ALBUQUERQUE, N.M., 5 June 2012.Eclipse Aerospace Inc., manufacturer of very light jets (VLJs), has begun initial production of its new model Eclipse 550 twin-engine jet. Eclipse Dealers from more than 30 countries attended and signed agreements for the purchase of new Eclipse 550 Jets slated for delivery in 2014 and early 2015.
Eclipse is now armed with an established supply chain, a new FAA production certificate, and a certified airframe, says a representative. Eclipse plans initial low-volume production with the first aircraft taking approximately 12 months to complete as the balance of the production line is re-tooled and validated during the process. Full production for an estimated 50 to 100 aircraft per year is expected in 2014, paced by market demand, according to officials.
During the official launch, Eclipse dealers representing more than 30 different countries were on hand as the management team and Board of Directors for Eclipse Aerospace signed the fuselage of the first production aircraft, Serial Number 1001. The Eclipse production team also mated the forward keel assembly to the fuselage.
The new model Eclipse 550 twin-engine jet is built upon the Eclipse 500 but will offer auto-throttles, synthetic vision, enhanced vision, and a redundant flight management system. First deliveries are expected in mid-2013.