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MILITARY TECHNOLOGY (MILTECH) is the world's leading international tri-service defence monthly magazine in the English language. MILITARY TECHNOLOGY is "Required Reading for Defence Professionals". Follow us on Twitter: MILTECH1

17 June 2015

Paris Air Show 2015: Gulfstream Details Special Missions Platforms

Nearly 200 Gulfstream aircraft in 37 countries operate in support of government and military service special missions, including roles as head-of-state transports, airborne early-warning systems, and in support of international atmospheric data that, according to the company, had never been obtainable before a specially modified Gulfstream G550 went into service.

Israeli Air Force Gulfstream G550 SEMA (Special Electronic Missions Aircraft) by Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI). (All photos via Gulfstream)

Since 1967, Gulfstream has been honored to serve all five branches of the US military and other government agencies. Gulfstream aircraft have been used to train astronauts to fly the space shuttle and US Navy A-6 crews as navigators, and as platforms to help hurricane hunters track storms. Gulfstream aircraft provide on-demand dependability, speed and range, configurations and role flexibility and operation capabilities under extreme conditions. Those performance attributes for decades have made Gulfstream aircraft a great choice for special missions platforms. In the US, Gulfstream aircraft account for the majority of all large-cabin business jets delivered to the government since 1967.

Gulfstream has long maintained a Special Missions Programme Office, staffed with programme managers and project engineers with a unique understanding of and expertise in fulfilling the most demanding requirements, whether from domestic and international governments or defence contractors. Once a customer’s mission parameters are defined, Gulfstream’s programme office coordinates aircraft modifications and the installation of state-of-the-art equipment to meet specified purposes. Gulfstream’s ability to modify airframes to unique special mission specifications is the result of decades of experience - the platform matters.

Since 1967, when the US Navy selected the Gulfstream I  as the standard weapon system and navigational trainer for its A-6 crews, Gulfstream aircraft have been recognized as the definitive choice for special missions platforms. Today, more Gulfstream aircraft perform in government and military service than any other large-cabin business jets in the world. Nearly 40 countries operate Gulfstreams, including 27 that use the aircraft to transport their heads of state. Within the US, Gulfstream aircraft account for most of the large-cabin business jets delivered to the government since 1967. The aircraft’s performance and reliability have earned Gulfstream the distinction and privilege of serving all five branches of the US military.

Recent missions include Special Electronics / Signals Intelligence (SIGINT), Airborne Early Warning, Open Ocean / Coastal Surveillance and SAR, Medical / Critical Care Evacuation, High Altitude Atmospheric Research, Government Executive Transport / HOS, Priority Personnel and Cargo / Multi-Function, Coastal Watch and Fisheries Patrol, as well as Airways Navigation Qualification, Hurricane Research and Tracking, Tactical / Optical Reconnaissance, High Density Seating / Cargo Door / Convertible, and Utility / Target Tow.

Japan Coast Guard GV.
Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI)  ELTA has installed its ELW-2085 third generation of Conformal Airborne Early Warning and Control (CAEW) system on a modified long-range, high-performance and low operating cost Gulfsteam G550 business jet. The integrated sensor suite, together with a powerful communication system, support a variety of missions such as: Long-range Air Surveillance, Airborne C4I for Air and Naval Operations, Airborne Command and Control Post, Network Centric Warfare Operations, and Communication Node.

The Gulfstream G550 large-cabin, ultra long-range (6,750nm) business jet can, according to IAI, fly higher than any commercial jet modified to carry out AEW missions. Advanced, low drag conformal installation enables higher loitering altitude for long-range detection of low altitude targets. The scheduled maintenance of the G550 CAEW aircraft is mostly accomplished in parallel to its operation, thus supporting high operational availability and low operating cost. The CAEW integrates the data of the onboard sensors (Radar, IFF, ESM/ELINT, CSM/COMINT, SPS/RWR) with the theatre situation picture via high capacity multiple datalinks. IAI/ELTA systems have extensive experience in integrating tailor-made CAEW and multi-mission systems on various platforms, adapted to customer requirements.

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