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G250 has three-hour first flightG250 has three-hour first flight

Gulfstream Aerospace announced that its new super mid-size G250 business jet had its first flight Dec. 11. The three-hour, 21-minute flight took place at Israel’s Ben Gurion International Airport. For a first flight, the profile was impressive. The G250 was flown to 32,000 feet, and cruised at speeds as high as 253 knots. Tests included those of its flight-handling qualities, plus checks of several of the airplane’s systems. At the controls was Israel Aircraft Industries’ (IAI) Ronen Shapira. An on-board telemetry system relayed flight data in real time to flight test engineers on the ground.

Shapira said that the flight went well and was “extremely smooth with no issues,” according to a Gulfstream press release. “The G250 performed just as we expected,” said Pres Henne, Gulfstream’s senior vice president of programs, engineering, and test. “We’re looking forward to 2011 when we’ll begin delivering this aircraft to the customers who had tremendous input in its design.”

The G250 is being built through a partnership between Gulfstream and IAI. Performance targets for the jet include a range of 3,400 nm while flying at Mach 0.80; a max operating speed of Mach 0.85; and a max operating altitude of 45,000 feet. The cockpit features Rockwell Collins’ Pro Line Fusion avionics, which merges synthetic vision with infrared enhanced vision technology.

As for the cabin, the G250 has 17- to 35-percent more floor area than competing large-cabin, mid-range airplanes, a larger galley and lavatory, plus 19 windows and in-flight access to a 120-cubic-foot baggage compartment.

Thomas A. Horne

Thomas A. Horne

AOPA Pilot Editor at Large
AOPA Pilot Editor at Large Tom Horne has worked at AOPA since the early 1980s. He began flying in 1975 and has an airline transport pilot and flight instructor certificates. He’s flown everything from ultralights to Gulfstreams and ferried numerous piston airplanes across the Atlantic.

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