Late in making its Dubai show debut, the “extra wide body” A350 is already in service, the initial delivery to Qatar Airways having taken place on Dec. 22 last year. Airbus’ newest airliner is initially available in Series 900 form with typical (three-class) seating for 314 passengers. In prospect is the longer Series 1000, which is intended to cover 8,400 nm (15,556 km; 9,666 mi.) with, typically, 369 passengers. The “shrunk” Series 800 is no longer on offer, but Airbus has at least one taker for the ACJ350 executive jet.
AgustaWestland AW169 and AW189
These two new members of the AW139 helicopter family have different cabin sizes but are essentially the same thing, being optimized for roles including emergency medical services, search and rescue (SAR), law enforcement and onshore/offshore support. With its two large cabin windows, the 169 accommodates two pilots and between eight and 10 passengers, while its stablemate will take up to 16 passengers in a cabin with four side windows. In addition to the Italian production line, the family is also made in the U.S., UK and even Russia. British-built AW189s of Bristow Helicopters are in the process of replacing the RAF’s SAR Sea Kings.
The latest member of the Cessna Citation business jet family received its certificate from the Federal Aviation Administration in June and deliveries began during August, one of the first going to Aircraft Management Group Inc., in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. With its distinctive “curled-up” wingtips, the Latitude will carry up to nine passengers over 2,850 nm (5,278 km; 3,280 mi.) at speeds up to 446 kt. (826 km/hr.), employing a pair of Pratt & Whitney PW306D1 turbofans. Rumor has it that another new Cessna jet will be announced in Las Vegas next week.
Beechcraft AT-6 Ex-Wolverine
Despite its well-known shape, the AT-6 makes its debut in this particular configuration, having gained its wild animal name only at the Paris Air Show earlier this year. Before that, it was unofficially known as the Coyote, but it seems that the manufacturer has abandoned the name of Wolverine, too. Thus, the unnamed “AT-6 Light Attack” is a strengthened and improved version of the U.S. armed forces’ T-6 Texan, offered for commercial sale to cover a wide mission spectrum that includes training, manned Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) and light precision attack. Its capabilities have just been demonstrated in NATO exercise “Ample Strike” in the Czech Republic.
It looks familiar, because the An-158 100-seat airliner was shown at Dubai last time, but this is a very different airplane. The military gray color scheme is a clue, for this is a freighter equipped with a rear loading ramp. Typical payloads include three “Humvee” vehicles, 72 troops, 68 paratroops or 40 stretchers plus 30 walking wounded. Not that military use is exclusive: Volga-Dnepr freight airline provided design and marketing advice, and Antonov expects civil operators to order a significant number. Silkway of Azerbaijan has signed for 10 and there is talk of a possible Chinese production line. The prototype, here on show, first flew on May 7 this year and was initially shown at Paris the next month.
Bombardier C Series
First flown just over two years ago, the C Series began making itself better known to the public only in June of this year with a debut appearance at the Paris Air Show. Dubai is, therefore, only its second showing on the international circuit. That might have been different had the airliner’s certification program not been interrupted by a grounding order after a failure of its Pratt & Whitney PW1500G turbofan. Now playing catch-up against a background of company financial austerity, the C Series is flying in both CS100 and long-fuselage CS300 forms, seating between 108 and 160 passengers. The eventual outcome will be that operating airlines gain a 15% cash cost advantage and a 20% fuel burn reduction while receiving best airfield performance with a transcontinental range.
Now in production following its certification in Europe, the DA62 (developed as DA52-VII) can easily be confused with the better-known DA42. It has two diesel engines and is built mainly of composite materials, but the differences begin there, with seating for six adults – or five, plus two children in “family” layout. Maximum takeoff weight is 5,070 lb. (2,300 kg), except that European owners have the option of declaring 4,407 lb. (1,999 kg) to avoid air traffic control charges. Powerplant is the Austro Engine E4P-C (AE330) turbocharged, common-rail, 2.0-liter diesel, rated at 177 hp with MT three-blade, scimitar-shape, constant-speed propellers.
Embraer Lineage 1000E
New models don’t always give more. The “E” version of the Legacy 1000 large business jet is recognizable by the fact that some of its cabin windows, and one door, are removed. This helps differentiate it from the Embraer 190 airliner from which it is descended and also saves 500 lb. (227 kg) in weight – equivalent to another 200 nm (370 km) of range. For the crew, there’s optional autoland and the Embraer Enhanced Vision System (Rockwell Collins HGS-3500 with EVS-3000, including an infrared camera in the nose). Passengers get a cabin redesigned with five-zone interior with two rigid doors, new side ledges and tables (with veneer surfaces rather than hardwood), and redesigned lavatory and galley features.
Embraer Legacy 500
It was just a year ago that Embraer received certification for one of its two latest business jets and began deliveries. The Legacy 500 is the larger of a pair of aircraft launched together, both with the ambitious goal of bringing-fly-by-wire flight control to this sector of the executive aircraft market. After some tribulations, it has turned out well for the manufacturer and the smaller Legacy 450 has now also been certified (this August). With two Honeywell HTF7500E turbofans and a price ticket of about US$20 million, the Legacy 500 will accommodate two crew and between eight and 12 passengers. Range is in the region of 3,000 nm (5,556 km).
Embraer Super Tucano
The stretched version of the Tucano turboprop trainer has been around for two decades, although it was adopted by the home air force in Brazil as a light attack aircraft only in 2001. After this slow start, it has enjoyed orders from several Central and South American countries and more diverse contracts in Africa and the Far East. Much to Beechcraft’s chagrin, it was selected by the U.S. government for supply to Afghanistan, the aircraft assembled in Florida and pilots trained by the U.S. Air Force. Wing hardpoints are available for 133 different external stores configurations including machine gun pods, air-to-air missiles, rockets and bombs.
An “Extended Range” version of the established Gulfstream G650 was announced in May last year, some time after that aircraft was first shown in Dubai. Gulfstream moved quickly and the ER received its certification the following October. There’s no external difference between the two, and crew and passengers will notice nothing from the inside (unless they have paid the US$67 million invoice). However, range is increased by a very useful 500 nm (926 km) to 7,500 nm (13,890 km), thanks to an extra 4,000 lb. (1,814 kg) of fuel. Most cleverly, this has been squeezed into the existing wing tanks by modifying the fuel quantity management system and flight management system. Takeoff weight is correspondingly raised.
It's the Dubai debut for several new civil and military aircraft models.