Second Gulfstream G650 takes flight

Washington DC
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Gulfstream's second G650 test aircraft - designated T2 (N652GD) - made its first flight from Savannah/Hilton Head International airport on 25 February with pilots Gary Freeman and Scott Buethe at the controls.

The aircraft reached an altitude of 37,000ft (11,280m), a speed of Mach 0.8 and flew for 2h 33min. This is the second of five flight-test aircraft that will be used during the certification programme and will focus on testing the aircraft's systems during the 1,800h flight-test campaign. The first aircraft, T1 (N650GA), has amassed more than 43h over 18 flights since it first flew on 25 November.

T3, when it joins the flight-test programme, will focus on testing the G650's avionics, while P1 and P2 - production standard aircraft - will be used to evaluate the cabin systems and reduced vertical separation minimums, respectively.

The G650 is scheduled to receive US and European certification in 2011, leading to first deliveries in 2012.

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