EMB 120 Brasília
The EMB 120 Brasília is a pressurized turboprop aircraft designed to carry up to 30 passengers. The EMB 120 features high cruise speed and low operating costs. The cockpit features Electronic Flight instruments. Since its launching in 1985 up to the end of 2000, 354 aircraft have been delivered and are operated by 30 airlines in 12 countries. In its segment, the EMB 120 Brasília has a market share of 25% of the world turboprop aircraft market. Since its introduction in 1985 and through December 31, 2007, Embraer had delivered 352 EMB 120 Brasília for the regional market and six EMB 120 Brasília for the defense market. Embraer currently manufacture the EMB 120 Brasília only upon customer request. The EMB 120 Brasília is built to order by the Embraer subsidiary Indústria Aeronáutica Neiva, located in the town of Botucatu - SP.
Embraer's first regional aircraft was the Bandeirante, a 19-passenger twin-engine non-pressurized turboprop aircraft initially designed to service the transport needs of the Brazilian Air Force. This aircraft was certified in 1973. The Bandeirante was followed by the development of the EMB 120 Brasília, which was certified in 1985 and is a high performance, pressurized turboprop commercial aircraft seating up to 30 passengers that was designed to serve the longer routes and higher passenger traffic of the growing regional aircraft market. Drawing upon the design of the EMB 120 Brasília and the jet technology acquired in the development of the AM-X, a jet strike bomber for the Brazilian Air Force, Embraer developed the ERJ 145 regional jet family, Embraer's first jet product for commercial use.
When the EMB-120 Brasilia was introduced in May 1985 with its launch customer, the U.S.-based Atlantic Southeast Airlines, it changed regional air travel. For the first time in aviation history, small communities and the regional airlines connecting them had an aircraft specifically designed to meet their needs. The first EMB-120 Brasilia was the fastest (300 kt of cruise speed), the lightest (25,353 lbs of maximum take-off weight) and the most economical aircraft of the 30-40 seat range.
Embraer sold 329 EMB-120 Brasilia aircraft by 2012, and continued to make technological updates, resulting in reduced operational and maintenance costs, and improved dispatch reliability. Within a 10-year period aimed at improving the EMB-120 design and maintenance to promote passenger comfort and reduction of operational costs, Embraer incorporated numerous changes to the Brasilia.
Modifications leading to even greater passenger comfort include a 31-inch seat pitch and 7 psi pressurization in the cabin. The 30-seat twin turboprop is now equipped with powerful 1,800 SHP Pratt & Whitney PW118A turboprop engines, and has an even greater cruise speed (315 kt) as compared with the original aircraft speed, and its maximum take-off weight has increased to 26,433 lbs. Embraer implemented a passive control system for noise and vibration. The improvement in comfort is perceptible to passengers, since noise and vibration were reduced considerably and were better distributed along the length of the cabin.
The aircraft offered superior safety levels since its inception, designed in compliance with FAR 25 requirements - the same that apply to large jetliners such as the Boeing 747. Extensive ongoing testing has been carried out to ensure the aircraft's continued reliability and safety. On March 12, 1996, Embraer received a special certificate of recognition from the FAA for initiating an intensive and comprehensive test of the EMB-120 Brasilia in super-cooled large droplet icing conditions which demonstrated the aircraft's safety.
The Brasilia is flown by 29 companies in 14 countries. The world fleet has logged more than five million flight hours and carried more than 60 million passengers. By 2012 the EMB-120 Brasilia commanded a 24% share of the worldwide sales market, in the 21-40 seat category.
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