Test Fleet Has More Than 2,600 Flying Hours And 600 Flights
Gulfstream Aerospace Corp.’s G500 flight-test program continues to make significant progress toward the aircraft’s anticipated 2017 certification by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The five G500 test aircraft, including a fully outfitted production aircraft, have surpassed 2,600 flying hours and accumulated more than 600 flights.
“Development testing is complete; company testing is well under way, and FAA certification has started, putting us right on track for certification and customer deliveries later this year,” said Mark Burns, president, Gulfstream. “The maturity, discipline and rigor of our program give us great confidence as we look forward to our first delivery.”
Gulfstream designed the G500 interior after extensive customer feedback, and that collaboration continues. Recently, members of Gulfstream’s Advanced Technology Customer Advisory Team (ATCAT) spent an hour flying in the fully outfitted production aircraft, which serves as the test bed for the cabin.
“The feedback during and after these flights was extremely positive,” Burns said. “Our customers tell us that the added flexibility of the cabin, the comfort of our newly designed seats and the enhanced satellite communications will ensure that the G500 customer experience is second to none.”
The flight was an unforgettable one for ATCAT member Peter Zeeb, the director of maintenance for Oregon-based Ochoco Administrative Services, which operates three Gulfstream aircraft.
“Thank you for letting me have the opportunity to be part of the ATCAT program for the last six years,” Zeeb said. “I truly believe the G500 will be a game-changer for business aviation. The flight was a ‘career’ moment for me. I will never forget it!”
The G500 outfitted aircraft has flown more than 180 hours since its first flight Aug. 5, 2016. The other four flight-test aircraft have amassed more than 2,450 hours in the air. The first, which is focused on flight performance and flight controls, has exceeded 1,000 flight hours. It has also achieved a maximum speed of Mach 0.995 and a maximum altitude of 53,000 feet/16,154 meters. The G500 can fly 5,000 nautical miles/9,260 kilometers at Mach 0.85 or 3,800 nm/7,038 km at Mach 0.90.