Major milestone reached as GE-powered agricultural aircraft continues to be a favorite with both pilots and operators worldwide.
(Albany, GA) As the Thrush factory’s large delivery hangar doors slid open to begin another day – a new 510G sat at the front of the space, sunlight glinting off its wings. Although the aircraft’s distinctive red and white company livery looked similar to other 510G’s coming off the assembly line, this one was quite special – as it was the 100th 510G to be completed by Thrush since the aircraft received FAA certification in 2012.
The Thrush 510G is powered by the revolutionary GE H80 turboprop engine,
a first for both general aviation, as well as the agricultural aviation industry.
The H80 is lighter, more powerful, and more fuel efficient than competitive engines, and it has the ability to produce its full-rated 800 shp at high altitudes and field elevations. Combined with the Thrush 510 airframe and designated the Thrush 510G, the aircraft has quickly become a favorite among pilots – especially those working in hot and high conditions. And, with its higher cruise speeds for increased productivity, no hot section inspection requirement, and a TBO of 3,600 hours, it has proven to be extremely popular with operators as well.
Thrush 510G’s are now working in twelve countries worldwide, and the fleet has accumulated over 63,000 flight hours to date.
The 100th Thrush 510G is being delivered to Mid-Continent Aircraft Corporation in Hayti, Missouri where it will quickly be put into service beginning with this year’s spring and summer spray seasons. In addition to providing aerial application services to growers and ranchers in the region, Mid-Continent is also a highly regarded factory-authorized Thrush dealer and service center. Agricultural aviation legend Dick Reade founded Mid-Continent Aircraft in 1949, and continues at the company’s helm today.
“I couldn’t think of a better person to receive our 100th 510G than Dick Reade,” said Payne Hughes, president of Thrush Aircraft. “Not only has his company and its staff provided our customers with outstanding support over the years – but his observations and advice have been invaluable to me and to Thrush as we’ve grown the company and our product line to meet the needs of agricultural aviation operators worldwide” he continued.
Like its sister aircraft, the Thrush 510P, the 510G has a hopper capacity of 500 gallons, a certified gross operating weight of 10,500 pounds, and is available in both single and dual cockpit configurations. Research and development of the aircraft and its GE engine continues at the factory, with additional refinements anticipated in the years ahead.
“We’re very proud of the relationship between GE Aviation and Thrush,” said Mr. Hughes. “Both of our companies are committed to continuing to bring the best flying, most highly advanced, and most capable aircraft to the agricultural aviation industry,” he continued. “The first 100 510Gs have proven to be every bit of that and more,” he added, “and I can promise the next 100 will be even better.”
About Thrush Aircraft Company
Headquartered in Albany, Georgia, Thrush Aircraft manufactures a full range of aerial application aircraft used in agriculture, forestry and fire fighting roles worldwide. Founded in 2003, Thrush is well-known for building the most durable aircraft in the aerial application industry, as well as the best flying – from both pilot and operator perspectives. All Thrush models provide superb visibility, light control response, and a high degree of maneuverability and speed, along with superior efficiency and low direct operating costs. Today there are more than 2,100 Thrush aircraft operating in some 80 countries around the world.