The first Polish Gulfstream G550 jet, destined to be used for VIP transport purposes, has landed at the 1st Airlift Base in Warsaw. The ceremony, during in which the jet was welcomed and transferred for duty, after formally having been handed-off to the Poles on Monday, involved, among other officials, Head of the Polish Ministry of Defence, Antoni Macierewicz and Secretary of State at the Polish Ministry of Defence, Bartosz Kownacki.
The event agenda included the jet taxing and landing, a water salute, stop at the Z-4 taxiway, in front of the Terminal, naming (sponsoring) ceremony, press briefing and a tour onboard. As it was stressed by Macierewicz, during his meeting with the press, the jet will guarantee “security”, so that state is not “theoretical”. He also noted that avionics of the G550 platform “meet all of the international standards within the scope of flight safety”.
The jet has been received its name of “Książe Józef Poniatowski”, with Halina Łabonarska acting as the sponsor. Introduction of the G550 jets into service at the 1st Airlift Base in Warsaw is planned to happen in the autumn of 2017. The operational capability status ascribed to those jets would mean that the Polish Air Force would recover its ability to transport the Polish VIPs, with the use of special purpose aircraft. The said capacity has been lost, after Tu-154M and Yak-40 jets have been withdrawn.
The second G550 is expected to be received by the Polish Air Force in mid-July, as the MoD informs. The jet is going to have a 0002 number assigned, and bear the name of “General Kazimierz Pułaski”.
G550 has been sold since the year 2004, up until now, around 500 examples have been procured globally. As it has been emphasized by the MoD, the tendering procedure which led to selection of G550 placed a priority emphasis on the issue of safety, which has been exemplified, e.g. in the requirement to have the jet fitted with a modern EVS (Enhanced Visual System) solution, acting as a flying aid that could be used in tough weather conditions.
G550 aircraft are being used for VIP transport purposes by numerous countries, including: Azerbaijan, Kuwait, Morocco, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, Sweden, Tanzania, Turkey, Uganda and the United States.