Dassault Falcon 7X

Dassault Falcon 7X

The Dassault Falcon 7X is a large-cabin, 5,950 nautical miles (11,020 km) range business jet manufactured by Dassault Aviation, the second largest of its Dassault Falcon line. Launched at 2001 Paris Air Show, its first flight was on 5 May 2005 and it entered service on 15 June 2007. The Falcon 8X is derived from the 7X with a longer range of 6,450 nautical miles (11,950 km) afforded by engine optimizing, aerodynamic refinements and an increase in fuel capacity. Featuring an S-duct central engine, it and the Falcon 900 are the only two trijets in production.

Falcon 7X

Development

Dassault launched the FNX at the 2001 Paris Air Show, aiming for a 10,500km (5,700nm) range at Mach 0.88 up from the Falcon 900EX 8,300 km at Mach 0.84. Its new high-speed wing is 1.86 m (6 ft 1 in) longer with 5° higher wing sweep than the 900 wing, while its fuselage is 20% longer, it keeps the same cabin cross-section but with a new curved windscreen. The trijet has a combined thrust of 18,000lb (80kN) provided by Honeywell FX5s, a new design, or a Pratt & Whitney Canada PW306 growth version. Based on Honeywell Primus Epic avionics, its EASy cockpit is developed for the Falcon 2000EX and 900EX and controls are fly-by-wire. Scheduled to fly in 2004, first deliveries were planned for mid-2006.

With 41 deposits, it was named 7X in November with first flight slipping from late 2004 to early 2005 and certification planned for mid-2006. With a simplified structure to reduce cost and weight, the optimised high-transonic wing improves by more than 10% the lift-to-drag ratio over the supercritical-section wing of the Falcon 50 shared by previous Falcons. The cabin is 2.4m (8ft) longer than the 900 and have a lower 6,000ft (1,800m) cabin altitude. the 6,100 lbf (27.1 kN) PW307A was finally selected, among other risk-sharing partners: Honeywell for avionics architecture, auxiliary power unit, air management system; with Parker Hannifin for the power generation system and wheels brakes; and TRW Aeronautical Systems for the hydromechanical flap and airbrake systems.

With over 50 firm orders, it completed its first flight on 5 May in 1h 36min from Bordeaux-Merignac, starting a 1,200h flight test programme over 15 month: it climbed to 10,000 ft (3,000 m) for hydraulic, fuel, air data and landing gear extraction/retraction systems tests, then climbed to 25,000 ft for acceleration/deceleration tests and basic autopilot and autothrottle operations. The second Falcon 7X should join in June, and the third with a full interior in September for long-range, endurance tests and interior sound level validation: Dassault aims for a 52dB sound level in the cabin, 4dB lower than other Falcons. Certification slipped to late 2006 and first deliveries to early 2007.

It was first presented to the public at the 2005 Paris Air Show. The aircraft has received its type certification from both the Federal Aviation Administration and European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) on 27 April 2007. The first 7X, MSN05, entered service on 15 June 2007. The hundredth was delivered in November 2010. It conducted high altitude airport tests at 4,400 m (14,500 ft) in Daocheng in 2014.

Design

The Falcon 7X is a three-engined cantilever monoplane with a low-positioned, highly swept wing. It has a horizontal stabiliser at mid-height and a retractable tricycle landing gear, and three rear-mounted Pratt & Whitney PW307A turbofan engines : two on the side of the fuselage and one in a center position, and room for 20 passengers and two crew.[19] It is the first production Falcon jet with winglets.

It is the first fully fly-by-wire business jet and is equipped with the same avionics suite, the Honeywell Primus Epic “Enhanced Avionics System” (EASy), that was used on the Falcon 900EX and later on the Falcon 2000EX.

The Falcon 7X is notable for its extensive use of computer-aided design, the manufacturer claiming it to be the “first aircraft to be designed entirely on a virtual platform”, using Dassault Systemes’ CATIA and PLM products.

In February 2010, Dassault Falcon and BMW Designworks were awarded the 2009 Good Design Award by the Chicago Athenaeum and the European Centre for Architecture Art Design for their collaboration on the new Falcon 7X interior option. Due to special engine mounts and cabin isolators, the cabin is extremely quiet, below 50 dBA, and is available with a shower.

Falcon 8X

The 6,450 nmi (11,945 km) range Falcon 8X was announced at the European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition in May 2014. Its cabin is 1.1 m (3.5 ft) longer than the 7X. With improvements to wing design and improved Pratt & Whitney Canada PW300, the 8X is up to 35% more fuel efficient than its competitors.

The prototype, registered F-WWQA, first flew from Bordeaux–Mérignac Airport on 6 February 2015. The Falcon 8X was added as a subtype of the Falcon 7X on the EASA type certificate on 24 June 2016 as modification M1000 for S/N 0401 and ongoing. Dassault delivered the first Falcon 8X on 5 October 2016 to Greek business aviation operator Amjet Executive. By October 2018, the Falcon 8X FalconEye EFVS was approved by the FAA and EASA for approaches down to 100 ft (30 m), and dual HUD FalconEye will allow EVS-to-land in 2020, without using natural vision.

The three PW307D turbofans gained 320 lbf (1.4 kN) each, and are 1.5% more fuel efficient. MTOW is increased from 70,000 to 73,000 lb (31.8 to 33.1 t) and fuel capacity is increased by 3,200 lb (1.5 t) for 500 nmi (930 km) more range. The wing structure is 600 lb (270 kg) lighter, and more flexible for a plush ride, while BOW is 200 lb (91 kg) heavier than the 7X despite the 3.5 ft (1.1 m) stretch. A strict weight control allow most operators to match or best Dassault’s 36,800 lb (16.7 t) estimate BOWs for a fully equipped aircraft with three crewmembers. Its unmatched structural efficiency, with a BOW only half of MTOW, allow a superior fuel efficiency while its MTOW is less than a 4,100 nmi (7,600 km) Gulfstream IV-SP. The first hour fuel burn is 4,000 lb (1.8 t) while average cruise fuel burn is 2,250 lb (1.02 t) per h. The 47 db average cabin sound level is 2-3 db lower than the Falcon 7X.

Specifications

Variant 7X 8X
Crew two pilots + one crew
Capacity 12 to 16 passengers
Cabin section 2.34 m / 7.67 ft width, 1.88 m / 6.17 ft headroom
Cabin length  11.91 m / 39.07 ft 13 m / 42.67 ft
Length 23.38 m / 76.08 ft 24.46 m / 80.2 ft
Height 7.83 m / 25.67 ft 7.94 m / 26.1 ft
Wingspan 26.21 m / 86.00 ft 26.29 m / 86.25 ft
Wing area 70.7 m2 (761 ft²)
Wing loading 449 kg/m2 (92 lb/sq ft) 468 kg/m2 (96 lb/sq ft)
MTOW 31,751 kg / 70,000 lb 33,113 kg / 73,000 lb
Max payload 1,996 kg (4,400 lb) 2,223 kg (4,900 lb)
Fuel capacity 14,488 kg / 31,940 lb 15,830 kg / 34,900 lb
BOW 16,601 kg (36,600 lb) 16,375 kg (36,100 lb)
Turbofans (×3) P&WC PW307A P&WC PW307D
Thrust 28.48 kN / 6,402 lb 29.9 kN / 6,722 lb
Range (8 passengers) 11,019 km / 5,950 nmi 11,945 km / 6,450 nmi
Ceiling 15,545 m / 51,000 ft
Max speed Mach 0.9 (516 kn; 956 km/h)
Cruise speed Mach 0.8 (459 kn; 850 km/h)
Takeoff BFL 1,740 m / 5,710 ft 1,829 m / 6,000 ft
Landing 631 m / 2,070 ft 656 m / 2,150 ft
Avionics Falcon EASy Flight Deck

Operators

  • Royal Australian Air Force – 3 Falcon 7X leased for VVIP missions.
  • Ecuadorian Air Force – 1 Falcon 7X (ID: FAE 052) for long-distance travel along the presidential Embraer Legacy 600. Delivered November 4, 2013; first official trip November 25, 2013.
  • Egyptian Air Force – 4 Falcon 7X Order.
  • French Air and Space Force – 2 Falcon 7X. Being used primarily by then-president Nicolas Sarkozy, the first shipped airplane was nicknamed “Carla One” by French newspapers, in reference to Carla Bruni, then French First Lady.
  • Hungarian Air Force – 2 Falcon 7X (HuAF606).
  • Nigerian Air Force – 1 Falcon 7X.
Related Armament

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *