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  Takeoff

Gulfstream G450 Flight Procedures

The act of turning the G450 from a ground vehicle into a sleek aerospace machine is pretty simple, so simple that you can completely ignore published procedure and make it look good with very little muss or fuss. The beauty of doing it by the book, on the other hand, is you make it consistent and if something goes wrong, you will have a standard to measure the deviation.


 

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Figure: Normal Takeoff, from G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §06-02-00, Figure 1.

Prior to the Runway

FMS Set Up

[G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §03-04-20 ¶7] Slip Indicators / Compasses / Flight Instruments . . . CHECKED

Ensure you have a vertical and horizontal mode selected in the flight director and the heading bug set on the runway heading. (The bug provides a back up indication of yaw in the event of engine failure, it will deflect in the direction of the operating engine.)

Takeoff Briefing

[G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §03-04-20 ¶11] The takeoff briefing should include, as a minimum, the normal call outs during the acceleration phase to V1 and VR, runway and departure SID, ATC clearance, takeoff configuration, climb performance, and Go/No-Go criteria should also be addressed, including specific duties during aborted takeoff. The PF will perform the crew briefing prior to takeoff. If the PIC is not making the takeoff, he will amend the briefing as necessary to ensure that it is clear as to when and under what circumstances he will take control of the airplane. Consider the following items:

  • Type of takeoff - Flex EPR or Rated Thrust, Autothrottle or Manual, Noise Abatement, Wet or Dry, etc.
  • Normal Procedures, to include: Initial Headings and Altitudes to be flown and Obstacle Restrictions / Minimum Safe Altitude.
  • Procedures and intentions in the event of an emergency prior to and after V1.
  • MCDU and FMS selections, anti-icing requirements and specific PNF duties.
  • A request for “Any questions” or “Comments” is directed to all cockpit crewmembers.

[G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §06-02-30 ¶1] Gulfstream recommends that at a minimum, the following points be discussed by the flight crew before departure: RUNWAY & DEPARTURE SID / ATC CLEARANCE / TAKEOFF CONFIGURATION/CLIMB PERFORMANCE / GO/NO-GO DECISION CRITERIA

  • Runway and departure SID - Discuss and agree on runway/departure SID to be used.
  • ATC Clearance - Discuss and agree on ATC clearance
  • Takeoff/Climb Performance - Discuss runway length required versus available runway, any SID climb requirements and terrain.

Here's mine: "This will be a left seat [rated / flex] takeoff on a [dry / wet / contaminated] runway [with cowl / wing anti-ice on]. My hand will be on the tiller, your hand will be on the yoke until 80 knots. If we have any malfunctions prior to that, call out abort and I will. If we have a reduction of thrust, directional control, fire on board the aircraft, or any malfunction that keeps us from flying prior to a V1 speed of _____ knots, call out abort and I will. We can return immediately to [an ILS / a visual] approach here or nearby alternates of _____. If we don't need to return, or climb out instructions are ____. Do you have any questions or comments?"

V-Speeds Boxed

Once cleared for takeoff the V-Speeds will box if the airplane is in proper configuration for the planned takeoff. The following items are included in the FMS Takeoff Performance Configuration Check:

[G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §2B-26-50.3 (page 33)] Takeoff initialization is required in order to calculate takeoff data and have V-speeds posted on the PFD. There are five pages of initialization. The FMS continuously performs a takeoff configuration check. This check compares the initialization inputs/selection against actual aircraft or environmental conditions. The following items are included in the configuration check:

  • Pressure altitude (within 100 feet of sensed)
  • Baro setting (within 0.10 inches of Mercury)
  • Anti-skid
  • Spoilers
  • Flaps
  • Anti-ice
  • Takeoff weight (within limits)

“FAT-BAG” is my mnemonic...

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Aircraft Lighting

[AC 120-74B Taxi Operations ¶7.h.]

(b) Taxiing. Prior to commencing taxi, turn on navigation, position, anti-collision, and logo lights, if available. To signal intent to other pilots, turn on the taxi light when the aircraft is moving or intending to move on the ground, and turn it off when stopped or yielding or as a consideration to other pilots or ground personnel. Strobe lights should not be illuminated during taxi if they will adversely affect the vision of other pilots or ground personnel.

(c) Crossing a Runway. All exterior lights should be illuminated when crossing a runway. CAUTION: Flight crews should consider any adverse effects to safety that illuminating the forward-facing lights will have on the vision of other pilots or ground personnel during runway crossings.

(d) Entering the Departure Runway for Takeoff or LUAW. When entering a runway, either for takeoff or when taxiing into LUAW, flight crews should make their aircraft more conspicuous to aircraft on final behind them and to ATC by turning on all lights, except for landing lights, that highlight the aircraft’s silhouette. Strobe lights should not be illuminated if they will adversely affect the vision of other pilots. At night, and cleared to LUAW, consider lining up slightly to the left or right of the centerline (CL) (approximately 3 feet) to enable a landing aircraft to visually differentiate that your aircraft from the runway lights.

(e) Takeoff. Turn on all lights, including landing lights, when takeoff clearance is received, or when commencing takeoff roll at an airport without an operating control tower.

Taking the Runway / Starting the Takeoff Roll

Alignment

[G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §03-04-30] TILLER STEERING SHOULD BE USED TO ALIGN THE AIRPLANE ON CENTERLINE. ONCE TAKEOFF ROLL HAS COMMENCED, USE OF TILLER STEERING ABOVE 60 KCAS IS NOT RECOMMENDED.

AFM Standing Takeoff Procedure

[G450 Airplane Flight Manual §5.2] Field length limited takeoff performance presented in this Airplane Flight Manual is based on a non-rolling takeoff. The following takeoff procedure was assumed for the determination of takeoff performance provided and should be used in actual takeoffs:

  1. Line up on runway
  2. Brakes on, ground spoilers armed, and flaps at 10° or 20°
  3. Advance power to takeoff setting
  4. When takeoff thrust has been established, release brakes

Performance

[G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §12-01-10 1.] Field length limited takeoff performance presented in this Airplane Flight Manual is based on a non-rolling takeoff. The following takeoff procedure was assumed for the determination of takeoff performance provided and should be used in actual takeoffs:

  • Line up on runway
  • Brakes on, ground spoilers armed, and flaps at 10° or 20°
  • Advance power to takeoff setting
  • When takeoff thrust has been established, release brakes.

[G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §12-01-10 1.] The performance also assumes that the airplane is accelerated with all engines operating to the V1 speed, at which time engine failure has been recognized (or the decision has been made to abort a twin engine takeoff) and pilot action is taken. At this point the airplane can be either:

  • Accelerated to the scheduled VR speed at which time rotation is initiated and the acceleration continued to attain V2 speed by the 35 foot height (with gear retraction initiated after positive climb is indicated), or
  • Stop on the remaining runway by immediately applying full wheel braking and moving both power levers to idle for dry runway operations or to reverse thrust for wet runway operations. The power lever movement actuates the ground spoilers. No reverse thrust credit was taken for accelerate-stop distances computed for dry runways; however, the use of reverse thrust is recommended to reduce the braking distance and the kinetic energy absorbed by the brakes. Wet runway accelerate-stop distances are calculated assuming the deployment of one or both thrust reversers.

More about that: G450 Performance (Takeoff).

That's all the book says about the takeoff procedure now. Jump back a year or so and there was more:

(1) Engage the autothrottle for takeoff as follows:

(a) On the side of either power lever knob, depress the Takeoff / Go Around (TOGA) button.

(b) On the Flight Guidance Panel, select runway heading in the HEADING window, then depress the Heading Select (HDG SEL) button.

(c) Depress and hold the brakes. While holding the brakes, advance the power levers until both Engine Pressure Ratio (EPR) indications are above 1.05.

(d) On either power lever, depress the Autothrottle Engage (A/T ENG/DISENG) switch, and release the brakes. Power will automatically advance to Takeoff EPR.

(2) Maintain directional control with rudder pedal steering while keeping one hand on the Nosewheel Steering hand wheel for use if required.

AFM Procedure versus a Rolling Takeoff

The G450 Aircraft Operating Manual used to allow setting 1.05 EPR prior to brake release but now the only thing in the AFM or AOM calls for setting takeoff power prior to brake release. So where does that leave us? If you want to make the AFM performance numbers work, you need to square your turns and get the airplane stopped with only 100' behind it and all the runway except that 100' in front. You need to stand on the brakes, set takeoff power, then release the brakes. If you have room to spare, press on as normal. What is room to spare?

The GIII had three procedures you might want to consider:

  • "Standing Takeoff" — Set takeoff power, release brakes: results in AFM performance
  • "Modified Standing Takeoff" — Set partial power, release brakes: adds 500' to distance
  • "Rolling Takeoff — Don't stop, just set power and go: adds 1,000' to distance

Hand on the Tiller After Brake Release or Not?

The book used to say yes, now it just doesn't say. My take:

  • You do not have full aerodynamic control of the airplane until VMCG Minimum Control Speed, Ground and in the G450 maybe a bit more than that. Once you get to that speed, losing an engine should not push you more than 30 feet from runway centerline. Below that speed? Without nosewheel steering, all bets are off.
  • Keeping the left hand on the tiller till 80 knots and the right hand on the power levers till V1 solidifies abort criteria: with both hands off the yoke, abort for just about anything; with one hand on the yoke, abort only for the major items.

RAAS

The Runway Awareness Advisory System (RAAS) will announce the runway as you approach it and as you line the airplane with the runway. A good technique is to announce cross-cockpit that you heard the tower's directed runway and RAAS, you see the runway number, and that the airplane is aligned with that runway.

For example: "I heard two nine, I see two nine, we are heading two nine three."

Takeoff Roll

Airspeed Alive

[G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §06-02-40 ¶1] At airspeed alive, Pilot Monitoring (PM): "Airspeed Alive," "Power Set" (Ensure power is set by 60 knots. If actual EPR/N1 doesn't match target, increase power).

This is your first opportunity to ensure the pitot/static system is working.

Elevator Free

[G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §06-02-40 ¶1] Pilot Flying (PF): Verify elevator free.

The book now says the PF ensures the elevator is free. This duty used to belong to other guy, who the book now calls the Pilot Monitoring (PM) but just a few revisions was the Pilot Not Flying (PNF):

At 60 KCAS, when "HOLD" is annunciated on the Primary Flight Display (PFD), the Pilot Not Flying (PNF) checks EPR and calls, "Power Set," if EPR is on target or "EPR Low, Increase Power" if power is below target. The PF will disengage the autothrottle and manually set Takeoff EPR. PNF also calls “Elevator Free” after verifying that the elevator moves aft freely. The PF transitions from the tiller to the yoke at this time.

I recommend keeping the old procedure since the PF's attention should be with aligning the aircraft with the runway and setting power. Most Gulfstream pilots neglect the "elevator free" step but really should give the elevator a tug to be sure it is free. Why? It is your last chance to make sure the control lock isn't engaged.

Crosswinds

[G450 Airplane Flight Manual §5.1, Pg. 5.1-6] The maximum demonstrated 90° crosswind component for takeoff and landing is 24 knots which was demonstrated with tiller steering operative and rudder pedal steering off.

But wait, you say to yourself, the demonstrated crosswind in a GV with 17' more wing is higher! How can that be? Where does the requirement for a "demonstrated" crosswind come from?

See: G450 Crosswinds.

The book no longer says this but I suppose it is just basic airmanship: If there is a crosswind, the PM holds the ailerons into the wind with a slight forward pressure on the yoke.

80 Knots

[G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §06-02-40 ¶1] At 80 Knots, Pilot Monitoring: "80 Knots."

V1

[G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §06-02-40 ¶1] At V1:

  • Pilot Monitoring: "V1."

Rotate

[G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §06-02-40 ¶1] At VR:

  • Pilot Flying: Rotate to an initial pitch of 14 degrees.
  • Pilot Monitoring: "Rotate."

[G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §12-01-10 1.] The takeoff performance is predicated on employing the following techniques during rotation and climb out following an engine failure. After reaching the target rotation speed, a rapid and aggressive column pull shall be applied. Adjust pitch following liftoff to achieve V2 at the 35 foot height. For an engine failure after reaching V2, it is recommended that the speed at the time of the engine failure (up to V2 + 10 knots) be maintained. Pitch attitudes during a normal takeoff (all engines operating) should be limited to a maximum of 20 degrees.

After 30 plus years this procedure came as a bit of a shock to me. No other airplane in my experience, including the GIII, GIV, and GV, advocated such an aggressive rotation. No doubt those procedures have probably been updated to match the G450 and G550. Even the G650 loss involving aggressive rotations was not enough to force a return to a more genteel method. I suppose it was the only way to meet climb performance numbers and perhaps with such overpowered airplanes maybe it isn't a problem. I've seen the Boeing 707 wing stall on takeoff rotation because of this "snatch" method and a Challenger 604 was lost because of it. You do as you think best, but I continue to think this procedure is just wrong and I use the Boeing method of rotating 3 - 4 degrees per second.

See: Challenger 604 C-FTBZ.

After Lift Off

Verify positive rate of climb on the baro altimeter and VSI.

[G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §06-02-40 ¶1]

  • Pilot Monitoring: "Positive Rate."
  • Pilot Flying: "Gear Up."
  • Pilot Monitoring: Position gear lever up, select ground spoilers off.

This is how most Gulfstream pilots have done this for years: gear up, spoilers off. We have been correctly paranoid about leaving those ground spoilers armed in case we have a weight on wheels failure followed by the need to pull the throttles to idle. But if that were to happen your first indication would be when the gear handle refused to move to the up position. Would you have the presence of mind to turn the ground spoilers off or would your sequential mind jump immediately to the trouble shoot mode? And while you are doing that, wouldn't the pilot flying be consumed with levelling off and perhaps allowing the throttles to retard? Our solution: after the "positive rate, gear up" call, the PM should turn the spoilers off FIRST and then retract the gear.

More about this: G450 Landing Gear Failure to Retract.

[G450 Airplane Flight Manual §3-18-50] Landing gear should remain extended until all brake temperatures are below 200° C. Verify Brake Overheat message is extinguished.

You should get a "Brake Overheat" CAS if brakes exceed this temperature but the brake temperatures continue to rise for about 30 minutes after use. If your brakes were warm prior to takeoff, it would be wise to check the temperatures prior to retraction.

At 400 ft Above Airport Level (AAL)

[G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §06-02-40 ¶1]

  • Pilot Flying: "Flaps Up," direct PM to select lateral/vertical mode as required.
  • Pilot Monitoring: Select and verify flaps up, and select lateral/vertical mode as requested.

[G450 Airplane Flight Manual §2-05-10 ¶2.] Limit bank angle to 15 degrees while retracting flaps until reaching V2+20.

An all-engine flap retract speed is not given in the books but can be inferred from the engine-out procedure:

[G450 Airplane Flight Manual §4-06-30] [G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §05-06-30] Flaps . . . UP after V2 + 10 attained at 1500 ft above airport level.

Takeoff Call Outs Summary

[G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §06-02-40 ¶1]

  • PM: "Airspeed Alive"
  • PM: "Power Set, Elevator Free"
  • PM: "80 Knots"
  • PM: "V1"
  • PM: "Rotate"
  • PF: "Gear Up"
  • PF: "Flaps Up"

HUD

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Figure: HUD Speed cues, from Eddie's Notes.

[G450 Aircraft Operating Manual §2B-18-20 ¶2.A.]

The HUD offers V-speeds on the speed dial as well as on the speed error tape which starts long and below the aircraft symbol and decreases as the speed markers are passed:

Runway Heading

[Aeronautical Information Manual, Pilot Controller Glossary] RUNWAY HEADING− The magnetic direction that corresponds with the runway centerline extended, not the painted runway number. When cleared to "fly or maintain runway heading," pilots are expected to fly or maintain the heading that corresponds with the extended centerline of the departure runway. Drift correction shall not be applied; e.g., Runway 4, actual magnetic heading of the runway centerline 044, fly 044.

[Honeywell SIL D2012000071R000]

  • For standard instrument departure (SID) or other database departure procedures that begin with "Fly Heading ABC", the Honeywell business and general aviation (BGA) FMS flies the indicated heading as a track, rather than holding the assigned heading. For example, if the SID reads "Fly Runway Heading to .", the FMS will fly the runway track straight out (no drifting left or right due to crosswind) and the actual heading flown may not match the procedure heading, depending on the actual wind. This will cause the aircraft to fly a different ground track than aircraft that are either flying the procedure manually or are equipped with an FMS that flies the actual heading. These effects become greater with stronger crosswinds and when the distance the heading is flown is longer.
  • It is recommended that pilots should be vigilant for aircraft conducting RNAV departures on nearby parallel runways that are properly flying a heading while your aircraft is tracking a course. Operations during high crosswind conditions on extended track legs may inappropriately reduce aircraft separation, and pilots should manually intervene and fly heading to avoid any potential traffic conflicts.

If the departure procedure reads "fly runway heading" you need to do that with the heading bug, not the FMS.

Example

Here's how we do it at Incognito Air: G450 Takeoff.

References

Advisory Circular 120-74B, Parts 91, 121, 125, and 135 Flight Crew Procedures During Taxi Operations, 7/30/12, U.S. Department of Transportation

Aeronautical Information Manual

Gulfstream G450 Aircraft Operating Manual, Revision 35, April 30, 2013.

Gulfstream G450 Airplane Flight Manual, Revision 35, April 18, 2013

Honeywell Service Information Letter D2012000071R000, Heading Versus Track, 22 Mar 2013.

Revision: 20140323
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