Summer 2013 Vision SF50 Update

It has been some time since our last update and the progress we have to update is very exciting. In April 2012, we reported that the Vision program had been fully funded through first production. That important milestone started us on a clear development path, with the first delivery scheduled for late 2015. Since the last update, the jet has met the important milestones we’ve set, and we anticipate that we will continue on this course.

Cirrus Vision SF50 Personal Jet

Complete details for the information we have released about the Vision specifications are found here. However recall these important facts:

• High end cruise speed 300 KTAS will allow a range of about 1000 NM
• Best economy cruise at 210 KTAS will allow a range of 1200 NM with full fuel
• Stall speed in the 60s at landing weights enable use of runways similar to SR22
• Pressurized, spacious cabin with seating flexibility for up to 5 full size and 2 child size seats
• Fits in a standard 40 ft. hangar
• First delivery targeted for late 2015
• Options will include: weather radar, on board relief station, and upgraded interiors.

The next steps in the Vision program involve building conforming aircraft for further certification testing and preparing the Cirrus world headquarters for production. And finally, the Vision mock-up continues on its summer event tour, where you can get a close-up look at the fully redesigned interior of this spacious and luxurious aircraft.

Pre-Production Test Vehicles

The first verification vehicle, or V1, first flew in July 2008. Since that first flight V1 has been fulfilling its original purpose – to verify the design of the aircraft and answer specific questions about performance and design that allow us to build conforming vehicles. The data generated from V1 was used to finalize aerodynamic shape (Type Design or TD) shown below and the configuration was frozen in 2010. Since then, V1 had been used in other refinements and development tasks in Engineering Flight Test.  Some important milestones met by V1 in 2012 include:

• Pitot and Static sensor location
• Stall speed and Flap refinement
• FADEC to Avionics integration
• Continued natural icing testing
• Training familiarization and marketing demonstration flights
• Trim Optimization


From this point forward, V1 will serve a significantly reduced role in the Vision Jet development program. In 2014, we will introduce our next flight test vehicle, our first conforming jet (C0). A conforming vehicle means the aircraft is built and inspected to production drawings and built on production tooling using production processes. We will build three conforming vehicles in succession, which is typical of aircraft development.

The primary use of C0 will be performance verification, flying qualities certification and production tooling and process development. The next assembled flight article will be C1. It will be used mainly for aircraft systems development and certification plus refinement of production components and assembly planning.

The final flying article will be C2. This aircraft will enter the flight test program in the latter stages of certification and will reflect, as close as possible, the first production configuration aircraft in both equipment and manufacturing processes.

Production Planning

An integral part of building C0 includes building the production tools and preparing the facility for ultimate production of the Vision jets. Two exciting developments in production preparation include the installation of the massive fuselage lay-up mold in our Grand Forks, ND facility and the acquisition of the robotic trim and drill tool.

First Robot Facility Installed

The Cirrus Vision SF50 is the epitome of Cirrus innovation and it makes sense that the production process reflects the same progression known to Cirrus since the beginning.

The road to C0, the first conforming flight-test vehicle, requires the installation of production tooling that will be used to build production model jets for delivery. Tooling installation is well underway, with one of the most exciting new tools - the Robotic Trim and Drill Facility.

This 6-axis robot arm has a 10-foot reach, 40-foot rail (7th axis) and a lifting capacity of 180 pounds. It is fully enclosed with an automatic dust collection system and has a 40-tool automated tool changer.  A laser depth instrument and camera/vision system aligns parts while a vacuum table holds them in place during cutting.  Its primary use is for trimming and drilling composite parts.  It may also be used for indicating bond/inspection zones on parts and for milling master patterns for molds. However more importantly, it controls feed rates, penetration rates and spindle speeds to produce high quality holes and is accurate to thousandths of an inch over the entire envelope.

"This trim and drill robot will give Cirrus unprecedented capability in accuracy, speed and component-to-component fit compared to the industry standard template and fixture methods," stated Doug Griswold, Vice President Vision SF50 Program. "It is very flexible to accommodate design changes and eliminates the need to design and build hundreds of manual trim and drill fixtures."

Cirrus President, Pat Waddick adds, "Having produced aircraft of high quality for so many years now, we use what we've learned in building pistons to start with the right manufacturing process with the Vision jet. Investments like these ensure excellent quality, maximum efficiency and repeatability in the manufacturing process."

Fuselage Bonding Fixture Arrives

The first of nine total fuselage bond fixtures has arrived from the tool manufacturer in Michigan. This fuselage bonding fixture was developed in partnership with Odyssey Industries and took about seven months to complete detail design and fabrication of all the fuselage bond fixtures.  Transported on a semi truck, this 28 foot long, 6-ton fixture will be used beginning this month. The tool's oven also arrived on two additional trucks.

When all tooling is complete, the Vision fuselage production process will have:

• 5 major bond fixtures
• 4 smaller bond fixtures
• 163 layup molds
• 75 other small tools
• 1 robotic trim and drill fixture

New Vision Mock-Up Begins Summer Event Tour

The new full size Vision jet mock-up rolls off the production floor, ready for the upcoming event season. The Cirrus production specialists and design team worked with our suppliers  - SCS Interiors and Perrone - to completely redesign the interior of this mock-up. These new materials are indicative of those available in a new Vision jet in the near future.

See the full size Vision SF50 jet mock-up and learn more about the Vision SF50 during Oshkosh Airventure, July 29-August 4.

To reserve your position, contact your Regional Sales Director or call 218.529.7292.