Embraer Phenom 100 Passes Cold Test

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The Phenom 100 got a frosty reception on its first trip to the U.S. but that was the whole idea. The fourth prototype of the very light jet underwent the critical cold soak test at Florida's Elgin Air Force Base's climate laboratory last month and the company says it came through just fine. In the test, the aircraft is put in the cold chamber at -40 degrees for 12 hours and then engineers start the engines, light up the panel, open and close the door and a myriad of other tests to make sure it will function in extreme cold. The cold soak is part of the aircraft's "maturity campaign" which essentially gives the jet a real-life going over. Embraer says the jet's development remains on schedule.

Certification is slated for the second half of this year and the first delivery is expected shortly after. The first customer aircraft is almost on the assembly line. The other three prototypes have been put through extensive certification flight testing.