Learjet 85 Flight
Test Aircraft Fabrication Underway
By Eddy Metcalf
October 11, 2011 - Bombardier Aerospace announced that
production of its new Learjet 85 aircraft has officially
begun as the program successfully exited the Aircraft
Level Critical Design Review.
Development and production teams in Wichita, Kansas;
Montréal, Québec; Belfast, Northern Ireland; and
Querétaro, Mexico, are actively engaged in the
manufacturing validation phase.
“We have made solid progress,” said Ralph Acs, Vice
President and General Manager, Learjet, Bombardier
Business Aircraft. “Our manufacturing sites are ready,
production has begun, we have been successfully building
parts and we are ensuring that all quality standards are
met for the Learjet 85 aircraft’s entry into service in
The Querétaro site is operational with production tooling in place. To date, several test fuselages and key elements of the composite structure have been produced at the facility to validate the manufacturing and assembly processes. In addition, a full-length composite fuselage has been assembled, and production of the first flight test vehicle is underway.
Wichita, the first phase of expansion is complete and the site
is ready for the start of final assembly. Phase two of the
expansion plan, which includes building a new production flight
facility, is scheduled to begin in 2012, while phase three - the
paint facility and new delivery center is on track to be
completed in 2013.
of wing spars and planks using Resin Transfer Infusion (RTI)
technology was successfully launched at the Belfast site in
spring 2011. Several sets of spars are now complete, and
shipments to the Querétaro site, where wing assembly will take
place, have begun.
As part of
Bombardier’s technology readiness program, over 12,000 test
pieces have been produced to date. The first Federal Aviation
Authority (FAA) structural certification test project was
successfully completed this summer.
True to its
legendary heritage, the Learjet 85 aircraft is set to deliver the
extraordinary performance, superior technology and exceptional value
Learjet aircraft owners expect. The jet is powered by two Pratt &
Whitney Canada PW307B engines, each boasting 6,100 pounds of take-off
thrust at sea level 86ºF (30ºC) and low noise levels, while the advanced
low NOx emission combustor offers reduced environmental impact. The
aircraft targets a high-speed cruise of Mach 0.82 and a transcontinental
range of up to 3,000 nautical miles (5,556 km).
The Learjet 85
aircraft flight deck combines advanced technology with superior design
elements for a cockpit environment unlike any other midsize jet. The
latest in technological advancements and superior design aesthetics from
Bombardier’s Global Vision flight deck are carried over in order to
create the ultimate Learjet aircraft flight control environment.
customized version Cabin Management System, developed by Lufthansa
Technik, will feature a high-capacity Ethernet network with a digital
amplifier to feed the high-fidelity speaker system and an interface to
support the aircraft cabin environment, including lighting and
temperature control. The system’s open architecture also allows for easy
integration of third-party equipment and new applications, such as
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