The Airvan on display next to the flight line could have a turbocharged version alongside it by next year.
“It’s going through certification in Australia,” says Kerry Ashcroft from Gippsland Aeronautics’ sales and technical support team. “Once that’s completed we’ll send it over to Europe so we can do European certification.”
The Lycoming TIO-540 will give a power boost but, he adds: “We’re in talks with Rolls-Royce to hopefully secure the B17-F turboprop engine.”
The Airvan earned certification in its Australian home in 2000 and from the FAA in 2003. EASA certified it in 2005.
It’s designed for short trips and utility work, with cargo space of 164 cubic feet, a normal cruise of 118kts and typical range of 730nm over six hours.
Five are in the UK, mostly with parachute clubs, and five more are based in mainland Europe. Sixteen are in operation this year by the US Civil Aviation Patrol on border duty.
In June, the type certificate for the Australian-designed Nomad twin turboprop aircraft were handed over to Gippsland from Boeing Australia and production plans are underway.
Source: Flight International