NASA´s Langley research center has scheduled the flight of the HondaJet, a new light jet, to fly into Langley´s Hampton, Virginia laboratory on July 12, the center said.
The company said light jets were developed in part with the help of research done more than 10 years ago by NASA´s Advanced General Aviation Transportation Experiments alliance and its follow-on, the Small Aircraft Transportation System project, both led out of NASA Langley. Those public-private partnerships advanced affordable new technologies, operating capabilities and industry standards, design guidelines, and certification for next-generation single pilot, near all-weather light airplanes.
Light jets are a new class of airplane, designed to carry four to seven passengers and be fast, safe, reliable and able to use very small airports.
Honda Aircraft Company, headquartered in Greensboro, North Carolina, contracted with NASA Langley to use one of its transonic wind tunnels during the jet´s research and development phase. Honda used a 1/9th-scale model of the jet for tests in the National Transonic Facility. Honda engineers used the data to assess high-speed flight performance for the HondaJet´s new concept configuration, the over-the-wing engine mount.
The light jet incorporates advanced technologies and concepts that reduce drag and decrease fuel consumption. Those include the engines mounted above the wings, a natural laminar flow wing and a composite fuselage. It also features a NASA Langley innovation–upturned wing tips known as winglets that also help reduce drag and increase fuel efficiency.