Home' Asian Aviation : AAV May 2011 Contents 16 AsianAviation | MAY 2011
Amsterdam-based Rekkof Aircra
-- which trades as NG Aircraft
-- expects to involve Tier 1
aerostructures companies in its
planned re-engined development
of the Fokker 100 (F100) regional
jet, says Chief Executive Maarten van Eeghen.
The company has enlisted the help of Fokker
Technologies, the former Stork Aerospace group that
includes Fokker Aircra Ser vices, which is responsible
for worldwide F100 eet support. e latter is seen
very much as the "housekeeper" of all things F100
and provides a link with the original design.
Rekkof Aircra has a strong relationship with
Fokker Technologies, which has been involved in
the project for some time. Indeed, former Fokker
100 chief engineer Rudi den Hertog has joined
the company, having retired in 2009 from Fokker
Technologies, where he oversaw Fokker airliner
engineering and support, which Stork had taken over
a er manufacturer Fokker Aircra collapsed in 1996.
Production of the F100, a re-engined development
of the Fokker F.28, ceased with the Dutch
manufacturer's bankruptcy. Production tooling and
exclusive rights to manufacture new-build F100s
were then obtained by Dutch entrepreneur Jaap
Rosen Jacobson, who formed Rekkof ("Fokker" spelt
backwards) in 1997.
In March this year, Rekkof Aircra announced a
Memorandum of Understanding with the Brazilian
state of Goias. e local government, which wants to
set up its own aerospace industry, will provide around
US$720 million for the construction of a factory
at Anapolis airport. Jacobson has now established
Rekkof Industrial do Brasil (Rekkof Brasil) as a South
American subsidiary that would own the plant, which
will make F100NG sub-assemblies and parts. No
other subsidiary companies are planned.
Rekkof is emphasising the extensive "green"
credentials of the F100NG design, which bene ts
from the original aircraft's inherent low weight,
which company sources claim will be "almost
3,000kg (6,600lb) less than an Embraer E-190". With
110-passengers ying over a 500 nautical-mile sector,
Rekkof says the F100NG will o er per-seat direct
operating costs (DOCs) just 4 percent above those of
a 156-seat Airbus A320, while trip DOCs are put at
"more than 35-percent better" than the larger aircra .
Plans for the revival received a boost in November
when the European Commission (EC) approved a
US$27 million repayable Netherlands government
loan toward the US$120 million cost of Phase 1
development. is work covers modi cation of the
Rekkof-owned Fokker 100 prototype as a proof-of-
concept (POC) ying testbed that will include new
engines, modern avionics, higher fuel capacity and
new winglets for enhanced cruise performance.
e POC airframe is scheduled to y in about two
years' time, following a 22-month development phase,
and Rekkof is expecting the F100NG to enter ser vice
in mid-2016. e ight-test schedule incorporates
three phases: initial ights with the new engine's full-
authority digital engine control (FADEC) system
linked to the F100 digital ight deck, will be followed
by testing of a new auxiliary power unit before further
ights are made with a modi ed avionics t.
Ahead of any formal agreement with Rolls-Royce,
Rekkof o cials decline to comment on their preferred
engine for the F100NG. e company is believed
to have chosen the UK manufacturer's BR725
powerplant, which also powers the Gulfstream
G650 business jet. Gulfstream is understood to have
supplied two BR725s to Rekkof.
Van Eeghen says Fokker Technologies is "very
active" in the Fokker 100NG design project and
"quite heavily" involved in development of the
proof-of-concept airframe as a leading third-party
engineering contractor. He says the original aircra 's
"straight" engine nacelles have been enlarged to
accommodate a higher-diameter fan. It also may have
been lengthened by about 500mm (20in) to decrease
Seen from the front, the engine pylons have
been canted upwards 15-20 degrees (relative to the
aircra centre-line) as Rekkof seeks minimum drag
around the airframe/pylon interface at higher angles
of attack. In March, NG had still to nalise winglet
considerations, as it sought to trade additional range
against air eld performance.
Introduction of smaller and lighter modern
avionics means Rekkof can o er increased under- oor
cargo space, equivalent to saving one avionics rack,
van Eeghen says. Possible repositioning of avionics
equipment in any related Rekkof development of
the smaller Fokker 70 may permit that model to
accommodate 85 seats.
Fokker had studied various stretched projects,
such as the F100 Extended Capacity, Fokker 125 and
Fokker 130. Van Eeghen acknowledges that such a
variant could be "a lot lighter than a [Bombardier]
CSeries 300", but no development is currently being
considered. e initial planned model is seen as
offering the F100's optimal wing/cabin capacity
"We are putting all the [F100NG] pieces of the
puzzle together [and] many are in place ; there are
some major [elements still] to be agreed," concludes
the Rekkof chief executive. n
'Fokker Technologies is "very active" in the Fokker 100NG
design project, according to Rekkof.'
Ian Goold / London
Rekkof says the F100NG will offer per-seat direct operating costs
(DOCs) just 4 percent above those of a 156-seat Airbus A320.
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