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Phenom 100 flight testing begins in earnest

The first Phenom 100 very light jet test aircraft arrived at Embraer's test facility in Gaviao Peixoto on 4 August, where it began what is expected to be a 1,200 flight-hour certification programme along with several other Phenoms now under construction.

Test pilots last week took the aircraft to 41,000ft (12,500m) and planned to begin envelop expansion tests this week, executing stalls, directional and longitudinal manoeuvres.

By 7 August, the first aircraft had accumulated 15 flight hours and 41 total operating hours. From 1 July, Embraer raised the price of the Phenom 100 from $2.85 million per aircraft to $2.98 million, although buyers paying a deposit in August will ultimately pay about $3.4 million when they pick up the first available aircraft in late 2011 because of inflation.

Embraer says it has more than 450 firm orders for the Phenom 100 and its larger sibling, the Phenom 300.

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