How far can smaller jets fly

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I've read that the Boeing 747's can fly around 7,000 nautical miles.
How far can a single engine plane, and multi engine small jet fly.
How many miles? Can they fly across the ocean to another country? Ben

-- Benjamin Hall, March 26, 2006


We spent this afternoon at an airplane museum in Liberal, Kansas. They had a Piper Comanche single-engine piston airplane there that had been loaded up with a ferry tank (remove the rear seats; put fuel in instead) and flown from Morocco to Los Angeles and still had enough fuel to go 500 more miles. It was something like 5000 nautical. Single-engine pistons with ferry tanks are just about the longest range aircraft until you get up to the big jets. The new Diamond DA42 with its twin diesel engines has tremendous range throttled back. It has flown the Atlantic with no ferry tank.

The small bizjets have fairly poor range due to the fact that small jet engines are so wasteful of fuel. The bizjets that are less than $10 million can usually only fly around 1000 nautical miles with adequate reserves for instrument flying. That's why corporate executives love to dip into the shareholders' pockets and buy themselves Gulfstreams, which do have 747-like ranges (for only a little more capital cost than an old 747 and a little less hourly cost).

-- Philip Greenspun, March 26, 2006