San Antonio, TX, USA – Sino Swearingen Aircraft Corporation (SSAC) announced today that the company has achieved the high speed dive test results for the Mmo Mach .83 by reaching required testing speeds of Mach .90 in a series of high speed dive tests.
The dive speed testing to Mach .90 is required to confirm the Mmo (Maximum Mach operating speed) of Mach .83 and to confirm that the aircraft does not encounter flutter at any operating speeds or safety margin speeds to Mach .90.
The speed tests to Mach .90 were flown by SSAC Project Test Pilot, John Siemens as left seat command pilot with second control pilots Erick Kinney and Tim Fitzgerald alternating flights and flight control as well as engineering duties in the right seat. The aircraft used is SSAC’s FAA conformed SJ30 twinjet S/N 0004, using Williams Rolls FJ44-2A engines with thrust output of 2,300 lbs each engine. On board were a number of sensing and recording devices including three airspeed indicators and three pitot airspeed sensors, one mounted on a boom on the nose of the aircraft. In addition, a state-of-the-art telemetry system was in place on the aircraft with real-time display in the mobile ground station of over 20 critical flight parameters on both strip chart records and computer workstations.
The flight test team performed an incredible number of tests that totaled over 60 hours of flight time and included 331 test points. The team performed the speed dive tests from altitudes starting as high as 45,000 ft finishing at 41,000 ft. and at 35,000 ft finishing at 28,000 ft as well as at low altitudes of 18,000 ft. Tests were accomplished with normal and aft CG configuration as well as with the yaw damper turned on and off. After flight testing was finished the company reports that it has passed the required speeds to Mach .90 dive testing to allow the SJ30 to be certified with a Mmo of Mach .83 with FAA certification projected to be finalized later in the year.
Dr. Carl L. Chen, CEO and President of SSAC stated: “This is an incredible milestone for Sino Swearingen Aircraft Corp and for the customers of the new SJ30 twinjet. The SJ30 is now solidly the world’s fastest light business jet in the 20,000 lbs and under category and is even faster than some medium and heavier twin jets. High cruise speed is exceptionally important in today’s high technology and fast paced world and the faster you travel the better. We can now say with confidence the SJ30 is an easy to fly, high performance Mach .83 (485 kts 560 mph) twinjet well on its way to becoming the fastest selling light business jet available. Customers now know that flying with a Mmo of Mach .83 they are just 40 mph short of 600 mph and they can fly with the confidence and assurance that SSAC test pilots have actually tested the SJ30 far beyond this capability with speeds up to Mach .90 and the aircraft has shown excellent handling qualities throughout the flight speed envelope.”
Dr. Chen continued. “The FAA, our flight test pilots and the entire team have performed a major feat and they are all to be congratulated at the highest level. This is a true dedicated and focused team to be proud of and we thank each and every one of them.”
The SJ30 test aircraft S/N 0004 was flown by John Siemens, SSAC Project Test Pilot. Mr. Siemens stated: “The SJ30 demonstrated excellent handling characteristics at high airspeeds and high Mach numbers. We test the SJ30 twinjet at airspeeds and Mach numbers far in excess of those ever encountered by our future customers. Even though they’ll never fly there, our customers can rest assured their airplanes have superb aerodynamics and safe handling qualities well beyond the normal operating envelope.”
Mr. Siemens added: “During the testing handling was excellent and above Mach .86 high speed buffet is very minor, stability and control is good and the airplane showed exemplary roll control at speeds up to .90Mach above 28,300 ft and 372 knots indicated (551 KTAS @ 28,300) below 28,300 ft. I was very impressed, especially considering the fact that the SJ30 has such a highly swept wing and conventional tube and cable actuated flight controls. Never before have I flight tested a jet that is so comfortable going so fast”.
Bob Kromer, Senior Manager of Flight Test and Flight Operations, said of the high speed flight achievement of the SJ30 flight test team.
“Achieving our flight test goal of demonstrating certifiable flight and structural characteristics at dive speeds of .90 Mach at altitudes above 28,000 feet and at 372 knots indicated below 28,000 feet will give future SJ30 customers an aircraft with superb performance capabilities. These demonstrated dive speeds will allow our customers to fly their jets with a normal operating envelope of .83Mach (Mmo) at higher altitudes and 320 KIAS (Vmo) at lower altitudes below 28,000 ft. That’s outstanding capability exceeding all jets in the SJ30’s class and many in higher priced markets.”
Mr. Kromer continued; “With this operating envelope, the SJ30 will fit perfectly into the high speed traffic flow with other jet aircraft, not only while enroute but during high speed descents as well. There is nothing worse for a jet pilot than to be asked to move aside or to a lower altitude for higher speed, overtaking traffic. With a .83Mach/320KIAS Mmo/Vmo, SJ30 owners will be the ones passing slower, less capable jets temporarily in front.”
Gene Comfort, Senior Vice President, International & Domestic Sales and Marketing stated today; “The SJ30 is an absolutely incredible aircraft value. It is now solidly the world’s fastest light business jet. Speed is virtually always at the top of the list when it comes to purchasing business jets and the SJ30 now provides the ultimate low cost, high speed, solution in the business jet world. The SJ30 high cruise of Mach .83 exceeds every business jet aircraft in the world up to $11 million. The extra speed on this aircraft is actually free as the price of the new SJ30 is one of the lowest in the light jet industry. This great value has not been ignored by our customers and most mention it is one of the top reasons for buying the new SJ30. I believe the SJ30 will become the worlds best selling light business jet and the incredible speed will be one of the reasons for its great success.”
Two FAA conformed SJ30 twinjet aircraft are currently in flight testing as often as seven days a week. Aircraft S/N 0003 is being used as the systems test aircraft on items such as pressurization, electrical, hydraulic and bleed air. The other aircraft S/N 0004 is the aerodynamics and performance test aircraft, flying tests determining minimum flight speeds and characteristics, stalls, measuring climb performance and determining the high Mach number cruise capabilities.
SSAC Aircraft Company is FAA certifying the new SJ30 in San Antonio , TX and has over 420 employees in 4 facilities totaling over 220,000 sq ft in the USA Coast To Coast. The Company continues advancing the FAA certification process with projected certification in the second half of next year (2005). The new Sino Swearingen SJ30 business jet is a high performance, long range, intercontinental, twinjet aircraft with an incredible 2,500 nm range and one of the highest cruise speeds in the industry at Mach .83 (486 kts, 560 mph). The SJ30 will operate at altitudes up to 49,000 feet and maintain a “Sea Level Cabin” to 41,000 ft with the best pressurization differential in the business jet world, 12 psi. The new SJ30 will be certified for single pilot operations. Sino Swearingen’s goal is to become the world’s leading aircraft producer by creating a family of cost-efficient, high performance, high-quality, superior technology, business jets. . Specifications are preliminary and subject to change.