Embraer has mated the three fuselage sections of its Legacy 500 midsize business jet prototype.
The joining of the cockpit, centre and aft fuselage took place earlier this week at the Brazilian airframer's São José dos Campos facility.
The first flight of the $18.4 million, nine-passenger twinjet is scheduled for the second half of the year, leading to certification and service entry in 2012.
"The joining of the fuselage sections of the first prototype is a key milestone in our development schedule," says Maurício Almeida, Embraer vice president, executive jet programmes.
"Embraer is adopting a multi-site industrial strategy for the production of parts and major structures of the Legacy 500, supplied from all over the world."
Sonaca, Alestis and Ducommun are the key structural suppliers. Other suppliers include; Rockwell Collins (avionics), Honeywell (engines, APU, pressurisation, cabin management and air conditioning), FACC (monuments and linings), Goodrich (anemometric system and cockpit seats), B/E Aerospace (passenger seats, cabin lighting, waste system and airflow outlets), Parker (fuel, flight controls and hydraulic generation), SKF (thrust lever and rudder pedals), Heroux Devtek (landing gear), Zodiac (oxygen and electric power distribution), and Meggitt (pneumatic system and wheels and brakes), are fully engaged and ready to support this important development phase.