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Falcon 50

Hervé Leprince-Ringuet and Gérard Joyeuse took the Falcon 50's maiden flight. It was powered by three Garrett TFE 731-3 jet engines, and flew out of Bordeaux-Mérignac on November 7, 1976.

Origins and context

Demand in the United States for longer flight ranges prompted design work on a new aircraft in 1974. This new model, the Falcon 50, was to break away from the Falcon 30-40 range. It needed to fly 3 400 NM (6 300 km) on FAR 121 reserves. That equates with crossing the North Atlantic or the United States non-stop. It became the Falcon family’s first transoceanic aircraft. Before it, no other business aircraft could fly across the Atlantic ocean in keeping with the regulations inherent to transport public.

Falcon 50 in flight
Falcon 50 in flight

Falcon 50

Hervé Leprince-Ringuet and Gérard Joyeuse took the Falcon 50’s maiden flight. It was powered by three Garrett TFE 731-3 jet engines, and flew out of Bordeaux-Mérignac on November 7, 1976.

In December 1976, the company’s authorities decided to revamp the prototype, fitting improved wings. Its first flight with the new wings took place on May 6, 1977, out of Istres, again at the hands of Hervé Leprince-Ringuet and Gérard Joyeuse. The plane proved hopes invested in the wing design to be well-founded. The Falcon 50 became the world’s first civil aircraft featuring supercritical wings, and secured certification on February 27, 1979. The wing choice brought about a formidable technological breakthrough. With only minor adjustments, Dassault was also able to use it on its new Falcon 900 and Falcon 2000 models.

Industrial production began in November 1976 after an agreement was signed between the French government, Aerospatiale and Dassault. Aerospatiale’ plant in Saint-Nazaire was in charge of the fuselage, and built 55% of the frame. Dassault’s plant in Colomiers built the wings, and the assembly and flights took place in Mérignac.

Falcon 50
Falcon 50

The Falcon 50 EX

On April 26, 1995, Serge Dassault announced the launch of the Falcon EX, destined to replace the Falcon 50.

Compared to the Falcon 50, the new aircraft flew higher and faster (it could reach 41,000 feet in 23 minutes), its range increased (6,050 km / 3260 nm at Mach 0.75), its avionics were modernized (Collins Proline 4).

It was equipped with three new engines, the AlliedSignal TFE 731-40 with increased thrust (1,680 kg / 3,704 lb each), improved specific fuel consumption (reduction by 7%) and lower maintenance costs.

The Falcon 50 EX made its first flight at Mérignac on April 10, 1996, piloted by Jean Bongiraud and Etienne Faurdessus.

The first deliveries are planned for the beginning of 1997.

Falcon 50EX in flight
Falcon 50EX in flight

Falcon 50 Datasheet

Dimensions

Span 18,86 m
Length 18,52 m
Height 6,98 m
Cabin Height 1,8 m
Cabin Width 1,86 m
Baggage Volume 2,55 m3

Weight

Unladen weight 9163 kg
Max. Takeoff Weight 17 600 kg
Fuel Capacity 8 763 l (7 040 kg)

Performances

Max. Speed 31 000 ft (9450 m) (km/h) 870
Range 5 830 km

Engine

Type 3 Garrett TFE 731-3 3 X 1 680 kgp

Falcon 50 EX Datasheet

Dimensions

Span 18,86 m
Length 18,52 m
Height 6,98 m
Cabin Height 1,80 m
Cabin Width 1,85 m
Cabin Length 7,16 m

Weight

Max. Takeoff Weight 18.008 kg
Fuel Capacity 7.040 kg

Performances

Range 5695 km

Engine

Type 3 engines AlliedSignal TFE 731-40 (1,680 kg / 3,704 lb each)