The Epic E1000 prototype FT1 took its first flight of 20 minutes on December 19, 2015, from the Bend Municipal Airport in Oregon, USA. The builder, Epic Aircraft, has a certification program which it hopes will lead to achieving a Type Certificate so it can begin customer deliveries this year.
FT1 testing will continue for several months, assessing general handling qualities, operational performance, systems operations in normal mode, failure scenarios, extreme conditions, and flight into known icing (FIKI) regulations.
The second flight test article, FT2, should be finished in spring 2016 and ready for its first flight. It is to be close to a production aircraft in both equipment and manufacturing techniques. FT2 testing will focus on assessing interior and cabin functionality, including fuel, hydraulic, avionics, navigational and environmental systems.
The E1000 is built of carbon fiber to be lighter, stronger, more aerodynamic and less expensive to manufacture. Low weight should provide more speed, range, payload, and performance for the six-place single-engine turboprop. With a 1200hp Pratt & Whitney PT6A-67A turbine engine, speeds of 325 KTAS are hoped for as well as a range of 1,650 nautical miles and a ceiling of 34,000ft.
January 8, 2016