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20th of July 2005

The Grob G180 SPn made its first flight on this day in aviation history in 2005.

At the turn of the century, the German aircraft manufacturer Grob was mainly known for building gliders and trainers. In close collaboration with Swiss-based company, ExecuJet Aviation group the requirements for the aircraft were established basically as an 8 seat jet aircraft, which could be quickly reconfigured in cargo or combined cargo-passenger aircraft.

The relatively large wheels with a low inflation pressure helped were aimed at the use of the aircraft from unprepared runways. Powered by two Williams FJ44-3Aturbofan engines. The avionics (Honeywell APEX) of the aircraft was designed in such a way that customers could choose optional avionics to be fitted to the aircraft;

  • Enhanced Vision System

  • Auto Throttle

  • Emergency Descent System

  • Electronic Flight Bag

One of the prototypes

After the above mentioned first flight, a second prototype joined the test program, sadly the aircraft was lost and the Grob test pilot was killed, due to a crash (on the 29th of November 2006) caused by the flutter of the elevators and tailplane. Three months later (February 2007) the test flights commenced again, with a third prototype.

At the end of 2008, Grob went bankrupt and the program came to a grinding halt. Although several companies showed interest and gained the rights to the design, it has not materialised in a resurgence of the Grob G180 SPn program

Some specifications for the Grob G180 SPn

  • Crew: 1 pilot

  • Capacity: 9 passengers

  • Length: 14.81 m (48 ft 7 in)

  • Wingspan: 14.86 m (48 ft 9 in)

  • Height: 5.12 m (16 ft 9.5 in)

  • Gross weight: 6,300 kg (13,889 lb)

  • Powerplant: 2 × Williams FJ44-3A turbofans, 12.44 kN (2,800 lbf) thrust each

  • Maximum speed: 753 km/h (468 mph, 407 kn)

  • Maximum speed: Mach 0.70

  • Stall speed: 143 km/h (89 mph, 77 kn)

  • Range: 3,425 km (2,128 mi, 1,849 nmi)

  • Service ceiling: 12,500 m (41,000 ft)

  • Rate of climb: 22 m/s (4,360 ft/min)

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