Gulfstream adds fourth G500 test aircraft


Development of the Gulfstream G500 large-cabin, long-range business jet took another major stride toward certification on February 20, 2016, following the roll-out of the fourth test aircraft. T4 took-off from Gulfstream’s headquarters in Savannah, Georgia, USA, and climbed to 51,000ft during its 3h 17min flight, reaching a maximum airspeed of 340kts (630km/h), or Mach 0.925.

“The crew exercised all primary flight control systems, performed functional checks of air data and cabin pressurization systems, and completed a series of engine performance measures,” Gulfstream said.

T4 will be used to test avionics, flammable fluid drainage, lighting and fire protection, and water ingestion and select systems, including water/waste. The Pratt & Whitney Canada-PW814GA-powered aircraft will also perform flight standardization and operations evaluations.

Aircraft T1, meanwhile, is focused on envelope expansion; T2 on flight loads validation as well as aircraft performance and systems testing; and T3 is the testbed for the G500’s Symmetry flight deck – powered by Honeywell’s Primus Epic system.

The fifth and final aircraft, P1, will join the program shortly. As the first production aircraft, it will be used for interior and cabin systems testing.

The G500, with a range of 5,000 nautical miles(9,250km), is scheduled for US certification and service entry in 2017. Its longer-range stablemate, the G600 – which was launched simultaneously – is earmarked for validation and first deliveries in 2018 and 2019, respectively.

February 26, 2016

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