Thirteen years after its official unveiling by the Chinese government, the Avic J-10 fighter is making a surprise grand debut at the Singapore Airshow. Six J-10s belonging to the People’s Liberation Army’s Air Force’s Ba Yi (August 1st) aerobatics team landed in Singapore on Feb. 5. It was only then that the Singaporean government and airshow organizers announced the Ba Yi’s surprise appearance in the flying display. Chinese companies are banned from attending the airshow, but the display team received special approval from the Singaporean government, which noted the team’s daily medical checkups.
The “tiger face” E190-E2 twinjet airliner was a memorable feature of the static park at the last Singapore Airshow. This year’s observant visitors will realize that the fuselage length has grown to accommodate 136 seats in the 195-E2 – a variant that only entered service on Sept. 12, 2019, with Brazilian airline Azul, which has 51 on order. E2 is the current incarnation of E-Jet family, powered by a Pratt & Whitney geared turbofan engines for 25% less fuel consumption per seat, compared to the previous-generation E195.
Developed by Wisk, a joint venture start-up between Boeing and Kitty Hawk, the Cora electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) two-seat autonomous vehicle is powered by 12 boom-mounted independent lifting propellers for vertical flight. For forward flight it is supported by a 36-ft.-span wing and powered by an aft-mounted pusher propeller. All propellers are powered by a pack of lithium-iron batteries. The Cora has been approved by the New Zealand government to conduct passenger trials in Canterbury, a city in the nation’s South Island.
Based on the Bell 412EPI, the 412EPX was developed for Japan’s UH-X competition and will be assembled by Subaru at its Aerospace Company Utsunomiya Plant in Tochigi Prefecture north of Tokyo. The first prototype, seen here at the show, was built at Bell’s Mirabel, Quebec, facility and features a ruggedized transmission, and higher maximum gross weight capability. Japan requires 150 UH-Xs over 20 years to replace Bell UH-1Js, also built by Subaru, then called Fuji Heavy Industries.
Dassault Falcon 8X
Mere days after the fifth anniversary of its first flight, Dassault’s flagship business jet makes its debut at Singapore. The aircraft displayed here is the 56th of 57 built so far. The majority of those are based in Europe and the U.S.; according to publicly available data, only one 8X is presently based in Asia (it is under management with HK Bellawings, of Hong Kong). F-HDMO’s presence at the show may herald a renewed focus from Dassault on marketing the type in the region.
This year’s Singapore Airshow features numerous first appearances, including airliners, helicopters and unmanned air vehicles. Here we capture some of them.