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Falcon 20T / Falcon 30 / Falcon 40

The structural and performance margins on the Falcon 20 series were so great that Dassault became intrigued with the notion of building a larger-cabin aircraft based on the Falcon 20 wing, empennage, nacelles, landing gear, and other components. Three such designs saw light during the early 1970s.

First was the Falcon 20T, a widebody short-haul airliner shown as a mockup in 1971. In 1971 the large-cabin Falcon 20T short-haul airliner is designed to fly 500-nm legs with up to 24 passengers at lower seat-mile costs than the Nord 262 and similar turboprops. It is shelved for lack of suitable engines, due to thrust limitations of the CF700 then available. The Falcon 20T (which never got beyond a full-scale mockup) mockup represented an aircraft with the standard fuselage diameter of 7ft 9in, capable of carrying 25 passengers at 442kt over ranges up to 1,350nm. The engines were Rolls-Royce 172s or GE CF700s.

In 1973, the Falcon 30 short-haul airliner appeared, combining a wider and longer fuselage with Falcon 20 wings. Financed out of the company's own resources, the Mystere-Falcon 30 was a twin-engine design based on the fuselage of the Falcon 20F, stretched by 6ft 3in and with a longer wing. On the production model, the fuselage diameter increased from 7ft 9in to 8ft. Powered by two Lycoming ALF502-D turbofans generating 6,000lb, the new model was to carry 30 passengers 950 nm and operate from 4000 ft runways. The prototype made its first flight on 11 May 1973, with Jean Coureau and Jerome Resal at the controls, before being unveiled -- according to Dassault tradition -- at the Paris Air Show. After flight tests began, the fuselage was stretched to carry up to 40 passengers, which proved even more satisfactory. However, the need for a new wing center section and new landing gear increased the cost.

To broaden the market base, it was then decided to offer two versions, based on the same fuselage but differing in range and payload: the Falcon 30, carrying 30 passengers 950 nm or 7,500lb of cargo, in compliance with US Part 298 regulations; and the Falcon 40, carrying 40 passengers up to 540-620 nm. The slightly larger Falcon 40 was offered in two versions at the Paris Air Show. Consideration was also being given to an 8/15-passenger VIP version.

The program attracted considerable attention from the press. Rumors were rife, with an order from TAT supposedly in the offing for its Strasbourg-Brussels route. However, the project was abandoned the following year after the prototype had logged about 60 flight hours. The oil crisis was looming, and the French authorities had asked Dassault-Breguet to look into possible cooperation on series production with Aerospatiale, which would build the fuselages. Orders are taken, but the program succumbed to the fuel crisis of 1973-74. The Falcon 30 episode was over.

Wingspan 18,03 m
Length 19,77 m
Cabin Diameter 8 feet
Wing area 49 m2
Empty weight 9 900 kg
Gross weight 16 000 kg
Max cruise speed 820 km/h
Economic cruise speed 710 km/h
Max range 1 400 km
Turbofans 2 Lycoming ALF 502D of 2753 kgp







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