Handley Page's first Jetstream business airliner was rolled out of the company's ten-acre final-assembly hall at Radlett aerodrome, Hertfordshire, today.
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Background: Handley Page's first Jetstream business airliner was rolled out of the company's ten-acre final-assembly hall at Radlett aerodrome, Hertfordshire, today.
This is the prototype of the 8 to 18 seat turbo-prop that has already won orders for 165 - the largest ever for a new civil aircraft before it flies.
The prototype will be fitted out with scientific equipment and will complete a ground-test programmed prior to making its maiden flight next month.
In its wake are four more Jetstream prototypes to share in the seven-days-a-week certification trial which will enable deliveries to customers in Europe, America, Africa and the Near East to commence next spring.
With range up to 2,000 miles, the Jetstream flies at more than 300 m.p.h. and is pressurised to 6.5 p.s.i. for cruising at altitudes up to 30,000 ft. It has a wing span of 52 ft., length of 43 ft. 15 in. and height of 17 ft. 5 in. Its exceptionally spacious cabin is over 24 ft. long and 6 ft. wide and high. It operates not only from small aerodromes but also from unpaved airstrips at out-of-town offices, factories, ranches, beaches etc.
A truly versatile all-weather business aircraft, the Jetstream's prop-jet flexibility gives it great advantage over turbo-jets. It is also considerably cheaper to buy (less than GBP 150,000 basic) and to operate than turbo-jets of half its size and with far less capacity.