Gulfstream G650 Closing in on Certification
- Test Fleet Has Completed Aircraft-Level Testing
Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) pilots have completed all the scheduled flying required for the certification program for Gulfstream Aerospace Corp.’s ultra-large-cabin, ultra-long-range Gulfstream G650. In addition, the European Aviation Safety Agency test team finished the flight testing required for its validation of the FAA’s type certification.
The G650 received a provisional type certificate from the FAA on Nov. 18, 2011, and is in the process of completing the final certification tests with the FAA to support entry-into-service later this year. As of July, the test fleet had flown more than 3,800 hours during more than 1,160 flights.
The final certification tests included completing the field performance tests, evaluating the aircraft’s performance in natural icing conditions and conducting function and reliability testing.
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“These aircraft are accumulating considerable flight time and are returning with minimum aircraft issues,” said Pres Henne, senior vice president, Programs, Engineering and Test, Gulfstream. “The maturity of this program gives us the assurance that the aircraft we deliver to our customers will be of the highest quality standards expected from a Gulfstream.”
The aircraft already has set two city-pair speed records. It flew from Burbank, Calif., to Savannah in just 3 hours and 26 minutes. The aircraft accomplished this at speeds between Mach 0.91 and 0.92, with a brief segment at the aircraft’s maximum operating Mach number of 0.925. Its average ground speed was more than 550 knots. Its maximum ground speed en route was more than 660 knots.
The second city-pair record came when the aircraft made its first trans-Atlantic crossing, flying from Washington, D.C., to Geneva at speeds from Mach 0.90 to Mach 0.92. The aircraft made the journey in 6 hours and 55 minutes.
Source : Gulfstream Aerospace Corp.