the program’s engineering plan.
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries on Wednesday transferred the Mitsubishi Regional Jet’s static strength test article from the final assembly factory—the Komaki South plant of MHI’s Nagoya Aerospace Systems Works in Aichi Prefecture—to the strength test station, where preparations have begun to start the program’s static trials this summer.
Sikorsky is proceeding with the second phase of flight-testing for its Sara demonstrator, an S-76 fitted with special equipment to expand operational automation.
The AgustaWestland AW609 civil tiltrotor achieved another milestone on the road to certification, recently completing autorotation testing at the company’s facility in Arlington, Texas. Over the course of 10 flight hours in March and early this month, an AW609 test aircraft made more than 70 power-off conversions from airplane to helicopter mode.
Cirrus Aircraft’s first production conforming Vision SF50 very light jet, dubbed “C-Zero” (C0), achieved its maiden flight last month from Duluth International Airport, where the company has its headquarters. V1–a nonconforming SF50 prototype of the all-composite, single-engine jet–has been flying July 3, 2008.
The Bombardier Learjet 85 successfully completed its maiden flight yesterday, marking the beginning of the all-composite midsize jet’s flight-test program. Flight-test vehicle one (FTV1) lifted off from Wichita Mid Continent International Airport yesterday at 8:19 a.m. CST.
Cirrus Aircraft’s first conforming Vision SF50, dubbed “C-Zero” (C0), made its maiden flight yesterday from Duluth International Airport, where the company has its headquarters. V1–a non-conforming prototype of the all-composite SF50 single-engine jet–has been flying since July 3, 2008. C0, the first of three conforming flight-test aircraft, was assembled from production-ready drawings, tooling and manufacturing processes, according to Cirrus.
Cessna Aircraft’s Citation Latitude prototype has already achieved its full performance envelope, just one week after the aircraft’s maiden flight. In only its third flight, the prototype reached its maximum speed of 440 ktas/Mach 0.80 and altitude of 45,000 feet. In fact, the midsize twinjet made a direct climb to 45,000 feet with a gross takeoff weight of 29,000 pounds.
AgustaWestland (AW) performed customer demo flights aboard its prototype tiltrotor AW609 here at Heli-Expo in Anaheim, but with the aircraft still early in the certification process, few potential customers qualified to get on board. The FAA requires such passengers to be appropriately rated rotorcraft pilots, undergo simulator training in the company’s AW609 simulator, conduct a familiarization flight in the aircraft and receive a second-in-command rating. Two lucky attendees went through the process beforehand and took demo flights during the show, staged from Long Beach Airport.