Progress continues to swiftly move forward with the Supplemental Type Certification (STC) efforts for the XP67A Engine+ Upgrade. Below are some milestones we have achieved over the past month and some of the tasks that will shortly take place:
So far, 68 of the 75 required FAA certification tests have been satisfactorily completed and the remaining 7 are on schedule. Each of the tests require the airplane to be configured in a specific test condition so a lot of time, effort, and planning has gone into this. A combination of good weather, good chemistry between our crew and the FAA DER test group, and the hard work from engineering and product support teams have helped streamline the testing. We are still on target to receive the STC in June of this year.
- Total number of flights with the -67A engines and MT 5-blade props installed: 55
- Total number of flight hours on the -67A engines and MT 5-blade props: 61 hours
- Total number of certification flights completed: 15
- Total number of certification flight test hours completed: 20
- Estimated number of remaining certification flight test hours: 20 (includes us finishing and the FAA evaluating our results later on)
- Landing distances – we must show they are equal to or better than the stock -60A airplane and Hartzell props. Requires excellent weather and very light surface winds to accomplish.
- Engine and Starter/Generator Cooling – two tests (one with both engines operating and one with only the right engine operating) requiring high electrical loads placed on the airplane and grueling maximum power climbs until the engine temperatures peak.
For scheduling purposes, please note that it takes about 10 weeks to get the MT 5 blade propellers from the time we place the order. If you are planning on upgrading in 2017, please make sure you have placed your refundable deposit to eliminate delays.
If everything continues to go according to schedule, we will be demonstrating our King Air 350 in Nashville Tennessee on Friday, May 19th. Please contact our Marketing Coordinator, Lindsay Allmon, if you would like to participate in that event or to schedule a demo closer to you. Lindsay can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at +1 (254) 755-6711.
A final thought – Obtaining new engine STC’s requires flight tests that are exacting, controlled, and numerous. The result is that Blackhawk customers can rest assured their future new engine upgrades have been tested and evaluated to the same exacting standards required of all other aircraft manufacturers. And the results we are realizing are phenomenal! ATC is constantly asking what we have done to get a King Air to fly that fast. We are enjoying this airplane with its higher utility and so will you.