By ADJ Team
TOKYO/WICHITA: Textron Aviation Inc has delivered the first two Cessna Citation Latitude aircraft configured for flight inspection missions. The aircraft were delivered to Kanematsu Corporation and will be owned and operated by the Japan Air Self-Defence Force (JASDF) to ensure the integrity of instrument approaches and airway procedures that constitute the national airspace of Japan. A third aircraft is anticipated to be delivered in early 2021.
Fitted with UNIFIS 3000 Flight Inspection System equipment from Norwegian Special Mission (NSM), the aircraft will provide flight inspection missions through the periodic evaluation of navigational aids, such as flight procedures and electronic signals, to ensure that they are safe and accurate. The aircraft will be operated by the Flight Checker Squadron, a JASDF unit based at Iruma Air Base in Saitama Prefecture north of Tokyo. Kanematsu Corporation has electronics and aerospace segments within its group of companies, according to its website.
“Flight inspection has long been a vital part of providing a safe air transportation system. The Latitude’s long range, large cabin and class-leading performance ideally suits it for the flight inspection mission. We’re proud the JASDF selected the Cessna Citation Latitude, the best-selling midsize jet, in support of its flight inspection mission,“ said Bob Gibbs, vice president, Special Mission Sales for Textron Aviation in a late April statement.
The Latitude, with a four-passenger range of 2,700 nautical miles (5,000 km) at high-speed cruise, is set apart from the competition by its combination of comfort and efficiency. The aircraft’s class-leading take-off field length of 3,580 feet provides operators with greater range out of short fields.
Textron Aviation’s aircraft provide the high performance and flight characteristics required to address the unique challenges of special missions and operations, a company statement said. With unparalleled quality, versatility and low operating costs, Textron Aviation products are preferred for air ambulance, ISR, utility transport, aerial survey, flight inspection, training and a number of other special operations.