A major European aviation publication is speculating that Eclipse Aviation might have to build a separate line of its E500 very light jet to satisfy concerns of the European Aviation Safety Agency. Flight Global reported Wednesday in its EBACE publication that EASA has significant concerns. As AVwebBiz reported Wednesday, CEO Vern Raburn is saying he won´t predict when the aircraft will be able to fly in most of Europe. "We are optimistic that we´ll get European Aviation Safety Agency certification," he said. "I´m just not prepared to say when."
According to the Flight Global story, EASA has a laundry list of deficiencies it wants addressed on the Eclipse 500, even though the FAA is allowing the aircraft to fly in commercial service in the U.S. Among the issues are the lack of certification for flight into known icing. The Avio NG integrated flight management system is still not complete; there are issues with the autopilot and autothrottles, according to Flight Global; and EASA is worried about the ability of the aircraft to descend from altitude quickly enough after a sudden decompression. They´re also considering mandating a traffic alert and collision avoidance system, something Raburn has said is not practical for the aircraft.