Israel and the USA have granted full certification for the Gulfstream G280, four years after the super midsize business jet was launched. Deliveries of the $24 million aircraft are set to begin in the fourth quarter of this year, with the first aircraft destined for an unnamed US manufacturer.
The Honeywell HTF7250G-powered twinjet received provisional certification from Israel in December 2011 and, in March this year, the Federal Aviation Administration also granted provisional approval saying a software update to the G280's flightdeck, featuring Rockwell Collins' new Pro Line Fusion, was the main item to be completed before final certification could be granted.
The G280 was introduced in 2008 as a replacement for the G200, formerly dubbed the Galaxy business jet. The aircraft rolled out under its own power on 6 October 2009, at Israel Aerospace Industries' facility near Tel Aviv. It made its inaugural flight two months later for 3h 21min, reaching an altitude of 32,000ft (9,760m) and a maximum speed of 253kt (468km/h). Three G280s participated in the flight-test programme, flying more than 2,150h during 794 test flights, says Gulfstream.
'The G280 has an all-new, advanced transonic wing design that has been optimised for high-speed cruise and improved takeoff field length performance. At its maximum take-off weight of 17,963kg (39,600lb), the aircraft offers a balanced field length of 4,750ft, an improvement of more than 1,300ft over the G200 and 210ft less than originally announced at the programme's outset," it adds.
The G280s are manufactured by Israel Aerospace Industries and shipped to Gulfstream's headquarters in Savannah, USA for completion. In July, General Dynamic chief executive Jay Johnson said the company plans to deliver between 15 and 20 midsize/super-midsize business jets this year.