Cessna Selects Safran Silvercrest Engine for Large-Cabin Hemisphere

The 12,000-pound-thrust turbofan will power Cessna’s big bizjet starting in 2019.

Cessna Citation Hemisphere
The Safra Silvercrest engine will power the Cessna Hemisphere.Cessna

Cessna Aircraft’s selection of the Safran Silvercrest engine for the Hemisphere large-cabin business jet is a positive sign that technical issues with the 12,000-pound-thrust-class turbofan have been overcome after the engine triggered delays for the Dassault Falcon 5X twinjet program.

Cessna announced its selection of the Silvercrest engine at the NBAA Convention in Orlando, Florida, yesterday afternoon, pointing to the Safran turbofan’s excellent fuel economy (15 percent better than competing engines) and environmental friendliness as chief reasons why it beat out engines from rivals Pratt & Whitney Canada, Rolls-Royce and General Electric.

“Cessna’s decision to select the Silvercrest engine is a strong vote of confidence,” said Olivier Andriès, CEO of Safran Aircraft Engines in France. “It confirms our strategy of developing a brand-new engine purpose-designed for premium business jets.” The Silvercrest engine is now expected to be certified in early to mid-2018, ahead of the Falcon 5X’s planned entry into service in 2020.

The $35 million Hemisphere, which is scheduled to make its first flight in 2019, will also feature a full fly-by-wire flight control system supplied by Thales and Honeywell Primus Epic avionics, Cessna announced.