TYPE: Two-seat lightplane.
PROGRAMME: Launched 1981 with objective of producing first all-composites light aircraft in Australia; single-seat POC (proof-of-concept) aircraft now displayed at Power House Museum, Sydney; construction of two-seat preproduction prototype Eagle X started fourth quarter 1987; first flight (VH-XEG) second quarter 1988, with 58 kW (78 hp) Aeropower engine, replaced later by 74.5 kW (100 hp) Continental O-200; 200 hour test programme, meeting all original design criteria, completed by October 1988; plans for 1989 production start aborted; component manufacture began March 1991; production prototype (PPT1/VH-XEP) made first flight 6 November 1992; weight-restricted certification by Civil Aviation Safety Authority of Australia (CASA) 21 September 1993; European JAR-VLA certificate not awarded at that time and aircraft consequently redesigned with changes including IO-240-B engine; increased span and chord on foreplane and mainplane flaps; redesigned and repositioned wing cuffs, with leading-edge extension outboard; vortex generators and repositioned horizontal stabiliser.
Series production in Australia, as Eagle X-TS, launched August 1993; first flight (VH-AHH) 23 October 1993 and first customer delivery December 1993 (VH-FPO to Department of Conservation and Land Management in Western Australia). Initial production in Australia only, but using some components manufactured by Eagle Aircraft (Malaysia) of which Eagle Aircraft Pty Ltd was a wholly owned subsidiary. First aircraft completed from Malaysian components (VH-PMI, c/n MA 00001) made maiden flight 27 March 2001. In December 2001 it was announced that production was moving to Malaysia and operations in Australia were being run down; this was achieved in late February 2002 and type certificate revised to show change of manufacturer on 28 February 2002.
First Series 150 (converted production prototype VH-XEP) rolled out August 1997; certified on 13 November 1997 by CASA to JAR-VLA standards at MTOW of 640 kg (1,411 lb); this certification also valid in Malaysia.FAA certification achieved 11 February 1999, followed by New Zealand approval in mid-1999; also approved in Thailand; JAA certification expected in 2002. First night VFR instrumented aircraft certified and delivered in December 2000.
CURRENT VERSIONS: Series 100: Retrospective designation of former Eagle X-TS; production completed. Total of 10 built, of which five converted or undergoing conversion to Series 150 by late April 1998.
Series 150: Current production version, designated 150A with IO-240-A engine and 150B with IO-240-B. Engines have same maximum power of 93.2 kW (125 hp) but B version has increased mid-range power of almost 29 per cent to 69.4 kW (93 hp) and is 3.7 per cent quieter than A model. Available in Basic, Training and Executive variants, as below. US production devoted to 150B version only.
Basic: Standard Series 150 version; as described.
Training: As Basic, with addition to tachometer, turn co-ordinator, directional gyro, digital clock, cockpit internal lighting, transponder, nav/com/VOR, navigation and landing lights and Eagle external pinstriping and decals.
Executive: As Training, plus GPS moving map display, mainwheel spats, leather upholstery, cabin heater, baggage bins, sun visor and chart pocket.
Eagle ARV: Optionally piloted surveillance version (Aerial Reconnaissance Vehicle), co-developed by CTRM with BAE Systems Controls of California, which supplies complete modification kit including flight management system, sensor payload, datalink and ground control station. First three-aircraft system delivered to Royal Malaysian Air Force in late 2001.
CUSTOMERS: Ten Series 100/Eagle X-TS built, including two for Malaysia (c/n 0003 and 0005) and one for John Ronez in USA (c/n 0010); five conversions (c/n 0002/3/5/7/8) to Series 150.
Series 150 operators include: Aerostaff (one), Australian Flying Training School (one), DTIL New Zealand (one), Guernsey Aviation USA (two), HGL Aero of Kansas, USA (28), Horizon Airways (one), International Aviation and Travel Academy USA (two), Malacca Flying Club Malaysia (three), Perak Aero Club Malaysia (one), Phoenix Aviation (two), Royal Queensland Aero Club (two), Tanjung Flying Club (one), Troy Aviation (one) and Victoria Civil Aviation Academy (three).
By January 2003, production (including Eagle X) totalled 46 in Australia (including two prototypes) and three in Malaysia. Two delivered to USA in 2002.
COSTS: Basic Eagle 150B US$119,000. Training US$124,400, Executive US$129,500 (all 2000). Total maintenance cost US$9.98 per hour over 2,000 hours' utilisation (2003).
DESIGN FEATURES: Intended primarily for ab initio training, recreational flying and surveillance. 'Tri-surface' configuration, with high-mounted mainplane, large low-mounted foreplane, and tailplane. Stall strips on foreplane ensure that it stalls before the mainplane.
Mainplane of tailored Ronez aerofoil section, thickness/chord ratio 16 per cent; no sweep; no dihedral.
FLYING CONTROLS: Conventional and manual. Slotted ailerons on mainplane, elevators on tailplane, and rudder, all with normal manual/mechanical actuation. Aileron travel +25 to -20°; elevator +25 to -24°; rudder ±23°. Pushrods on ailerons and elevators, cables on rudder. Electric pitch trim (tab in starboard elevator), manual roll trim; rudder tab. Electrically actuated single-slotted flaps on foreplane (full span; travel 0 to 35°) and mainplane (part span; range of travel +3° up to 38° down). Leading-edge stall strips, vortex generators and fences on mainplane, stall strips on foreplane. Flap and airflow control systems designed to achieve low stalling speed with relatively high wing loading, to provide good ride quality in turbulence.
STRUCTURE: Except for metal engine mounts and flight control rods, Eagle 150 built entirely of composites, with 90 per cent of structure bonded/assembled by EAM. Wings, fuselage and all control surfaces are Nomex honeycomb or high-density foams, sandwiched between multiple layers of carbon fibre; Kevlar reinforcement around wing leading-edges and shoulder of mainplane; cockpit is impact-resistant capsule of multilayered Kevlar and carbon fibre; carbon fibre spars. Entire structure uses Eagle-designed vinylester resins for strength/longevity/impact resistance and to minimise 'wet environment' problems inherent in standard epoxies.
LANDING GEAR: Non-retractable tricycle type, with glass fibre/epoxy self-sprung main legs and oleo nose leg. Choice of Cleveland or McCreary 5.00-5 wheel on each unit, with optional speed fairings. Cleveland hydraulic single-disc brakes on mainwheels. Castoring nosewheel, size 11x4.00, with Chensin tyre. Minimum ground turning radius 5.21 m (17 ft 1 in). Brakes applied by pressure on rudder pedals. Twin landing lights in nosewheel fairing.
POWER PLANT: One 93.2 kW (125 hp) Teledyne Continental IO-240-A or IO-240-B7B flat-four engine (see Current Versions above); respectively driving a McCauley 1A135BRM7054, 1A135CRM7057 or 1A135DRM7057 two-blade fixed-pitch metal propeller. Trials with MTV-7-D/175-112 three-blade propeller under way in early 2001. Fuel capacity 102 litres (26.9 US gallons; 22.4 Imp gallons), of which 97 litres (25.6 US gallons; 21.3 Imp gallons) are usable. Oil capacity 5.7 litres (1.5 US gallons; 1.3 Imp gallons).
ACCOMMODATION: Two seats side by side with Y-shape control column operable from either seat. Adjustable rudder pedals. Bubble canopy hinged at front and opens upward. Four-point safety harnesses. Hat shelf and two baggage compartments.
SYSTEMS: Hydraulic system for manual brake actuation only; 12 V DC electrical system with 60 A alternator.
AVIONICS: Standard avionics suite as described below. Optional equipment as detailed under Current Versions. Night VFR package also available.
Comms: VHF com, intercom and ELT standard.
Instrumentation: ASI, altimeter, tachometer, oil pressure/temperature gauge, fuel pressure gauge, fuel quantity gauge, voltmeter/ammeter, OAT gauge, magnetic compass, pitch trim indicator, engine hours meter and flight hours meter.