On February 19, 2007 Bombardier announced the launch of its CRJ1000 regional jet, the next major step in the evolution of the CRJ Series aircraft family, the world's most successful family of regional aircraft. Previously designated the CRJ900X jet, the CRJ1000 regional airliner is designed specifically to meet the needs of growing regional airlines for jets of up to 100 seats, with a focus on extremely low operating costs and improvements to cabin comfort. The CRJ1000 gave Bombardier Aerospace a larger common family of regional jets: 50-seat CRJ200, 70-seat CRJ700, 86 to 90-seat CRJ900 and now the CRJ1000. All have the same pilot type rating, common spares, common maintenance and common customer support, resulting in significant cost savings for an operator with an all-Bombardier fleet.
"We anticipated the need for larger regional aircraft when we introduced the CRJ700 regional jet in 1997 and the CRJ900 regional jet in 2000. These aircraft are now the backbones of many airline fleets worldwide," said Pierre Beaudoin, President and Chief Operating Officer, Bombardier Aerospace. "Today, with the CRJ1000 aircraft, Bombardier continues to build on its ongoing commitment to product innovation. The CRJ1000 regional jet combines the proven platform, reliability and flexible cabin configurations of its predecessors with its closest competitor having up to 15 per cent higher trip cash operating costs."
With a maximum takeoff weight (MTOW) of 91,800 pounds (41,632 kilograms), the CRJ1000 aircraft offers a maximum range of 1,691 nautical miles (3,139 kilometres) with 100 passengers, under certain operating conditions. Compared to older generation aircraft of similar passenger capacity currently in operation, the CRJ1000 also responds to today's environmental needs by providing substantially lower fuel consumption and achieving up to 30 per cent reduced carbon dioxide engine emissions.
Compared to the CRJ900, the CRJ1000 has a 116-inch (2.95 m) longer fuselage for an overall length of 128 feet, 4.7 inches (39.13 m). Compared to the CRJ900, the CRJ1000 landing gear has been strengthened, wing area has increased by 7.5 per cent, and wing trailing edge and wing tips have been extended. The CRJ1000 is powered by two General Electric CF34-8C5A1-A3 engines of 13,630 pounds (60.63 kN) of thrust, growing to 14,510 pounds (64.54 kN) with Automatic Power Reserve. The CRJ1000 is available in both basic and Extended Range (ER) versions. Maximum take-off weight of the basic aircraft is 90,000 pounds (40,824 kg) and MTOW for the ER version is 91,800 pounds (41,640 kg). Maximum range at the Mach 0.78 cruise speed is 1,491 nm (2,761 km) for the basic aircraft and 1,691 nm (3,131 km) for the ER model. On a 500-nm (926 km) flight with 100 passengers, the basic aircraft burns 59.1 pounds (26.8 kg) of fuel per seat and the ER version burns 55.3 pounds (25.1 kg) per seat.
With up to 15 per cent reduction in aircraft operating costs against its closest competitor, the CRJ1000 NextGen aircraft is the optimized solution in the regional airline industry for medium-haul application. Airline passengers want increased comfort and more non-stop flights. Airlines need better fuel efficiency, lower maintenance costs and dependable performance.
Bombardier Aerospace announced September 3, 2008 that the prototype CRJ1000 NextGen jetliner, serial number 19991, made its successful inaugural flight from the Bombardier facility at Mirabel, Québec. The flight, crewed by pilots Jacques Thibaudeau and Chuck Ellis and flight test engineer Eugene Lardizabal took off at 10:02 a.m. EDT and lasted three hours and 25 minutes. It reached an altitude of 30,000 feet (9,144 m) and a maximum speed of 260 knots (481 km/h). "We put the gear up, operated the flaps and slats and exercised our new 'Fly-by-Wire' rudder," said Mr. Thibaudeau. " All systems worked as they were designed to do. The aircraft handled similarly to the smaller CRJ900 airliner so flight crews have no problem in transitioning to the 100-seat CRJ1000 NextGen aircraft."
A first flight is an important milestone in the development of a new aircraft such as the CRJ1000 NextGen regional jet. The Wichita flight test team, supported by the product development team would be following a disciplined approach to flight testing and remain on schedule for subsequent milestones before the 100-seat aircraft enters commercial service in the fourth quarter of 2009. Following a few more flights from Mirabel, the prototype CRJ1000 NextGen jet was flown to the Bombardier Flight Test Center in Wichita, Kansas where, in 2009, it would be joined by the first production CRJ1000 NextGen airliner to prepare for entry into service and review by the Flight Operations Evaluation Board composed of pilots from Transport Canada, the Federal Aviation Administration and the European Aviation Safety Agency.
The CRJ1000 aircraft program was launched with 38 firm orders, 15 of which are CRJ900 conversions, and 23 conditional orders and options. The following three customers have placed these orders. Brit Air of Morlaix, France, a wholly owned subsidiary of Air France, has placed a firm order for eight CRJ1000 aircraft, and has taken options on eight additional CRJ1000 aircraft. Based on CRJ1000 list price, the value of Brit Air's eight firm ordered aircraft is approximately $371 million US which could rise to $768 million US if the airline exercises its eight options. With the launch of the CRJ1000 aircraft, My Way Airlines of Italy is converting, as announced in September 2006, 15 of its 19 CRJ900 regional jet orders to CRJ1000 regional jets. The original contract value for the 19 CRJ900 aircraft, based on CRJ900 aircraft list price, was approximately $702 million US. This value increased to approximately $857 million US for four CRJ900 and 15 CRJ1000 aircraft, based on CRJ900 and CRJ1000 aircraft list prices. An undisclosed customer has placed a firm order for 15 of the aircraft, with a conditional order for an additional 15. Based on CRJ1000 list price, the contract value for this 15 aircraft firm order is approximately $704 million US, which could increase to $1.5 billion US if the airline's 15 conditional orders are executed.
By September 2008 the CRJ1000 NextGen aircraft program had attracted a total of 63 firm orders, conditional orders and options, from four airlines. Brit Air (a subsidiary of Air France) had ordered eight aircraft and held options on an additional eight. Myair.com in Italy ordered 15 aircraft, converting an earlier order for 15 CRJ900 jets to the CRJ1000 NextGen aircraft. Adria Airways of Slovenia has ordered one aircraft, and also held one option. An undisclosed customer had ordered 15 CRJ1000 NextGen aircraft, with a conditional order for 15.
At entry-into-service in 2010, the CRJ1000 NextGen aircraft joined the most successful regional aircraft family in the world, building on a proven platform, with proven reliability and cost efficiency, while providing increased seating capacity and lower seat-mile costs. As of March 31, 2013, the company had received orders for 67, of which 30 had been delivered.
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