Gulfstream launches systems testing with first G600 Iron Bird flight

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The Gulfstream G600 Iron Bird recently completed its first test flight on the ground rig at its Savannah, Georgia, USA, facility.

The Iron Bird test article is a spatially correct, dimensionally accurate structure that includes a flight deck and allows engineers to test the flight control and mechanical systems, including landing gear, brakes and hydraulics, in a ground-based lab.

During the 30-minute ‘flight’, the Iron Bird simulated taxi, take-off and landing, as well as maneuvers and transitions at altitude and airspeed.

“This first flight sets in motion the testing and validation required for the G600’s actual first flight,” said Dan Nale, senior vice president, Programs, Engineering and Test, Gulfstream.

“With the Iron Bird, we can confirm the characteristics of the system components, improve the integration maturity and make modifications, and provide those benefits in a lab environment, all while on the ground and still in the design stage to the benefit of the flight test aircraft. Having this resource enhances safety and streamlines the testing process.”

The G600, a longer-range version of the G500, will have a range of about 6,200 nautical miles (11,482km) at Mach 0.85, or 4,800 nautical miles (8,890km) at Mach 0.90.

The first G600 flight test aircraft and structural test article are in production. The aircraft is scheduled to enter service in 2019.

February 26, 2016

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