Textron Aviation has completed initial wind tunnel testing of its new twin-engine Cessna SkyCourier turboprop, which will provide performance and aerodynamic characteristics and structural load data, further finalizing the aircraft design.
“For the initial wind tunnel testing, we use a custom, precision model with electric motors and scaled propellers calibrated to represent the thrust produced by the real aircraft,” said Brad Thress, senior vice president, engineering.
“We’re making outstanding progress in the development of this clean-sheet aircraft and are eager to continue defining the details that will allow us to start creating tools and parts.”
Textron Aviation announced the Cessna SkyCourier in November 2017 and as part of the aircraft’s design development, the company is garnering feedback from its Customer Advisory Board (CAB) to affirm what customers need in large twin-utility segment.
“The flexibility and mission potential for the Cessna SkyCourier is attractive to a wide variety of operators,” said Thress. “The feedback we’re gathering from the CAB is extremely important as we develop an aircraft that is reliable, efficient and meets the diverse requirements of an array of mission profiles.”
The company is anticipating first flight of the Cessna SkyCourier in 2019 with entry into service in 2020.