The Embraer E-Jets are a series of narrow body, twin-engined, medium range, jet airliners produced in Brazil. Announced at the Paris Air Show in 1999, and entering production in 2002, the aircraft have been a success – as of December 31, 2008, there are 876 firm orders for E-Jets and 810 options. The manufacturer reports 410 units had been delivered by June 30, 2008, and predicts that by the end of 2016, another 1,112 units will be delivered.
Design and development
The Embraer E-Jets line is composed of two main commercial families and a business jet variant. The smaller E-170 and E-175 make up the base model aircraft, with the E-190 and E-195 being stretched versions, with different engines and larger wing and landing gear structures. The 170 and 175 share 95% commonality, as do the 190 and 195. The two families share near 89% commonality, with identical fuselage cross-sections and avionics, featuring the Honeywell Primus Epic EFIS suite.
Although commonly referred to with simply an "E" prefix, the jets are technically still Embraer Regional Jets ("ERJ"s). Embraer dropped the ERJ prefix in its advertising early in production. The E-190/195 series of aircraft have similar capacities to the initial versions of the DC-9 and Boeing 737, which have always been considered mainline airliners. Embraer developed an innovative "double-bubble" design for its commercial passenger jet airplanes that provides stand-up headroom. Embraer E-Jets use four-abreast seating.
The launch customers for the aircraft were the French Regional Airlines with ten orders and five options for the E-170, and the Swiss Crossair with an order for 30 E-170s and 30 E-190s. The largest single order for any type of E-Jets has come from JetBlue with 100 orders for the E-190, and options for 100 more. JetBlue set the record for the longest flight of the E190 family on November 6, 2008, when aircraft N239JB made a non-stop flight from Anchorage, Alaska (ANC) to Buffalo, New York (BUF), a total of 2,694 nautical miles. This was an empty aircraft on a non-revenue flight, the aircraft eventually returning to JFK after a two-month long charter service with Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin.
The E-170 family is the smaller of the two, competing with regional aircraft such as the Bombardier CRJ-700/900, Bombardier Q400 and the Sukhoi Superjet 100. It also seeks to replace the market segment occupied by earlier competing designs such as the BAe 146 and Fokker 70. The 170 and 175 are powered with GE CF34-8E engines of 13,800 pounds (61.39 kN) thrust each.
The Embraer 170 was the first version produced. The prototype was rolled out on 29 October 2001, with first flight 119 days later on February 19. The aircraft was displayed to the public in May 2002 at the Regional Airline Association convention. After a positive response from the airline community, Embraer proceeded with the launch of the stretched E-175 in June 2003. Certification for the 170 took nearly 2 years after the public debut; delivery of the first aircraft to the launch customer LOT Polish Airlines was in March 2004.
The E-190 family is a larger stretch of the E-170 model fitted with a new, larger wing and a new engine, the GE CF34-10E, rated at 18,500 lb (82.30 kN). Being in the 100-seat range, it competes with smaller jets including the Bombardier CRJ-1000, Boeing 717-200 and 737-600 as well as the Airbus A318.
The first flight of the E-190 was in March 2004, with the first flight of the E-195 in December of the same year. The launch customer of the E-190 was New York-based low cost carrier JetBlue with 100 orders and 100 options. European low cost carrier Flybe launched the E-195 with 14 orders and 12 options.
As the 190/195 family is of mainline aircraft size, many airlines will operate them as such, fitting them with a business class section and operating them themselves, instead of having them flown by a commuter airline partner. For example, Air Canada operates 45 E-190 aircraft fitted with 9 business-class and 84 economy-class seats as part of their primary fleet.
Embraer Lineage 1000
On 2 May 2006 Embraer announced plans for the business jet variant of the E-190. This would have the same structure as the E-190, but with an extended range of up to 4,200 nm, and luxury seating for up to 19. The Argentinian Air Force ordered one for VIP purposes.
Published - July 2009
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