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Eclipse Aviation Eclipse 500

 

eclipse500

 

The Eclipse 500’s price tag was promised at $837,500 and brought in deposits for more than 2,000 airplanes.
The Eclipse 500 business jet programme was temporarily suspended in 2002 because of problems with the starters and fuel-metering equipment on the aircraft’s compact Williams EJ22 engines. On August 26, 2002, at Albuquerque International Sunport, prototype N500EA first flewwith test pilot Bill Bubb. The acceleration is lethargic, especially for an airplane loaded so lightly. In the hot, thin, mile-high air, the EJ22s can generate barely half their rated thrust. After a leisurely takeoff roll of more than 3,000 feet, the airplane lifts off and begins a gentle climb, paralleling the Sangre de Cristo mountains off its left wing. For about an hour, Bubb flies the planned test routine, checking out general handling qualities and systems operation. Overall, the flight is free of major glitches. The Eclipse 500 never again flew with EJ22s.
 
Three months later, Eclipse Aviation announced: “The EJ22 is not a viable solution for the Eclipse 500 aircraft, and Williams International has not met its contractual obligations.” Williams conceded that it had run into “a number of challenges” with the EJ22 but insisted it had satisfied the contract, implying that the airplane had simply grown too heavy.
 
Eclipse signed a deal with Pratt & Whitney to develop a smaller version of a more conventional engine. The PW610F would develop 900 pounds of thrust, but it would weigh 260 pounds—triple the weight of the EJ22. The extra power would give the Eclipse 500 a bit better speed and climb, but there was a big downside: an empty-weight gain of 700 pounds and a 20 percent increase in fuel consumption. The price and cost projections eventually ballooned to $1.3 million and 89 cents a mile.
 
First flight with Pratt & Whitney Canada PW610F turbofan engines was in December 2004.Three years later, flight tests of the P&W-powered Eclipse 500 were proceeding smoothly. The Eclipse 500 became the first of a new class of Very Light Jets (VLJ) when the first jet was delivered in late 2006. The engines are in aft fuselage-mounted nacelles.
 
Production of the Eclipse 500 was halted in mid-2008 due to lack of funding and the company entered bankruptcy.

 

Eclipse-500-2

 

Gallery

 

Engines; 2 Pratt & Whitney Canada PW610F turbofans
Takeoff Thrust at Sea Level ISA+15°C (86°F)  900 lb (each)  4.00 kn (each)
Length 33.5 ft 10.2 m
Wingspan 37.9 ft 11.6 m
Height 11.0 ft 3.4 m
Maximum Ramp weight 6,034 lb / 2,737 kg
Maximum Takeoff weight 6,000 lb / 2,722 kg
Maximum Landing weight 5,600 lb / 2,540 kg
Empty weight 3,634 lb / 1,648 kg
Fuel Capacity 1,698 lb/251 gal / 770 kg/950 l
Useful Load 2,400 lb / 1,089 kg
Sea Level Cabin to; 21,500 ft 6,533 m
Cabin Altitude at 41,000 ft; 8,000 ft 2,438 m
Takeoff Distance Sea Level, ISA to 50 ft (15 m) @ MGTOW 2,345 ft 715 m
Landing Distance Sea Level, ISA @ 4,600-lb (2,087-kg) landing weight 2,250 ft 686 m
Rate of Climb – 2 engines 3,424 ft / min  1,044 m / min
Rate of Climb – 1 engine 989 ft / min 301 m / min
Time to Climb – 35,000 ft (10,688 m) 22 min
Takeoff at 5,000 ft (1,524 m) At ISA + 15°C; 3,881 ft 1,183 m
Single Engine Takeoff Climb at 5,000 ft (1,524 m) At ISA + 15°C; 705 fpm / 215 m / min
Max Cruise Speed; 370 kt / 685 km / hr
Vso; 69 kt / 128 km / hr
Vmo; 285 kt / 528 kph / 0.64 Mach
Maximum Altitude; 41,000 ft / 12,497 m
Single Engine Service Ceiling 25,000 ft / 7,620 m
Range 100 nm alternate; 1,125 nm / 2,084 km
Range - Max IFR 45-min res, 4 POB; 1,300 nm / 2,408 km
Cabin length; 148 in /376 cm
Cabin height (max); 50 in / 127 cm
Cabin width (max); 56 in / 142 cm
Seats 6

 


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