|1991 Beechcraft Beechjet 400A - N916SB (sn RK-14)
Photo taken July 29, 2010
Oshkosh (EAA AirVenture Fly-in), WI - USA (OSH / KOSH)
|Photo © Marcel Siegenthaler
The Hawker 400 is a small twin-engine jet corporate aircraft. Initially designed and built by Mitsubishi, it has been further developed and updated by the Beech Aircraft Company, now part of Hawker Beechcraft.
Design and development
The aircraft was originally designed as the Mitsubishi MU-300 Diamond, an all-new, all-jet development to complement and slot above the Mitsubishi MU-2 and provide Mitsubishi Heavy Industries with their top-of-the-line corporate aircraft model (hence the name "Diamond"). The aircraft first flew on 29 August 1978. It is a small, low-winged twin-turbofan aircraft of all metal construction, flown by a crew of two pilots and accommodating eight passengers in a pressurised cabin. Its wings use a computer designed, supercritical airfoil in order to minimise drag. Its two Pratt & Whitney Canada JT15D turbofans are mounted on the rear fuselage.
Beechcraft bought the production rights and began manufacturing it as their own model, initially re-designated as the Beechjet 400. The Beechjet 400 was certificated by the Federal Aviation Administration in May 1986.
Raytheon/Beechcraft steadily developed their own improvements to the model, leading to the 400A in 1990. Improvements in the 400A include longer range, higher take-off weights and improved luxury appointments. An all-glass flight deck was also offered. Beechcraft also developed a version for the United States Air Force known as the T-1A Jayhawk, used as a trainer for large aircraft crews (such as tankers and strategic transports). A total of 180 T-1A trainers were delivered between 1992 and 1997. Another military variant is the Japan Air Self-Defense Force 400T trainer which shares the same Type Certificate as the T-1A.
In 1993 Raytheon purchased the Hawker business jet product line from British Aerospace. The Beechjet 400 was eventually renamed the Hawker 400 to map it into the Hawker product line. The Hawker 400XP incorporates further aerodynamic, mechanical and interior improvements gleaned from the Hawker 800XP.
In October 2008, Hawker Beechcraft announced upgrades to the design, resulting in the new model designation Hawker 450XP. Upgrades were to include new, more fuel efficient engines (Pratt & Whitney PW535Ds with 2,965 pounds of thrust each). The Hawker 450XP was canceled in June 2009 due to poor economic conditions.
Nextant Aerospace developed a program to remanufacture the Beechjet 400A, replacing the Pratt & Whitney engines with Williams FJ44s, plus a new avionics suite and interior, among other improvements. The remanufactured aircraft, called the Nextant 400XT, received FAA certification in October 2011.
- Mitsubishi MU-300 Diamond I
Initial model. Two prototypes and 89 production aircraft built.
- Mitsubishi MU-300-10 Diamond II
Improved version of Diamond I; 11 built, all subsequently redesignated as Beechjet 400s.
- Beechcraft Model 400 Beechjet - (Serial # RJ-1 thru RJ-65)
Version of Diamond II built after Beechcraft bought the production rights to the MU-300 from Mitsubishi, 54 built in addition to 11 Diamond IIs.
- Model 400A Beechjet - (Serial # RK-1 thru RK-353)
Upgraded model, initially produced as the Beechcraft Beechjet 400A, then Raytheon Beechjet 400A. 353 Built.
- Model 400A Hawker 400XP - (Serial # RK-354 thru RK-604)
Produced as the Raytheon Hawker 400XP, then Hawker Beechcraft Hawker 400XP. 251 Built.
- Model 400T
Military version of the Model 400A, 180 built for the United States Air Force as the T-1 Jayhawk and 13 built for the Japan Air Self-Defense Force.
- Hawker 400XPR
A factory engineered and supported upgrade to this aircraft, with new avionics, interior, and Williams FJ44 engines.
The type is used by many corporate and private users, it is also used by air-taxi and air charter companies. NetJets Europe operates a fleet of 27 Hawker 400XPs.
Specifications (Beechjet 400A)
Crew: 2 pilots
Capacity: 7—9 passengers
Length: 48 ft 5 in (14.76 m)
Wingspan: 43 ft 6 in (13.26 m)
Height: 13 ft 11 in (4.24 m)
Wing area: 241.4 sq ft (22.43 m²)
Empty weight: 10,050 lb (4,558 kg)
Useful load: 5,850 lb (2,653 kg)
Max. takeoff weight: 16,100 lb (7,303 kg)
Powerplant: 2 × Pratt & Whitney Canada JT15D-5 turbofan, 2,900 lbf (12.9 kN) each
Maximum speed: 468 knots (866 km/h, 539 mph) (Mach 0.78 MMO)
Cruise speed: 443 knots (820 km/h, 510 mph) at 23,000 ft (7,000 m)
Stall speed: 92 knots (171 km/h, 106 mph) (full flaps)
Range: 1,693 nmi (3,135 km, 1,949 mi) at 45,000 ft (13,700 m)
Service ceiling: 45,000 ft (13,700 m)
Rate of climb: 3,770 ft/min (19.2 m/s)