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Sunday, January 25, 2015

Iconic Planes: Learjet 60

Which movie multi-millionaire, hero or villain, would be complete without a Learjet 60? The Learjet 60 is one of the world's most recognized and widely-known private jets. This plane is one of the many private jets developed by Bombardier Aerospace.
 
The 60 is actually an improved version of the Learjet 55, and sports a longer seating area, improved control during landing and take off, reduced drag along the fuselage, and new engines, among other things. Also, a Learjet 35 empennage was attached to the 60's fuselage. The Learjet 60 is powered by two Pratt and Whitney Canada PW305A turbofan engines, and these required new pylons on the wing as this model was not used on the Learjet 55. (Above right): A Learjet 60 climbing.
 
Bombardier.svgThe Learjet 60 has the fastest time-to-climb performance, climbing to 41000 feet fully loaded in 18/5 minutes. However, this aircraft holds the record for the most accidents, most of which have occurred on landing. According to the NTSB (National Transportation Safety Board) though, most of them were caused by pilot error and were not technical faults. (Above left): The logo of Bombardier Aerospace, manufacturer of the Learjet 60.
 
The Learjet 60 has now been replaced by the Learjet 60XR, which is now being produced instead of the 60. The 60's production stopped in 2007 after 314 aircraft were built.
 
The 60 is used by a variety of operators, from governments to companies to small jet operators and yes, even by billionaires. However, at its price tag of 13.3 million dollars for each 60, not everyone can afford this plane.
 
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