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Textron suspends Cessna Hemisphere programme

Textron Aviation has suspended development of the Cessna Hemisphere business jet over continued uncertainties regarding the aircraft's Safran Aircraft Engines Silvercrest turbofans.

Safran says that the "initial contract" with Cessna has been "terminated with no financial impact for either partner".

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Textron Aviation

The French manufacturer acknowledges that "the aircraft/engine combination does not currently meet all the objectives".

Textron had awaited the outcome of engine ground tests after Safran redesigned the Silvercrest's high-pressure compressor (HPC).

Safran says that the performance of the new HPC during ground tests "exceeded expectations".

However, the manufacturer adds that further trials are necessary to "confirm engine improvements and complete overall engine performance and durability validation".

Following Textron's decision to put the Hemisphere "on hold", Safran will continue the Silvercrest effort as an "R&T platform", it says.

"[We] will update Textron on the product completion thus providing them with an opportunity for a re-assessment of the situation," Safran notes. The freezing of the Hemisphere programme comes despite the manufacturer securing a deal last year from NetJets for up to 150 examples of the long-range type.

The Silvercrest was originally due to power the Dassault Falcon 5X, but that programme was eventually cancelled due to persistent delays with the engine.

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