Fairchild Dornier is close to completing the preliminary design of its stretched 50-seat 528JET derivative, with the outstanding issue of engine selection expected to be resolved soon.

Earl Robinson, Fairchild Dornier's senior vice-president for product development, says that the company hopes to select a powerplant by early December. Candidate engines include the Pratt & Whitney Canada PW308B, the AlliedSignal AS9000 and the General Electric CF34-8C.

Fairchild Dornier has already secured a deal with Italy's Aermacchi and Portugal's OGMA to produce components for the fuselage, which will be stretched by 7m over the baseline Dornier 328 turboprop and its 328JET derivative. The latter will be powered by the PW306B. A risk-sharing partner is being sought for the new wing, which will be radically different from the current design.

Source: Flight International