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On the morning of Day 10 the three member crew — Captain Bill, Flight Engineer Mark, and assistant navigator John — departed Fort Lauderdale – Hollywood International Airporton the last leg of our 5,000 mile journey and climbed to 41,000 feet in about a half hour. From that point, we were able to fly non-stop to Danbury, Connecticut (KDXR) and land with 493 pounds of fuel on board. The range and performance of the Embraer Phenom 100 far exceeded my expectations. At cruise we were burning 76 gallons of fuel per hour. By aviation standards this is very efficient. Our speed varied but likely averaged above 375 mph.
The winds aloft were highly variable with a constant crosswind from the west that reached as high as 137 knots. At times, we had a headwind component, and at times a tailwind component, with the overall average probably netting out to zero. However, the strong crosswind component required that the plane crab into the wind by as much as 19 degrees. This meant we were tracking northbound over the ground with our nose pointed west. Airplanes like to fly straight and the significant crab angle is not good for efficiency, making the non-stop performance all the more impressive.Once we got to the New York area, there were quite a few vectors due to traffic. We experienced moderate turbulence as we came down from high altitude and the winds on the field were gusting at more than 30 miles per hour. It was quite bouncy, but Captain Bill greased the plane onto the ground very smoothly. The Phenom 100 — tail # N784JP — continued on to Dayton, Ohio where it will spend a few weeks at Stevens Aviation for the installation of some additional features.
Phenom N784JPSpeaking of Captain Bill, I must say that the services, advice, flight planning, and piloting skills provided by Bill Minkoff and Mark Stear of JetQuik were superb. I got to know them really well during our extended (partly unplanned) stay in Sao Jose dos Campos. On a scale of 1 to 10, I would rate them an 11. There is much to share about what happened between Day 1 and Day 10. Stay tuned.
There are quite a few pictures and movies of Embraer people and jets in the Photo Album – there are many more and at some point I will get them organized. Note that the Phenom tail # of the plane we flew back was PT-TGX for the first month or so of it’s life. (All Brazilian airplanes have a tail # starting with PP, PR, PT or PU. All American airplanes start with N, dating back many years to the Air National Guard.) An alcohol wipe of the engine covers on October 1 (Day 4) removed the PT-TGX letters and revealed the permanent tail # of N784JP.