New Zealand's Pacific Aerospace (PAC) PAC 750XL has completed several flight tests as part of an agreement between PAC, its US distributor Utility Aircraft and the Mojave, California-based US National Test Pilot School, which has been enlisted to help certificate the single-engined turboprop to US Federal Aviation Administration Part 23 requirements.

PAC says the Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-powered utility aircraft flew five sorties and completed around 80 spins during which a number of shortcomings "at the extremes of the envelope" were identified and are now being rectified.

PAC reveals that the aileron forces were too heavy. The ailerons are being redesigned to obtain stick forces of less than 7.26kg (16lb); the flaps are also being strengthened to handle the spin recovery speeds, while the vertical surfaces are being increased in size by extending the fin and rudder, PAC says.

The upgraded aircraft is scheduled for completion this month, after which flight testing will resume.

Source: Flight International