During more than 15 hours of flying, the aircraft achieved a top speed of Mach 0.80 and a maximum altitude of 38,500 feet/11,735 meters. The aircraft’s longest flight was more than four hours, the company reports.
The aircraft has been undergoing planned modifications in preparation for returning to flight later this month.
“The first five flights exceeded our expectations,” Dan Nale, senior vice president, Programs, Engineering and Test, Gulfstream, said in a prepared statement. “And they demonstrated that our testing facilities on the ground are having very real benefits in the air, allowing us to identify and address issues before they’re ever seen in flight.”
Gulfstream announced the G500 and G600 family of aircraft on Oct. 14, 2014.
As the first G500 flight-test article undergoes modification, two more are preparing for flight and a fourth is in production. Additionally, the first G600 flight-test aircraft has begun the initial stages of production, the company says.
The G500 has a range of 5,000 nautical miles/9,260 kilometers at Mach 0.85 or 3,800 nm/7,038 km at Mach 0.90, while the G600 can carry passengers 6,200 nm/11,482 km at Mach 0.85 and 4,800 nm/8,890 km at Mach 0.90, the company adds.
The maximum operating speed for both aircraft is Mach 0.925, the same maximum speed as Gulfstream’s G650 and G650ER.
Gulfstream anticipates certification of the G500 in 2017, with entry into service in 2018. The G600 certification is slated to follow in 2018, with entry into service in 2019.
(Carla Caldwell - Atlanta Business Chronicle)