Home' Asian Aviation : AAV Feb 2014 Contents AsianAviation | FEBRUARY 2014 65
At MTOW (maximum takeoff weight) the
Sovereign can get airborne from a ground roll as
little as 3,640ft and land on a stretch of tarmac
as little as 2,650ft (at Maximum landing Weight).
However, its performance in the air is equally
impressive. The Sovereign has a service ceiling
of 47,000ft and a maximum speed of Mach 0.8
(458kt). Three highly efficient design characteristics
facilitate this: the aircraft's gently swept, high-
aspect ratio wings, its two powerful rear-mounted
Pratt & Whitney PW306C turbofan engines and its
phenomenal power to weight ratio.
With an ability to reach such lofty heights, it made
perfect sense for Cessna to marry it with an equally
impressive ability to fly far - which the Sovereign can
do. The aircraft's maximum range is 2,847nm, so non-
stop sectors such as: Melbourne - Perth, Singapore
- Hong Kong, Bali - Manila, or even Bali - Melbourne
are all a breeze for the mid-size Citation jet.
"If we get up to the north-west coast somewhere,
like Port Hedland or Karratha, there's no problem
hopping fairly deep into South East Asia from there,"
"So in that respect, we're basically one stop into
Asia... We'd refuel, clear Customs, then you're
straight into Indonesia or somewhere else in the
South East Asian area. Whether it's domestic or
mid-range work, the Sovereign's ideal for the region."
And the chief pilot would know, having logged
thousands of hours on several types of Cessna
jets, ranging from the Cessna Citation 500, 550
and 560 series of aircraft to various twin turboprop
corporate aircraft. Anderson added the Sovereign
was frequently dispatched around the country to
pick up passengers, who required the convenience
of a corporate aircraft transport that wasn't
restricted by the inflexible and rigid timetables that
The Executive Airlines Sovereign could fly
anywhere in Australia, pick up as many as eight
passengers and fly them virtually anywhere on the
continent. In that sense, the company's ethos of
being a premium business and private aircraft charter
provider is enhanced by having the Sovereign on its
books. Incidentally, Executive Airlines also operates
a Cessna Citation II 'Bravo' to augment its business
and charter services, which also includes private and
business jet management, FBO, a large exclusive
use ramp, to engineering and maintenance.
However, besides its well-respected ground-
based range of services, it was the Sovereign that
provided the company with its prestige and strong
performance, air-side; something not lost on the
quietly spoken chief pilot: "I think the Sovereign's
unbeatable in the mid-size category. It's the best in
its class for the type of work we do."
Anderson said the company's work consisted of
"a mixture" of business, which included the mining
industry, tourism flights for foreign tourists, plus
private charter within Australia. He elaborated by
saying the Sovereign had been used for direct flights
ranging from Launceston to Groote Eylandt in the
Gulf of Carpentaria, Bali to Melbourne and even
Perth to Singapore during the aircraft's tenure with
the company. It has also been used to fly to such
destinations as New Zealand, Tahiti, Japan, India, the
UK and Africa.
Anderson, who possesses a keen eye for what
constitutes a good aircraft, said the Sovereign's
ease of operation, reliability and strong performance
were some of the factors distinguishing it from the
From a strictly pilot's point of view though,
Anderson, who is obviously extremely fond of the
Sovereign, said it handled superbly in turbulence,
which was a bonus for passengers ensconced in the
cabin: "It's very stable and feels solid in turbulence
with the recommended turbulence penetration speed
aligning closely with the cruise speed."
However, his final comments about the Sovereign
were perhaps the best endorsement an aircraft could
ever hope to get, which related to its safety -- an
uncompromising aspect of air travel.
"The aircraft has always been terrifically reliable.
We've had few problems with it - it's just a great
With such words of praise, the Cessna Citation
Sovereign is obviously quite a majestic performer.
In keeping with its name, the aircraft undoubtedly
holds a commanding place in the mid-size business
jet category. ✈
Cessna Citation Sovereign cabin
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