By Di Freeze
On May 11, the Federal Aviation Administration issued a type certificate to Adam Aircraft for the A500 centerline twin.
“We’re very pleased for our team who worked so hard for this TC,” said Adam Aircraft chairman and CEO Rick Adam. “I’m also very happy for our customers who will be able to pilot their A500s soon. Working with the FAA, we have produced a next-generation twin that meets or exceeds the highest safety and regulatory standards.”
The A500 is constructed of high-performance Toray carbon fiber material, producing an extremely strong and aerodynamically efficient airframe. The centerline configuration for the twin Teledyne Continental TSIO-550 powerplants provides the reliability of two engines without compromising single-engine stability.
Inside the cabin, pilots and passengers will experience many of the latest technological advancements such as seats rated to 26Gs, side-stick controls, airbags at the crew stations, and a flight deck with large Avidyne flat screen displays and Garmin nav/com systems. As passengers step up from the air stair door of the A500 into the club-seating configuration in the cabin, they’ll appreciate the wide aisle for ease of movement and the largest cabin in its class.
The first major production milestone for the A500 was announced in October 2004, with the rollout of S/N 004, the first customer aircraft. Since that time, five other customer aircraft have been added to the production process. Facilities in Colorado and Utah will contribute to a capacity ramp-up goal of six aircraft per month, during which time the production certification is expected.
A world-class customer experience is a high priority for Adam Aircraft. The A500 support structure includes nine factory-authorized service centers and AOG field service assistance will be provided to maintain the highest degree of dispatch reliability for customer aircraft. Training for pilots will be provided at the factory under an FAA-approved FAA Industry Training Standards training syllabus. Customers will also receive assistance in finding competitive financing through Adam Aircraft Financing as well as insurance alternatives for their aircraft.
“Placing customers into their planes for the very first time is always the most rewarding part of any aircraft development process,” said Joe Walker, president and COO of Adam Aircraft. “Having flown more than 50 people in the A500 already, our customers tell us how easy the A500 is to fly, how strong the performance is, how comfortable the cockpit and cabin are, and how confident they feel in the aircraft. When people walk up to the A500 on the ramp, they’re amazed at its substantial size and commanding presence. We’re looking forward to delivering this great aircraft to our backlog of more than 65 customers.”
The TC for the A500 will be upgraded to final performance and specifications concurrent with volume deliveries that begin in the third quarter of 2005. Final performance numbers will include a 230-knot cruise speed, more than a 1,000 nm NBAA IFR range at 75 percent power, and a cabin altitude of 8,000 feet at a maximum aircraft operating altitude of 25,000 feet.
A500 TC represents the culmination of more than 450 dedicated Adam Aircraft team members’ efforts and 2,000 hours of developmental and certification flight test work. The team has contributed over 1.5 million man-hours towards the TC since 1998.
For more information, visit [http://www.adamaircraft.com].