All posts tagged 'Gulfstream' - Page 2

Gulfstream to add 1,000 to workforce

Those in southeast Georgia who anxiously wondered what would come from “Project X,” a year-old rumored development from Gulfstream Aerospace, can now rest easier. Meanwhile, economic and political leaders will probably consider popping corks on bottles of champagne.

During an announcement in Savannah this morning that included Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue, Gulfstream said it will add 1,000 jobs in production and engineering as it expands its offices and facilities in the area.

A report on the Savannah Morning News web site said today’s announcement is a $500 million, seven-year deal that will increase the Gulfstream employee roster by 15 percent.  

The news provides another bubble of warmth within a cool economy that has seen several other aircraft manufacturers announce job cuts in recent months and comes with cheers from local leaders, who say the expansion by the area's largest employer with spur additional economic activity in the region.

Ultra-large jets and orders of new aircraft increased in the latter part of 2010, while Gulfstream reported a growth in revenue. The company was one of several aircraft makers to begin rolling out larger, faster business jets during the recent trend. During testing, its ultra long-range G650 recently earned the title of fastest civilian aircraft.

What's next from Bombardier? Will it be a revamped XRS? Some say yes, some say no

Bombardier could announce plans for a new ultra long-range business jet, maybe as soon as the NBAA convention next month. At least that is what a few people of note in the aviation world have said.

Company officials told Aviation International News this week that they will not comment on rumors or speculation, but that has not stopped some in the industry from doing just that.

Not all opinions align though on what will happen next, or exactly what aircraft will emerge from Montreal.

Differing opinions on the speculation after the jump. [more]

In an article released this week, AIN’s Chad Trautvetter spoke with George Tsopeis, VP of aviation services for Zenith Jet.

Tsopeis predicted a new offering from Bombardier to compete with the Gulfstream G650, and he “strongly believes” it will be a modified Global XRS with the same Rolls Royce engine as the G650, along with a newer, lighter interior and upgraded wings.

Under Tsopeis’ speculation, such a model could reach customers by 2013, sooner and cheaper than rolling out a new model, and in time to jockey for orders with the new Gulfstream.

Read the full article here.

Aviation Week’s Fred George posted a differing opinion today to the Super XRS theory on the Business Aviation Now blog. He cites unnamed “company insiders” who say, in his words, “that’s just not going to happen.”

Subtle ushering from company representatives to potential customers has focused on Project 170, a larger, 7,000 nm, .85 Mach cruise successor to the Global Express, according to George.

This model could be certified by as soon as 2016, he says.

Read the full article here.

Regardless, an announcement of some sort in the not-too-distant future probably will happen, as Bombardier positions itself to compete for its share of $208 billion in new jets to be delivered this decade, as Zenith Jet predicts in an AIN article written by Trautvetter earlier this month. It says more than half of those sales will consist of large, ultra-large and long-range aircraft.

Read that full article here.

Gulfstream G650 nears speed of sound, earns title of fastest civilian jet

Courtesy of Gulfstream

The Gulfstream G650 neared the speed of sound in flutter testing this week, hitting Mach 0.995, and established itself as the fastest civilian aircraft on the planet.

In achieving the speed, test pilots Tom Horne and Gary Freeman, joined by flight test engineer Bill Osborne, took the aircraft into a dive where the nose of the aircraft pitched 16 to 18 degrees below the horizon, Gulfstream said in a statement.

Flutter designers applied a range of vibration frequencies during the dive on the tail, wing and flight-control surfaces to make sure the plane could naturally dampen them without further action from the pilots. The company said the aircraft performed “flawlessly” during the test. [more]

A photo of the three-member test crew on the Gulfstream web site this week showed each of them beaming smiles and  flashing thumbs-up gestures. 

Since the G650 flight-testing program began in November 2009, four airplanes have completed 575 hours in more than 170 flights. The entire testing phase will span 1,800 hours.  

“The airplane is very predictable,” Horne said. He is the senior experimental test pilot for Gulfstream. “It’s very easy to control and to get precise control at those speeds. The airplane response has matched the expectations of our engineers, and we’ve been able to easily fly the test conditions and march through the test plan.”

The ultra-large cabin, ultra-high speed G650 will carry eight passengers and a four-person crew on 7,000 nautical-mile legs at Mach 0.85. The company says it can cover 5,000 nautical miles at Mach 0.90.

Various floor plans can accommodate up to 18 people, according to the company web site, which dubs the G650 “the fastest, widest, longest business jet”

Technological features built into the aircraft will include a Planeview II avionics suite, featuring a Triplex flight management system, 3-D weather radar, automatic emergency descent mode, Head-Up Display (HUD) II and Enhanced Vision System (EVS) II, among other features.

Morning Rundown: more EBACE, more volcano, Gulfstream news and new NOTAM system

The aviation world's spotlight continued to shine on Europe Wednesday, despite the layers of ash in the upper atmosphere.

David Learmount of Flight Global echoed the recurring theme reported most everywhere from EBACE this week -- that recovery in the industry will come at a slow pace. It focuses on comments from Richard Aboulafia, chief analyst of the Teal Group, and says return to robust activity in aircraft sales may not arrive in full until 2012. 

Jeremy Cox of Jetbrokers, Inc., reports directly from EBACE on his blog. He says a lobby bar during the first night was packed with people eager to make deals.

Cox also mentions that the Gulfstream G650 gained the title of world's fastest business jet. Flying at Mach 0.925 on Sunday, it strips the ranking from Cessna's Citation X.

Gulfstream chief Joe Lombardo spoke at EBACE on how European growth has helped solidify the business jet market and, in what has become a secondary theme at the convention, he looked forward to growth in developing nations. A decade ago, there were only 27 Gulfstream aircraft in Asia. That number stands at more than 100 today. 

The other emerging story in Europe was the return of the volcanic ash that shut down air travel throughout the continent last month. This time, though, the effects have been more localized.

Ryanair canceled its flight between Malta and Edinburgh on Wednesday. Airports in Ireland and Scotland reopened this morning as the ash moved west.

While most of the news in aviation took place across the Atlantic, there were a couple developments of interest announced in the U.S.

The FAA announced a digital NOTAM system going live in Atlantic City. The link in the prior sentence includes details on the system. Other airports to join the program in the next round are Washington Dulles, Reagan National, Baltimore-Washington International, Richmond, Norfolk, Denver, Chicago O’Hare and Midway, Memphis, Fairbanks, Alaska and Ft. Wayne, Ind.

In a final note, NASA tested an astronaut escape rocket for its Orion spacecraft in New Mexico this morning. It was a success that "went like clockwork," even as the future-of-space-travel program itself is being restructured. 


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