Cessna Aircraft Company, a subsidiary of Textron Aviation Inc., a Textron Inc. (NYSE:TXT) company, today announced it has recently received certification for and is now offering hard point provisions for the Cessna Grand Caravan EX. These hard points expand the aircraft’s versatility by allowing operators additional mission capabilities such as extended range with additional fuel tanks, increased cargo space, agricultural operations and the ability to configure the aircraft for missions that require armament. The company will be displaying a mock-up of a Grand Caravan EX wing with hard points at the Farnborough International Airshow the week of July 11.
“It’s essential that we continue to tailor solutions for our special mission operators’ needs. The hard point wing structure furthers the Grand Caravan EX’s already legendary versatility by adding more mission flexibility to the platform,” said Tom Hammoor, president, Textron Aviation’s defense company. “The Caravan platform is operating in many special mission roles around the world and accounts for a large percentage of our worldwide Caravan fleet.”
The Grand Caravan EX is particularly well suited for a wide array of operations due to its spacious and easily reconfigurable cabin, high useful load of more than 3,500 lbs. (1,588 kg), large cargo door and the ability to operate from short, unimproved surfaces. These aircraft continue to succeed in a variety of special mission applications, including aerial survey, air ambulance, amphibious operations, surveillance, training and utility/transport.
Cessna currently offers the Caravan and Grand Caravan EX with the option to modify both models with floats for amphibious operations. The fleet of more than 2,500 Caravans is now certified in 100 countries with more than 13 million flight hours amassed since the aircraft was introduced. Caravans fulfill roles for multiple missions, ranging from flight training to recreation, commuter airlines to VIP transport, cargo carriers and humanitarian missions.
Textron Aviation offers the largest lineup of special mission platforms in the industry, with the entire product range of Beechcraft and Cessna products available in special mission configurations. From piston-engine to turboprop aircraft, and even Citation jets, Textron Aviation can provide a customized aviation solution for nearly any mission profile.