UNITED24 - Make a charitable donation in support of Ukraine!


Gulfstream V

Certified by the FAA in April, 1997, the Gulfstream V business jet is the first aircraft of its kind in the world. With unmatched performance, comfort and speed, the Gulfstream V has a range that is 50% greater than any other business jet currently in service. The Gulfstream V can carry eight passengers and a crew of four non-stop distances up to 6,500 nautical miles at speeds up to Mach .88. The V is designed to cruise routinely at 51,000 feet.

It has a superior cabin environment with a 100 percent fresh air ventilation system, customized interiors, and the company's oversized signature oval windows offering panoramic views. Virtually all of business jet aircraft have wing spans of less than 79 feet with the exception of two aircraft, the Bombardier BD-Global Express with a wing span of 94 feet and the Gulfstream V with a wingspan of 98.6 feet.

Premier Executive Transport Services owned a Gulfstream V that acquired the nickname "The Guantanamo Bay Express" because it was used in the transport of Al Qaeda suspects from locations in Europe and the Middle East. Initially registered as N379P, it later changed registration from N379P to N8068V. The aircraft was sold by Premier Executive Transport Services Inc to two Limited Liabilities companies: Bayard Foreign Marketing, and Keeler and Tate Management.

Extraordinary rendition is the secretive practice of extra-judicial transfer of detainees to foreign governments for interrogation, usually because the foreign governments are willing to use harsh interrogation techniques, including torture, which would not be legal in the United States. U.S. diplomats and intelligence officials, speaking anonymously, have repeatedly confirmed that rendition is a continuous practice and, if anything, it has increased since September 11.

Due to the sensitivity of abducting defendants from a foreign country, prosecutors may not take steps to secure custody over persons outside the United States (by government agents or the use of private persons, like bounty hunters or private investigators) by means of Alvarez-Machain type renditions without advance approval by the Department of Justice. Prosecutors must notify the Office of International Affairs before they undertake any such operation. If a prosecutor anticipates the return of a defendant, with the cooperation of the sending State and by a means other than an Alvarez-Machain type rendition, and that the defendant may claim that his return was illegal, the prosecutor should consult with OIA before such return.

The Gulfstream V set 47 world and national records in the first eleven months of service since receiving final certification on April 11, 1997, consisting of 22 city pair speed records and 25 performance records. These records include: the first-ever nonstop flight from New York to Tokyo by a business jet; a climb to 51,000 feet in just over 15 1/2 minutes; and the first-ever nonstop business aircraft flight between Washington, DC, and Dubai. The Gulfstream V has made non-stop travel between cities such as Tokyo and Washington, London and Beijing, Los Angeles and Moscow routine business.

The Gulfstream V achieved these records while overcoming such challenges as using a new airframe with a new engine. And the project stayed fundamentally on schedule. By listening to customers throughout the production of the Gulfstream V, Gulfstream showed its commitment to superior service.

The story of this aircraft's production fits well in America's heritage of bold, entrepreneurial risk-taking. When Gulfstream first decided to pursue this project in the early 1990s, it was a relatively small, privately held company, and the Gulfstream V carried with it significant financial risks. Instead of backing down in the face of economic adversity, Gulfstream launched a series of partnerships under revenue-sharing agreements that allowed the Gulfstream V to become a reality.

Gulfstream employs 5,800 people at five locations. The Gulfstream V is completed at the Long Beach facility. The Collier Trophy brings a well-deserved honor to all of Gulfstream's employees.

Gulfstream had been aggressively studying applications of winglets in the late 1970s (contemporary with Lear activities) and incorporated winglets in its line of business jet transports including the Gulfstream III, Gulfstream IV, and Gulfstream V. The performance of the Gulfstream V has been spectacular. Its operational range of 6,500 nmi at a cruise Mach number of 0.80, and cruise speed capability up to Mach 0.89, permits routine nonstop business travel for routes such as New York-Tokyo. The Gulfstream V also holds over 70 world and national flight records.

Small, trapezoid-shaped, fin-like devices placed on the flaps of aircraft wings are increasing performance, reducing noise and saving fuel. Called Micro-Vortex Generators, or Micro VGs, they are simple, inexpensive and relatively easy to install on new or existing aircraft.

As air normally flows over the wing of an aircraft in flight, the air "sticks" to the surface of the wing. This adherence to the wing's surface produces lift. If the airflow loses its adherence and separates from the wing, aircraft performance can suffer in the form of increased drag, loss of lift and higher fuel consumption. Researchers at NASA Langley Research Center developed Micro VGs to control this flow detachment by producing miniature, controlled tornadoes, called "vortices". The Micro VGs sweep away uncontrolled airflow separation over the airplane's wings and flaps with the benefit of reduced drag and increased lift (i.e., less engine power needed to produce the same lift).

In addition to contributions to the designs of commercial transport aircraft, the NASA Langley-developed Micro VGs are also being used by at least two General Aviation aircraft: the Gulfstream V and Piper Malibu Meridian. The Gulfstream V was able to achieve a higher maximum cruise speed, extend its operational range and exhibit better controllability by using Micro VGs on its outboard wings. This enhanced flight capability of the aircraft allowed Gulfstream to meet their technical goals and assure a successful product.

The Gulfstream V aircraft was named the winner of the 1997 Collier Trophy presented by the National Aeronautic Association (NAA). This acknowledgment is no ordinary, run-of-the-mill trophy. It is the aviation's most prestigious award. The trophy honors the year's top aeronautical achievement in the United States. The NAA specifically recognized Gulfstream and the Gulfstream V Industry Team "for successful application of advanced design and efficient manufacturing techniques, together with innovative international business partnerships, to place in customer service the Gulfstream V." Gulfstream and the Gulfstream V industry team were recognized specifically `for successful application of advanced design and efficient manufacturing techniques, together with innovative international business partnerships, to place into service the Gulfstream V--the world's first ultra-long range business jet.' Past winners of the award include Orville Wright, Neil Armstrong and the Apollo 11 flight crew, Charles E. `Chuck' Year and United States Senator John Glenn.

The Gulfstream V was recognized as one of the `Ten Most Memorable Flights in 1997' by the National Aeronautic Association on the flight from Washington, D.C. to Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The flight was 6,330 nautical miles and took 12 hours and 40 minutes. It flew non-stop.

The European Joint Aviation Authorities, or JAA, represent the civil aviation authorities of several European states, which have agreed to cooperate in developing and implementing common aviation safety regulations and procedures. However, the JAA, because of its close relationship with the European aviation industry, also works to promote the aviation industry of its member states. As a result, the JAA often acts more like a trade association than a regulatory agency.

The bureaucratic hassle that Gulfstream has endured in its attempt to get JAA approval for the Gulfstream V is a prime example. The Gulfstream V is an award winning aircraft that has accumulated considerable service experience. Yet, Gulfstream has spent over five million dollars since 1994 in pursuit of JAA approval of the Gulfstream V.

Because of the thoroughness of the FAA's certification process, JAA approval is simply supposed to be a validation, or "audit", of FAA's work. Therefore, manufacturers do not have to bear the expense and delay of a second certification program. But, that is exactly what the JAA has turned its approval process into - a second certification program. In fact, the JAA gives little recognition to the work of the FAA.

In regard to the Gulfstream V, Gulfstream has expended over 20,000 engineering man-hours and one million dollars in direct user fees in pursuit of JAA validation. Unlike the FAA, which has established a long working relationship with Gulfstream (as well as other U.S. manufacturers), the JAA is unfamiliar with Gulfstream and team members have little or no detailed knowledge of Gulfstream's design philosophy or service history. As a result, little or no credit is given for the successful service history of designs carried forward from previous Gulfstream models. Although the JAA should rely on their FAA counterparts for this information, it does not.

Gulfstream has been very cooperative with the JAA. They have invested hundreds of thousands of man-hours. They have also made changes to the Gulfstream V to resolve concerns of the JAA. These changes, which were otherwise unnecessary, were made in the spirit of cooperation and compromise to move the validation process forward. Yet, Gulfstream estimates that it will take another five years, and millions more dollars, before the JAA approval is granted to the Gulfstream V. In the meantime, sales of the aircraft in Europe are being lost to foreign competitors.

Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation announced that the Gulfstream V, the world's first ultra-long range business jet, had been selected by the United States Air Force (USAF) for the VC-X program to expand the mission capability of the nation's Special Air Mission Wing. The selection by the USAF marked the first sale of the ultra-long range Gulfstream V to the military and opened this market worldwide for similar applications of this new aircraft. The military version of the Gulfstream V business jet is used to transport the nation's leaders.

Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list