The Gulfstream 200 was one of the first private jets in the Gulfstream series, jets that would become top competitors in the super-midsize category. The newly-formed Galaxy Aerospace Corp, a division of Israel Aviation Industries (IAI), became a major contender in the private jet category with the Gulfstream 200; this jet continues to compete today with the more recent G450 and G550. The Gulfstream 200 has everything that could be desired in a private jet: great range, cabin size, and speed. It’s the ideal jet for completing long-range missions rapidly and comfortably.
The cabin of the Gulfstream 200 can be configured to hold anywhere between eight and eighteen seats. The cabin itself is 24.4 feet long, 7.2 feet wide, and 6.3 feet high. Optional additions include a radio phone, entertainment systems, and interior design upgrades. There are power outlets available for any piece of office equipment in addition to an outlet for each passenger. There is 125 cubic feet of baggage space available in an external compartment, able to contain up to 2,400 pounds. An added bonus of the Gulfstream 200, having been designed in the extreme temperatures of Israel, is its capacity to maintain a cool cabin. According to Galaxy Aircraft Corp, the Gulfstream 200 can cool the cabin to 75ºF on a 113ºF day. Both the cabin and the cockpit have separate climate controls, and the air in the temperature control system continually provides the passengers with fresh air instead of recirculated air.
Two Pratt & Whitney PW306A engines power the Gulfstream 200, each flat-rated to 6,040 pounds of thrust. These engines are very similar to the PW305 engines used successfully on the Learjet 60 and the Hawker 1000. They have the same high standards of performance but put out 785 more pounds of thrust.
The Gulfstream 200 can climb directly to an altitude of 37,000 feet in nineteen minutes. For a long range cruise, it travels at 430 knots at an altitude of 41,000 feet; for a high speed cruise, it travels at 476 knots (.82 Mach) at 39,000 feet. The cabin is rated to 8.9 psi, meaning it can maintain a sea level cabin at 23,000 feet, or an 8,000 foot cabin at its maximum flight level of 45,000 feet. With a range of 3,910 miles (3,400 nautical miles), the Gulfstream 200 is ideal for long-range transcontinental or transoceanic missions.
The airframe of the Gulftstream 200 was designed to be as aerodynamic as possible with the help of 3-D computer-aided structural analysis programs. The main structures are made out of aluminum alloys, titanium, and steel; composites are used for some secondary structures. Fuel is stored in three fuel tanks – one on each wing and one in the belly of the aircraft. The fuel levels of the three tanks are automatically equalized by gravity interconnect valves.
The heavy load of the wings makes the Gulfstream 200 fly evenly in all conditions. A long-travel trailing link landing gear smoothes out taxiing and landings. Hydraulically-powered carbon anti-skid brakes and a 100º pivot radius of the nosewheel provide for excellent ground handling.
The required runway distance for takeoff at sea level is 6,083 feet with standard loading, or 6,342 feet when loaded to its maximum takeoff weight (MTOW) of 35,450 pounds. At an altitude of 5,000 feet and a temperature of 77ºF, the takeoff distance increases to 9,800 feet.
Galaxy Aerospace Corp selected the Collins Pro Line 4 avionics suite for the Gulfstream 200’s cockpit. A central EICAS (Engine Indicator and Crew Alert System) screen is surrounded by four smaller screens that display flight and systems information. Standard devices include dual ARINC 429 Pro Line Communication/Navigation/Identification radios with dual DMEs and ADEs, a single AlliedSignal GNS-X/EX FMS (Flight Management System), a WXR-840 solid-state weather radar diagnostic computer, digital autopilot, digital air data and attitude/heading reference system. Practically any additional equipment can be added if desired.
It’s not every day that an early-generation private jet turns out to be such a success, but the Gulfstream 200 is a definite exception to that rule. Few other super midsize private jets can fly eight passengers 3,680 miles (3,200 nautical miles) at .80 Mach. For that matter, few first-generation private jets are so reliable. The success of the Gulfstream 200 was unanticipated by the private jet industry, and continues to perform at high standards of excellence.