French Firm Introduces High-Performance Pusher

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There haven't been a lot of new aircraft introduced at AirVenture Oshkosh in recent years but a French company says it will have the soon-to-be-flying prototype of its unconventional canarded pusher design at the big show. Cobalt Aircraft Industries will unveil the Co50 at a news conference at AirVenture July 28. The aircraft will compete in the high-performance piston single category and will be powered by a twin turbo TCM TSIOF-550-D2B mounted midships and turning a tail-mounted pusher prop. It predicts a 245-knot cruise at 25,000 feet on 25 gph and five-place configuration with a useful load of 1213 pounds. Empty weight of the composite airframe is 1,867 pounds and the tanks hold 109 U.S. gallons.

With the engine out of the way, drawings depict a spacious cabin with huge windows. The aircraft also has retractable gear and will have a leather interior. Price has not been disclosed. The project was begun in 2002 by Georgia Tech aerospace grad David Loury. The company says it intends to begin the certification process in the last half of 2010. The airplane on display at Oshkosh will be the flying prototype.