FARNBOROUGH 2008: Dassault 7X debuts after rapid development

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Dassault Aviation’s 7X makes its Farnborough debut this year in the Business Air Park.

The OEM’s flagship civil trijet scored a first in April last year when it won dual simultaneous full type certification from both the EASA and FAA.

By May, serial number 04 of the type had accumulated over 1,000 flight hours and flown more than 750,000km (400,000nm) since it entered service in 2007.

The 7X was the first aircraft ever designed and built in an entirely virtual environment using the Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) philosophy.

The PLM manufacturing process brings collaborative design and production teams closer together. Consequently, the time required to manufacture and complete the first flight-test ready 7X was lower by as much as 50% compared to previous Falcons.

The 7X is also the first business jet to be flown with Fly-by-Wire (FBW) technology and features the EASy Flight Deck. Powered by three Pratt & Whitney Canada PW307A engines, it has a range of 5,950 nm, which can comfortably connect 95% of the commonly used business aviation city pairs. Standard configuration features seating for 12 but the aircraft was certified to carry up to 19 with a crew of three.

 dassault falcon 7x

According to Dassault, the UK offers strong market opportunities for its business jets. The company says that Farnborough is a good place to see its English customers as well its Middle East and Russian clients that are London based.

The French airframer is tight-lipped about the specifications of its new planned super-mid-size SMS business jet, launched a year ago and likely to enter service in 2012.

Flight International reported last week that the Rolls-Royce RB282-3-powered SMS will be the second Dassault civil jet to feature Dassault’s digital flight control (DFCS) system, following its flagship Falcon 7X.

The OEM’s flight-control system development department has been working on the project for the last few weeks. Dassault says it will not reveal any further details about the SMS during the show.

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