Symmetry Flight Deck Feedback


A consistent comment among pilots involved in Gulfstream G500 flight testing is about the aircraft’s agility. The sense of fluidity and power is attributable to the advances in the Symmetry Flight Deck, specifically the revolutionary active control sidesticks and the Intelligence-by-Wire flight system, the next generation of fly-by-wire technology.

Pilots adjust to using a sidestick, which replaces the traditional pedestal controls, in a “matter of seconds,” says Scott Martin, a Gulfstream experimental test pilot.

Intelligence-by-Wire uses wires, relays, circuits and servos rather than mechanical rods, pulleys and cables to manipulate flight controls, and also incorporates the sidesticks, touch-screen avionics controllers and systems such as autopilot, autothrottles and autobrakes.

Gulfstream’s test pilots, who helped develop and refine the Symmetry Flight Deck in the laboratory and in-flight environments, anticipate an enthusiastic response from operators.

“We know there’s going to be a wonderful new customer experience when operators get in the flight deck for the first time and say ‘Wow, this is what I’ve always wanted but could never really describe until I saw it,’” Martin says.