Redding Aero launches Raisbeck EPIC Caravan

California-based Redding Aero Enterprises has become the launch customer for a Cessna Caravan 208B drag reduction package developed by Raisbeck Engineering.
The order for 11 drag reduction kits, which is subject to FAA supplemental type certification (STC) approval, will see initial deliveries begin in early 2022. Dubbed the EPIC Caravan, the modification includes a forward cargo pod fairing and dual aft body strakes.
“The Cessna Caravan 208B experiences a significant decrease in speed and an increase in fuel burn when equipped with the factory cargo pod. The new drag reduction system weighs in at 38 lbs. and perfectly addresses the market need to reduce drag and decrease fuel burn,” says Raisbeck. 
The kit eliminates the requirement for a cargo pod de-icing boot, and cuts the interference drag produced between the fixed nose leg and the cargo pod. Together with decreased drag from the dual aft body strakes the package provides the option to add up to 5 kts cruise speed at typical cruise power settings or reduce fuel flow and lower inlet turbine temperature by flying the same speed. 
The Seattle-based engine company says STC approval for the new drag reduction system is anticipated mid-December.

Guy Norris

Guy is a Senior Editor for Aviation Week, covering technology and propulsion. He is based in Colorado Springs.