The Dassault Falcon 8X has completed its ground test campaign, preparing the way for a maiden flight in the first quarter of next year.
The 6,450 nm ultra-long range 8X was unveiled at the European Business Aviation Convention and Exhibit in Geneva last May. Powered by improved Pratt & Whitney Canada PW307D engines, it will build on the strengths of the fast-selling Falcon 7X, adding 500 nm to aircraft range and 3.5 ft to cabin length.
The extra cabin size will permit more than 30 different configurations, the most diverse selection of cabin layouts on the market.
Wing mating and engine installation operations on aircraft number one were completed at Dassault’s final assembly plant in Mérignac, near Bordeaux, in early July. The aircraft was powered up for the first time later shortly after. The initial ground test campaign, including fuel system and flight control system testing and vibration tests, was concluded in October. All systems performed as designed.
Engine run-up is planned for the end of the year, and first flight, later in the first quarter.
Three aircraft will be involved in the flight test and certification campaign, including one fully outfitted with an interior. Aircraft number two completed wing joining operations earlier this month and is due to fly in the second quarter.
Production of subsequent units have started and is proceeding as expected. Deliveries are scheduled to start in the second half of 2016.
“Thanks to the wealth of experience from the popular 7X – over 250 units have been produced to date – and the maturity of the digital processes put in place for its development and production, work on the 8X is quickly advancing, and reaching schedule milestones,” said Olivier Villa, Senior Vice President, Civil Aircraft, Dassault Aviation.