Textron has announced that Cessna Aircraft Scorpion Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR)/Strike aircraft has conducted its maiden flight on Dec 12.
The aircraft took off from McConnell Air Force Base in Wichita, Kansas and flew for 1.4 hours, conducting a series of handling maneuvers that proved the aircraft features an “impressive stability and responsiveness closely matching all of the predicted parameters for today’s maneuvers – it’s going to be a highly capable aircraft for the ISR and homeland security mission set.”
On its first flight the “affordable warplane for low-threat missions” was crewed by pilot Dan Hinson, a test pilot with over 5,000 flight hours in 79 different types of aircraft, and co-pilot David Sitz.
Announced in September and developed in 24 months, the Scorpion has a cruising speed of up to 450 knots, a ferry range of 2,400 NM (nautical miles) and carries a payload of 3,000 lbs internal stores as well as underwing PGMs (Precision Guided Munitions).
Image credit: Textron