Nexcelle’s nacelle system for Passport touches down at NBAA 2017 on the Global 7000
October 11, 2017
The Bombardier Global 7000’s headline-making introduction at the National Business Aviation Association’s (NBAA) 2017 convention also is spotlighting Nexcelle’s new-generation nacelle for the Passport integrated propulsion system (IPS), which powers this largest purpose-built aircraft in the business jet sector.
Exhibited on the NBAA static display in Las Vegas, Nevada is Flight Test Vehicle 4 – one of four Global 7000s that together have logged nearly 900 hours aloft. The FTV4 aircraft performed its maiden flight on September 28 from Toronto Downsview Airport in Canada, which is home to Bombardier’s Global 7000 final assembly line.
FTV4 has been dubbed “The Architect” by Bombardier in reference to being the first flight test vehicle equipped with a cabin interior, and it will soon be joined by the fifth and final FTV, which currently is being prepped for the initial takeoff. Bombardier operates its FTV fleet from the company’s flight test center in Wichita, Kansas, which coordinates the test and certification activity.
High marks for the Nexcelle nacelle from Bombardier’s test team
“Bombardier’s test team in Wichita has given high marks to our nacelle system for its performance and reliability as the Global 7000 FTVs are put through their paces and expand the flight envelope,” said Nexcelle President Kenneth Onderko.
With development and certification on track for the Global 7000’s entry-into-service in the second half of 2018, the initial eight aircraft for customers currently are progressing on the Bombardier final assembly line. This is being matched by the ramp-up in manufacturing of production-definition nacelle hardware at Nexcelle’s two parent companies: GE Aviation’s Middle River Aircraft Systems (MRAS) and Safran Nacelles.
Passport is business aviation’s first truly integrated propulsion system, resulting from the close working relationship between GE Aviation as the powerplant manufacturer and Nexcelle as the nacelle system supplier.
The nacelle’s major assemblies are shipped by the Nexcelle parent companies to GE Aviation’s Peebles, Ohio operation, where they are podded in an integration process using a fully representative Global 7000 pylon. When completed, the nacelle is carefully checked to Bombardier’s demanding tolerances for “steps and gaps” – the positioning and spacing clearances between the major nacelle assemblies.
“A key selling point for the Global 7000 is the business jet’s performance; and minimizing the steps and gaps contributes directly to performance,” Onderko noted. “Nexcelle is meeting the specifications in terms of minimizing the steps and gaps – which is a tribute to our teams’ expertise at MRAS and Safran Nacelles, and a direct benefit from working together with GE Aviation in creating an integrated propulsion system for Passport.”
In addition to Nexcelle’s nacelle appearance on the Global 7000 at Las Vegas’ Henderson Executive Airport for the NBAA aircraft static display, the GE Aviation/Safran joint venture also is represented on its parent companies’ exhibit stands inside the Las Vegas Convention Center. On the GE Aviation NBAA booth, a large illuminated poster is highlighting’s Nexcelle’s IPS experience, with the slogan: “Nexcelle is the pro for integrated propulsion systems.”