Bombardier says that it will begin Learjet 45 deliveries "immediately following the successful conclusion of planned post-certification modifications to the anti-icing system". The Learjet 45 was certificated last September and deliveries had been expected to begin before the end of the year.

"We committed to our customers that their aircraft would be operational through the entire performance envelope upon delivery," explains Bombardier Business Aircraft president Mike Graff. Known-icing tests are under way, and once the anti-icing system is approved "we'll be able to quickly deliver the aircraft", he says.

Approval of the ice prevention system has been delayed by a problem with refreezing of melted ice running back from the heated nacelle lip and into the engine. This has been resolved by incorporating a design feature to remove the water at the leading edge.

Bombardier, meanwhile, is moving ahead with full-scale production against an order backlog of "more than 155 aircraft". Graff says that Learjet is "making every effort to achieve a full production rate as quickly as possible". Bombardier intends to deliver the same number of aircraft as planned for this year.

The Learjet 45's rival, Cessna's Citation Excel, has also had certification delays. Deliveries are to start in the third quarter.

Testing of Bombardier's Global Express ultra long range business jet is progressing more smoothly, the company claims. "The aircraft's performance continues to meet our objectives and we are targeting certification in May or June," says John Holding, Bombardier Aerospace executive vice-president, engineering and product development. The company says that it has firm orders for 75 aircraft.

The first Global Express, 9001, is undergoing field performance testing in Roswell, New Mexico. Aircraft 9002 has undergone hot and cold weather tests and is being prepared for natural ice testing.

Final autopilot testing will begin soon with aircraft 9003, and Global Express 9004 will begin final certification phase, function and reliability testing in April.

Source: Flight International