Embraer Halts Flights of Military Cargo Jet After Test Incident (excerpt)
(Source: Reuters; published Nov 09, 2017)
SAO PAULO --- Embraer SA has stopped flying the first prototype of its new military cargo jet after a stall test last month pushed the aircraft beyond its operating limits, the planemaker said on Wednesday, adding that the project is still on schedule.

The KC-390 prototype suffered no damage to its “primary aircraft structure,” but some of its access hatches and aerodynamic fairings must be repaired before the aircraft can resume flights, Embraer said in a statement.

Embraer shares fell as much as 2 percent in Sao Paulo trading before paring losses to 1 percent.

Embraer said the incident would not affect the certification schedule of the KC-390, which enters service next year. The Brazilian Air Force has already ordered 28 of the aircraft for 7.2 billion reais ($2.3 billion), with two deliveries in 2018 and three in 2019.

Earlier on Wednesday, Brazilian trade publication Aero Magazine reported that test equipment inside the plane had come loose during a maneuver, throwing off its center of gravity, according to an unnamed engineer involved in the project. (end of excerpt)


Click here for the full story, on the Reuters website.

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Statement
(Source: Embraer; issued Nov 10, 2017)
During a certification test flight last October 12th to assess low speed flying qualities with simulated ice shapes installed, prototype 001 of the Embraer KC-390 transport/tanker aircraft has experienced an event beyond the planned limit for the test point with one of the several configurations tested.

The crew has applied the recommended recovery procedures and was able to bring the aircraft back to the normal flying angle of attack range but the maneuver characteristics and duration have resulted in a substantial altitude loss and some exceedance of both airspeed and load factor operating limitations. The flight has been interrupted and the aircraft was safely landed at the Embraer Gavião Peixoto test site. All aircraft systems have behaved as expected during the whole flight.

After detailed inspections no damage to the primary aircraft structure was found. Some external fairings and access hatches were damaged and need to be repaired before the aircraft resumes flying.

The Embraer KC-390 certification schedule is not affected and entry into service is confirmed for 2018 with the delivery of the first production aircraft to the Brazilian Air Force.

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