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Lear 85 tooling under way

LearjetBombardier Aerospace reports that it has completed the first all-composite manufacturing validation unit (MVU) for the Learjet 85’s fuselage pressure section. The MVU, built at Bombardier’s Montreal factory, is constructed using actual production tooling that will be used to build production Learjet 85s. The MVU will be used to validate the design concepts, manufacturing processes, and quality behind assembly of the airplanes’ pressure vessels.

“This achievement is a further illustration of our commitment to developing more efficient aircraft using composite structures,” said François Caza, Bombardier’s vice president and chief engineer.

The 45,000-pound MVU will soon be transferred to the Learjet 85’s assembly facility in Queretaro, Mexico, where a second MVU will be built. Production of the first Learjet 85s is set to begin later this year, according to Bombardier. The first tooling is scheduled for installation at Queretaro later this month. The first of the new, all-composite, 0.82-Mach, 3,000-nm mid-sized Learjet 85s should enter into service in 2013.

Thomas A. Horne
Thomas A. Horne
AOPA Pilot Editor at Large
AOPA Pilot Editor at Large Tom Horne has worked at AOPA since the early 1980s. He began flying in 1975 and has an airline transport pilot and flight instructor certificates. He’s flown everything from ultralights to Gulfstreams and ferried numerous piston airplanes across the Atlantic.

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