There’s a New Bird in New Hampshire’s Skies


The first PC-24 on display at the PlaneSense Headquarters in New Hampshire

There’s a new bird in the air over the New Hampshire Seacoast region, and soon it’ll be spreading its wings across America. The first production Pilatus PC-24 was feted at the PlaneSense® Inc. company headquarters at the Portsmouth International Airport at Pease on Thursday, February 8, 2018 after being delivered to the fractional ownership company at a ceremony at Pilatus’s Broomfield, Colorado facility the day prior. A week earlier, the jet had departed the Pilatus factory’s airport at Stans, Switzerland, bound for North America.

The PC-24 has been dubbed “The Super Versatile Jet” (SVJ) by the manufacturer, for good reason. The new jet aircraft can access more than 8,300 airports in North America, far and above the total of its next competitor. Design innovations allow the PC-24 to access shorter runways, both paved and unpaved, with the use of a robust trailing link landing gear design with a dual wheel main landing gear with low-pressure tires and large brakes. For departure, Williams International has included a proprietary engine cowling design of the exhaust nozzles that achieve a small amount of thrust vectoring.

Pilatus has equipped the jet with a side cargo door, similar to that found on the popular PC-12 turboprop, and the interior layout can configured with a wide range of options, from ten seats to none – in a full cargo configuration – or a combination of both. PlaneSense will operate their PC-24s in the eight-seat executive arrangement.

The manufacturer touts the interior of the jet as in “a class of its own” – called The Crystal Class after the stunning Swiss Alps rock crystals, and featured amenities like on-board Wi-Fi and digital climate control will be aboard the PlaneSense aircraft. Thirteen large windows help illuminate the cabin with natural lighting, and a fully flat floor, without the common steps and protrusions found on other jets, offers more leg room and comfort.

The first  PC-24 Super Versatile Jet approaches the Portsmouth International Airport at Pease

The design features the advanced Pilatus ACE™ (Advanced Cockpit Environment) avionics system that can support the SmartView™ Synthetic Vision System. The aircraft is powered by twin Williams International FJ-44-4A jet engines with the innovative “Quiet Power Mode ™” that eliminates the need for an auxiliary power unit or ground power cart.

PlaneSense has six PC-24s on order, the second is expected to join the operator by the end of 2018. Company literature states that “The PlaneSense fractional program was founded in 1996, with a strong belief that there was a smarter way to fly privately. The PlaneSense program offers aircraft share owners notable aviation experience combined with a proven commitment to safety, service, and excellence”. Additionally, it was “Founded on a passion for aviation and a belief in better solutions for private travel, PlaneSense, Inc. has been a leading provider of private flight and fractional aircraft ownership for more than twenty years. The program has grown steadily and soundly to become the world’s largest civilian fleet of Pilatus PC-12s”.

Pilatus PC-12 of PlaneSense


Nextant 400xti of PlaneSense

The PlaneSense fleet has grown to three dozen PC-12/47 and PC-12/47E (NG) aircraft. It also operates four Nextant 400xti jets, which are upgraded Beech/Hawker/Raytheon 400 twinjets. These aircraft routinely fly in the eastern half of the United States, and parts of Canada, the Bahamas and some areas of the Caribbean. To learn more about PlaneSense, visit .


The First PC-24 was delivered from Stans, Switzerland via Broomfield, Colorado

For more about the Swiss manufacturer Pilatus, here’s part of their press release from the PC-24 delivery ceremony: “Founded in 1939, Pilatus Aircraft Ltd is the only Swiss company to develop, produce and sell aircraft to customers around the world: from the legendary Pilatus Porter PC-6 to the best-selling single-engine turboprop in its class, the PC-12, and the PC-21, the training system of the future. The latest development is the PC-24 – the world’s first ever business jet for use on short unprepared runways. Domiciled in Stans, the company is certified to ISO 14001 in recognition of its efforts for the environment. The Pilatus Group includes two independent subsidiaries in Broomfield (Colorado, USA) and Adelaide (Australia). With over 2,000 employees at its headquarters, Pilatus is one of the largest employers in Central Switzerland. Pilatus provides training for about 120 apprentices in 13 different professions – job training for young people has always been a very high priority at Pilatus”. For more about the company, visit:

Ken Kula

Assignment and Content Editor, writer and photographer A New Englander all of my life, I've lived in New Hampshire since 1981. My passion for all things aviation began at a very early age, and I coupled this with my interest of photography during college in the late 1970s. I spent 35 years in the air traffic control industry, and concurrently, enjoyed my aviation photography and writing adventures, which continue today. I've been quite fortunate to have been mentored by some generous and gifted individuals. I enjoy contributing to this great site and working with some very knowledgeable and equally passionate aviation followers.

You may also like...