Falcon 2000S

By By Fred George fred.george@aviationweek.com
Source: Business & Commercial Aviation

After completing the post-start checklists, it took little more than idle thrust to start rolling out of the chocks. Braking action was very smooth. Nosewheel steering is controlled exclusively by the tiller. It's easy to make small heading changes. But if you need more steering authority, it comes on in a hurry as you turn the tiller past about 45 deg.

The tower directed us to line up and wait on Runway 8R as a Singapore Airlines Airbus A330 departed. I called for the standard-takeoff Falcon “FATS” line-up check — Nese responded with “Flaps SF2, airbrakes retracted, trim three set and speeds bugs set.”

Once cleared for takeoff, we advanced the thrust levers to about 50% holding the brakes, checked the gauges and then pushed them fully forward while releasing the brakes. At the aircraft's relatively light weight, it accelerated as though it were a light jet. Control forces at rotation also suggested the Falcon 2000S was a light jet, in spite of its 17-ton weight.

Ground roll was about 1,500 ft. We climbed on the 083 runway heading to 1,000 ft. then headed 098 deg. in compliance with the Fraser departure. Vancouver Departure quickly cleared us to climb directly to 16,000 ft., our final requested altitude, and vectored us to intercept V317 to the northwest over the Strait of Georgia. Nese said that normal climb is 300 KIAS/Mach 0.80. We used a 260 KIAS climb to conserve fuel.

After level off at 16,000 ft., we used the auto-throttle to maintain 300 KIAS, flying through several cloud layers until we neared Comox radio beacon on Vancouver Island. In ISA+3C conditions and at a weight of 33,500 lb., the aircraft cruised at 379 KTAS on 2,650 lb./hr. In contrast, had we been up at FL 450, the aircraft would have cruised at 456 KTAS on 800 pph total fuel flow, assuming the same weight and ISA deviation.

Once in clear air, we flew a couple of 360-deg. steep turns. Pitch control force was comparatively light for a large-cabin aircraft. The HUD's flight path marker and thrust director took all the work out of maintaining a 45-deg. bank angle and 300 KIAS.

Next, we slowed the aircraft at idle in the clean configuration with the autopilot engaged to sample the Falcon's automatic auto-throttle engagement for automatic speed protection. The stall warning system generated a sideways magenta teardrop at 135 kt., or 5 kt. above the yellow low-speed cue tape as we maintained 1g flight in the 33,000-lb. aircraft. Had we increased vertical acceleration, the speed warning tape and bug would have increased due to the higher AOA.

Once the aircraft reached 135 KIAS, the auto-throttles automatically engaged and advanced the thrust levers to prevent the aircraft from flying slower, and the aircraft flew itself out of the high AOA state.

We then disengaged both the autopilot and the auto-throttles, again slowing the aircraft at idle. Nese then selected SF2 and the stall warning teardrop dropped to 111 KIAS, again 5 kt. above the yellow low-speed warning tape. Aircraft weight was 32,700 lb. We allowed the aircraft to decelerate to less than 106 KIAS, 5+ kt. below the 111 KIAS teardrop, and then flew a series of shallow turns in the yellow band, occasionally allowing the aircraft to slow to the red tape signifying approach to stall. The aircraft remained completely docile.

Comments On Articles