Eclipse Update: Landing Gear Delivered
Eclipse Aviation announced this week it had received the landing-gear assembly from Italy's Mecaer for its first certification flight test aircraft. That aircraft, N502EA, will feature Pratt & Whitney Canada (P&WC) PW610F engines and is on schedule to make its first flight in Q4 2004, the company said. Of the engines, Eclipse also announced this week that Pratt & Whitney Canada's PW610F turbofan has run for more than 25 hours in their test cell. Eclipse says the PW610F is on track to undergo flight trials on P&WC's flying test bed in August 2004, and deliveries of the first prototype engines to Eclipse are expected to begin in December. Finally, Eclipse said it has begun manufacturing of its three certification flight test aircraft, all of which will feature P&WC PW610F engines. Most of the cabin panels for N502EA have been assembled using friction stir welding, and are now being integrated into the full cabin assembly process. Friction stir welding of the cabin panels for the next two conforming flight test aircraft, N503EA and N504EA, has also begun. The Eclipse flight test and certification program encompasses a total of eight aircraft, according to Eclipse.