Gulfstream V-SP First Flight

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||| |---|---| | | | On the last day of August, Gulfstream made the first flight of its G-V-SP four weeks ahead of schedule. During the two-hour, six-minute flight, the flight test crew (John O'Meara, captain; Tom Horne, copilot; and Bill Osborne, flight test engineer) took the airplane to its ultra-long-range cruise speed of Mach .80 and to 41,000 feet. O'Meara reported that "the aircraft handled even better than we anticipated."

The G-V-SP has greater cabin volume than the G-V, allowing for an additional living area with seating for four. In all, the new airplane will seat 16 passengers, with berths for up to eight. It also features improved performance, with a greater range at higher speeds and a shorter required field length.

During the first flight the pilots tested the new Honeywell PlaneView cockpit, which features large flat-panel displays, Honeywell's Visual Guidance System head-up display, Gulfstream's cursor control device and an enhanced vision system. Gulfstream calls the avionics suite "the most advanced flight deck in commercial aviation."