10 months ago

Ultimate Jet #73 - Phenom 300E Flight Test

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After more than 14 years, Ultimate Jet is the leading magazine dedicated to Business Aviation. In this latest issue, an analysis of how business aviation manufacturers faced Covid-19; an interview of Jahid Fazal-Karim CEO of JetCraft; a cabin design review by M&R Design Concepts; and discover the long awaited exclusive Embraer Phenom 300E Flight Test.


FLIGHT TEST I 26 «Punching way above its weight» What makes FalconEye such a joy to fly with is that a system as complex as this has been made so easy to operate via a simple set of controls on the yokes or sticks. FalconEye was so much fun to use that I almost forgot to look outside. It was a pitch black night and the one time I remembered to look out I saw nothing but black ink outside. FalconEye gave me a glimpse of the future and in the 8X I saw no need to ever turn on the autopilot-not even in turbulence. Marketplaces tend to catch up to innovators but technological unicorns such as FalconEye will be harder to copy. In the interim, insurance companies would be wise to lower their premiums for owners that invest in safety and crews that strive to make aviation even safer. It would be a pity for insurers not to reward manufacturers who design and users who adopt better practices. Funny thing about FalconEye is that I had an epiphany on my way back home after the flight. Unlike most aircraft systems and to the immense credit of the team that developed it, flying with FalconEye is much easier than describing it. Runway Overrun Awareness & Alerting System We shot some approaches and Sebastian demonstrated a very useful feature named ROAAS. It stands for Runway Overrun Awareness and Alerting System and it reduces the risk of overruns during landings. Rarely talked about, runway excursions are the third cause of aviation accidents and Embraer is the first general aviation manufacturer to offer the system in “private” aircraft. The system adjusts its calculations to cover wet runways for landing as well. While it can’t land the aircraft itself, ROAAS calculates landing parameters from data such as weight and balance, ADC, GPS and some flight crew inputs such as NOTAMS and runway conditions etc. The system will alert you to a possible overrun between 500 to 100 feet into the approach and direct you to go-around as low as 30 feet above the threshold. It can even warn you to brake more forcefully if it perceives you might be heading towards a runway overrun once you touch down. We had thoroughly briefed different scenarios before taking flight and I knew what to expect but the experience still left me in awe of the system. Binge-watching on board There is a very fast AVANCE L5 system for internet access and it did not disappoint. I found myself having to explain to a visibly inebriated Hemingway what it all means. He only came to life and was hooked once he realized he could watch fishing shows on board. He asked some relevant questions and one which I delighted in answering was why the 300E and not something else? In a nutshell, a plane is more than the sum of it parts and I can’t quite figure out if the 300E is a small plane that flies like a big plane or a big plane that flies like a small plane. Maybe it’s both because it embodies the greatness of both types. The 300E lives in a crowded field and I haven’t flown the Pilatus PC-24 yet but I can certainly say I think the search for the great little plane is over for me. n

And Hemingway didn’t punch me More about Phenom 300E Ultimate Jet I 27