G650 Flight Testing Resumes


Certification flight testing of Gulfstream’s G650 resumed Saturday with an 89-minute flight of serial number 0001. It was the first flight of Gulfstream’s new flagship bizjet since the Apr. 2 crash of one of five test aircraft in Roswell, N.M., during takeoff performance testing. Gulfstream said the two-month suspension of flight testing will not affect its schedule for the aircraft. The flight test program is about two-thirds complete. Certification is planned by the end of this year and first deliveries are slated for 2012. Production continued after the accident and the 13th G650 is now under construction.

The NTSB investigation of the accident continues and Gulfstream is cooperating. The aircraft, serial number 0002, was taking off on one engine to simulate a failure on takeoff when it lifted off briefly, dragged the right wing and then slid along the runway. It was destroyed by fire.