Cessna’s Scorpion low cost tactical jet makes first flight

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

 

 

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About David Cenciotti 3633 Articles
David Cenciotti is a freelance journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written four books.