Cobalt Co50 Gets CMC Clout

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Canadian airframer Cobalt has selected CMC's SmartDeck integrated avionics for its $1 million, piston-powered Co50 Valkyrie.

The announcement would appear to add some clout to the innovative canard pusher's possibilities. The aircraft has not been in the news much since its introduction at Oshkosh in 2010, at the time, priced at $650,000.

CMC purchased the rights to SmartDeck from L-3 in 2010, which had originally developed the flight deck for the Cirrus SF50 Vision single-engine jet (before Cirrus opted for a Garmin flight deck). Since 2010, CMC has enhanced the platform, winning forward-fit positions for the Evektor EV-55 as well as the Cobalt.

For the Co50, the suite will include two 12 in primary flight and multi-function displays with dual ADAHRS and WAAS GPS, and a 6.5 in dedicated display for flight planning and radio management as well as an integrated digital autopilot and audio controller.

CMC says TAWS-B, TCAS/TAS, satellite weather, lightning detection and synthetic vision are also included, though Cobalt lists the features as options, along with a ballistic recovery chute.

Cobalt says the all-composite single will cruise at 250 knots at 25,000 feet and have a fully-loaded maximum range of 1,150 nm.

The company doesn't actually say how many people the Co50 will seat, though images on the website appear to peg it at four seats.

Also unclear is whether the Co50 has already taken flight for the first time.

CMC, in its press release, says the aircraft has finished high-speed taxi testing, but Cobalt reports that as of July 26 "the Co50 Valkyrie has begun its high-speed taxi and subsequent liftoff." The accompanying picture shows the Co50 almost airborne.

Regardless, Cobalt says to expect an 18-24 certification effort with Transport Canada to be underway after the initial phases of its development flight test program are complete.

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