Built by Scaled Composites under contract to William, the Williams V-JET II made its first flight on April 13, 1997
NASA has hard partnered with the general aviation industry in introducing the V-JET II, a turbofan-powered light aircraft designed for future flight testing. It was expected to revolutionize and revitalize general aviation with a safer, smoother, quieter and more affordable light aircraft.
NASA awarded Williams International a 37 million dollar developmental grant to design and build such a small jet engine.
Burt Rutan and his Scaled Composites had been contracted to built V-JET II (in reference to the earlier version Sam Williams had introduced in the mid-80). While the overall configuration had been created by Sam Williams, it was up to Burt and his staff to do the detail design work and then execute it in the new, patent-pending composite construction method Scaled Composites has developed.
A the time of its first flight on April 13,1997, the VJET II was powered by two Williams International FJX-1 turbofan engines.