Business jet the Pilatus PC-24 has made its first ever landing on an unpaved runway, as part of a programme of post-certification tests with special emphasis on unpaved runway operations. Pilatus intends to acquire ‘rough field’ certification in the final quarter of this year. It is currently spending two weeks at Woodbridge Airfield to the north east of London, UK to test the PC-24’s landing and take-off capabilities on the airport’s unpaved runway.
The Super Versatile Jet was designed for off-road operations, and an impressive degree of flexibility and new opportunities are afforded by its outstanding performance on short unpaved runways. “What a picture – the PC-24 in the toughest conditions, using an unpaved runway for the first time! This sort of mission would not be conceivable without the PC-24’s rugged landing gear, clever flap systems and special wing design. The PC-24 was designed with exactly this sort of operation in mind – that’s Swiss engineering at its very best,” said Oscar J. Schwenk, Chairman of Pilatus.