MEMBER ALERT: AOPA is closed today, March 5, due to inclement weather. We will reopen March 6 at 8:30 a.m. Eastern.
January 7, 2011
By Alton K. Marsh
Stratos Aircraft engineers in Bend, Ore., have done the math and believe they have the right design for the Stratos 714 single-engine personal jet, but they want to confirm those computations in the wind tunnel first. A wind tunnel model should be ready for testing by summer.
The wind tunnel testing, which could be completed two weeks after it begins, is the final step before the company approves a prototype, serial number 1. The aircraft will be conformable to the final production model of the 400-knot jet. The company isn’t saying when the aircraft might fly, preferring to spend time on the aircraft rather than on making predictions.
“Among other things, the tests will give us valuable data on lift and drag for the wing and fuselage along with a number of parameters to verify stability and control,” said Alexander Craig, CEO of Stratos. You can see a video interview with Craig with Editor in Chief Thomas B. Haines on AOPA Live. “From the wind tunnel results, we’ll be able to refine the profile of the Stratos 714, if needed, in anticipation of building the prototype aircraft.”
The aircraft will carry four to five people at 41,000 feet and have a range of 1,500 nautical miles (with NBAA reserves). It will feature side-stick controls, a glass cockpit, and a fully integrated autopilot. Landing speeds and distances are claimed to be considerably less than competing twin jets, making many more airports accessible to Stratos owner-pilots.
The company is seeking investors to put the aircraft into production.
AOPA Pilot Senior Editor Alton Marsh has been a pilot since 1970 and has an airline transport pilot certificate and instrument and multiengine flight instructor certificates, aerobatic training, and a commercial seaplane certificate.
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Actor, pilot, and general aviation advocate Harrison Ford was hospitalized March 5 after sustaining injuries in an airplane accident at a California golf course, according to multiple news reports.
Controller David Bricker of Albuquerque Center assisted a Cessna 172 pilot that encountered moderate precipitation, icing, and turbulence in mountainous terrain.
Controller James Hansmann of Los Angeles Center guides the pilot of a Cessna 182 with inoperative radios who had become disoriented in mountainous terrain, near restricted airspace and an international border.
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