Nextant Aerospace hopes to secure validation in the first half of 2017 for the digitally controlled, single-lever power control system in its G90XT twin-engined turboprop. The approval is the final hurdle in the remanufactured Beechcraft King Air C90’s certification campaign, and will allow Nextant to begin deliveries of the six-seat type.

The G90XT was awarded US type certification in November 2015 but the single-lever controls required additional testing. “The system is not retrofittable, so there have been no deliveries to date,” says Nextant’s executive vice-president of global sales and marketing, Jay Heublein.

“The aircraft has flown several hundred hours and the system has been operating flawlessly,” he continues. “We hope to get an amendment to the type certificate shortly and begin delivering aircraft in the [third quarter].”


Nextant Aerospace

Heublein describes the G90XTs single-lever controls as “the first radically new technology to hit the turboprop market in years”.

“It’s the first electronic engine control system designed for a business turboprop, and provides an entirely new level of safety for operators,” he says.

“Think of it as the equivalent of a FADEC with complete exceedance protection. The pilots cannot over-temp or over-torque the engines,” Heublein says.

The G90XT was launched by Cleveland, Ohio-based Nextant in 2013, in partnership with engine manufacturer GE Aviation. The upgraded aircraft features GE H75-100 turboprops, a Regent flightdeck based on the Garmin G1000 avionics suite, a digital pressurisation system, and a redesigned interior and cockpit.

The aircraft is priced at $2.5 million, although Nextant is offering an engine and avionics retrofit programme to C90 owners for $1.95 million.

The G90XT is the second aircraft in Nextant's line-up after the 400XT/XTi light business jet. The remanufactured Hawker 400/Beechjet 400A entered service in 2011 and nearly 70 of the type have been delivered to date.

The airframer is now lining up its third project, which Heublein says with be announced later in this year

Source: Flight International