STATUS: Active, Limited Service
MANUFACTURER(S): Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation - USA
OPERATORS: Sweden; United States
LENGTH: 79.92 feet (24.36 meters)
WIDTH: 68.83 feet (20.98 meters)
HEIGHT: 24.51 feet (7.47 meters)
WEIGHT (EMPTY): 36,905 pounds (16,740 kilograms)
WEIGHT (MTOW): 65,499 pounds (29,710 kilograms)
ENGINE: 2 x Rolls-Royce Spey 511-8 turbofan engines developing 11,400lb of thrust each.
SPEED (MAX): 582 miles-per-hour (936 kilometers-per-hour; 505 knots)
RANGE: 4,275 miles (6,880 kilometers; 3,715 nautical miles)
CEILING: 45,000 feet (13,716 meters; 8.52 miles)
RATE-OF-CLIMB: 4,350 feet-per-minute (1,326 meters-per-minute)
Detailing the development and operational history of the Gulfstream C-20 Government / Military VIP Passenger Transport.
Entry last updated on 7/12/2018.
Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com.
The Gulfstream III and Gulfstream IV commercial corporate jets have served as the framework for the "C-20" family of U.S. military government-level VIP passenger transports. The Gulfstream III covers the C-20A, C-20B, C-20C and C-20D models while the Gulfstream IV is the C-20F (U.S. Army), C-20G (USMC), C-20H (USAF) and C-20J (U.S. Army). The Gulfstream III was introduced by Gulfstream Aerospace in 1980 and 202 were built while the Gulfstream IV achieved better commercial success, entering service in the mid-1980s and has seen production reach 870 units. Both variations are twin-engine jets of conventional form and function.
The original C-20A and C-20B production models were selected to succeed the outgoing line C-140B JetStar aircraft then in service with the USAF. The C-20A held provision for 14 passengers and carried a crew of five. The C-20B (2 x Rolls-Royce Spey 511-8 engines) arrived in 1992 with updated avionics and electronics while the C-20C introduced protected communications for its passengers. The C-20D was taken on by the United States Navy (USN) as an Operational Support Airlift (OSA) type and given appropriate mission equipment for the role of transporting high-ranking USN officials. The C-20E arrived as a "stretched fuselage" model and given slightly reworked wing mainplanes, serving the United States Army.
The SRA-1 became a specialized variant intended for reconnaissance and surveillance for the export market. Similarly, the SMA-3 became a radar-equipped version for maritime patrol, Search & Rescue and VIP transport for Denmark.
For the USAF, three C-20A examples were delivered to the 89th Airlift Wing and these were then shipped to Ramstein AFB in Germany. The C-20B arrived powered by 2 x Rolls-Royce Spey Mark 511-8 series engines.
The C-20H was another stretched fuselage version (powered by 2 x Rolls-Royce Tay 611-8 engines) and this arrived in 1992 as a more advanced model with modernized avionics, uprated engines and new electrical system offering improved range, performance and noise reduction.
The C-20A was given up in frontline service by the USAF in 2002. To fill the gap at Ramstein, a pair of C-20H models were shipped to Germany in their place.
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Our Data Modules allow for quick visual reference when comparing a single entry against contemporary designs. Areas covered include general ratings, speed assessments, and relative ranges based on distances between major cities.
Relative Maximum Speed Rating
This entry's maximum listed speed (582mph).
Graph average of 562.5 miles-per-hour.
Graph showcases the Gulfstream C-20A's operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Useful in showcasing the era cross-over of particular aircraft/aerospace designs.
Unit Production Comparison
Comm. Market HI*: 44,000 units
Military Market HI**: 36,183 units