Cirrus announced Sunday that its Cirrus SF50 personal jet has been type certified and that deliveries will begin in December. The company made the announcement at a hastily arranged function two days after it received the FAA paperwork and two days before the National Business Aviation Association Convention in Orlando, Florida. CEO Dale Klapmeier told AVweb that the certification of the aircraft is the culmination of a huge effort that General Aviation Manufacturers Association CEO Pete Bunce called “impossible.”
“Well luckily we never believed it was impossible,” said Klapmeier. “It was just a lot of work.” The project was first announced in 2006 and was suspended for a time while the company dealt with financial and internal issues, but it resumed with an injection of cash from theChinaAviation Industry General Aircraft (CAIGA), a subsidiary of Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC). Among the issues Cirrus dealt with was the installation of a full-plane parachute. The FAA determined testing of the parachute system was not necessary for certification, but a video shown at the announcement shows the parachute being deployed from a Cirrus jet in an unmanned test. Expect more details and a video during our coverage of NBAA. In the meantime, here’s a video on the jet’s production from last year.