Dassault Falcon 20

Dassault Falcon 20
Falcon 20 (Mystère 20)
HU-25 Guardian
Civilian Falcon 20
Role Business jet
Manufacturer Dassault Aviation
First flight 1963
Introduction 1965
Primary users Federal Express
French Navy
United States Coast Guard
Cobham Aviation
Number built 508
Variants Dassault Falcon 10
Dassault Falcon 50

The Dassault Falcon 20 is a French business jet and was the first of a family of business jets built by Dassault Aviation.


Design and development

Marcel Dassault gave the go-ahead for production of an eight or ten seat executive jet or military liaison aircraft the Dassault-Breguet Mystère 20 in December 1961. The Mystère 20 was a low-wing monoplane with two rear-mounted Pratt & Whitney JT12A-8 engines. The prototype, registered F-WLKB, first flew on the 4 May 1963 at Bordeaux-Merignac. Under the influence of Pan American the aircraft was re-engined with two General Electric CF700 engines and some dimensions were increased. Pan American signed a contract to distribute the Mystère 20 in the western hemisphere and ordered 40 aircraft with options on 120. The re-engined aircraft first flew on 10 July 1964. The first production aircraft flew on 1 January 1965 and both French and American certification was awarded in June 1965. Deliveries began to the Pan American outfitting facility at Burbank Airport, California. In 1966 the company re-designated the American-delivered aircraft as the Fan Jet Falcon, this later became the Falcon 20. Military orders from Australia and Canada were received. All non-American aircraft were fitted out before delivery at Bordeaux-Merignac. In 1967 Pan American Business Jets Division increased their firm orders to 160 aircraft.

Some Falcon 20s powered by General Electric CF700 engines were reengined with Garrett TFE731 engines under AMD-BA Service Bulletin No. 731.[1] These aircraft were redesignated with a "-5" after the model number. Volpar, Inc. worked on a program to reengine Falcon 20s with the Pratt & Whitney Canada 305 engines[2], but the program was abandoned before a FAA STC was awarded.[3]

FAA Supplemental Type Certificate SA5858SW, held by Dassault Falcon Jet allows the installation of underwing pylons on the Fan Jet Falcon, Fan Jet Falcon Series D and Fan Jet Falcon Series E. This modification is commonly used to modify Falcon 20s to operate as special mission aircraft with underwing stores.[4]

The improved Falcon 200 featured more advanced jet engines and other major improvements to increase range, capacity and comfort. The aircraft proved to be so popular that production did not end until 1988, being superseded by more advanced developments of the Falcon family. The United States Coast Guard operates a model called the HU-25 Guardian which is used as a high-speed spotter aircraft to locate shipwreck survivors and direct slower-moving aircraft and rescue vessels, and interdict aerial and shipborne drug trafficking. The Falcon 20G, HU-25 and Falcon 200 were powered by Garrett ATF3 engines.

A total of 473 Falcon 20s and 35 Falcon 200s were built by the time production ended in 1988.[5]

Later developments of the Falcon 20 include the smaller Falcon 10, the larger 30-seat Falcon 30 (not developed) and Falcon 50, an improved three-engined development.


Falcon 20DC freighter of Bancjet Systems at Burbank airport near Los Angeles in September 1986. Note deleted cabin windows
A USCG HU-25 Guardian
Mystère/Falcon 20
Prototype, one built.
Mystère/Falcon 20C
Initial production version. known originally as the Standard Falcon 20 both examples converted to D model.
Falcon 20CC
One aircraft similar to the Falcon 20C, equipped with low-pressure tyres.
Mystère/Falcon 20D
Higher thrust engines (GE CF700-2D) and lower fuel consumption and more fuel capacity.
Mystère/Falcon 20E
Higher thrust engines (GE CF700-2D-2), higher zero fuel weight.
Mystère/Falcon 20F
Full leading edge slats and more fuel capacity.
Falcon 20FH
This was the original designation of the Falcon 200 prototype.
Falcon 20G
Maritime patrol and surveillance version, equipped with two Garrett AiResearch ATF3-6-2C turbofan engines.
Falcon 20H
This was the original designation of the Falcon 200.[6]
Falcon 200
Improved variant, powered by two 2360-kg (5,200-lb) Garrett ATF3-6A-4C turbofan engines and with more fuel. First flown 30 April 1980.[6]
Falcon ST
This designation was given to two Falcon 20s used by the French Air Force as systems training aircraft. The aircraft were equipped with the combat radar and navigation systems of the Mirage IIIE.
HU-25A Guardian
United States Coast Guard version of the Falcon 20G. 41 built. Equipped with two Garrett AiResearch ATF3-6-2C turbofan engines.[7]
HU-25B Guardian
Pollution control version for the US Coast Guard equipped with side-looking airborne radar (SLAR) under fuselage. Seven converted from HU-25As.[8]
HU-25C Guardian
Drug interdiction version for the US Coast Guard, equipped with a Westinghouse APG-66 search radar and WF-360 Forward looking infrared turret. Nine HU-25As converted.[9]
HU-25C+ Guardian
Upgrade of HU-25C, with improved APG-66(V)2 radar and new FLIR turret. All nine HU-25Cs converted.[10]
HU-25D Guardian
Upgraded HU-25A, with AN/APS-143B(V)3 Inverse synthetic aperture radar (ISAR) and same FLIR as HU-25C+. 15 upgraded.[11]
Guardian 2
Maritime patrol and surveillance version of the Falcon 200. Never put into production.
Canadian military designation of Falcon 20C from 1970.
Fan Jet Falcon
The Falcon 20 was marketed in North America under this name.
Falcon Cargo Jet
Conversion of Falcon 20 to light cargo aircraft. Large numbers purchased/converted by Federal Express for overnight courier service.[12]
Falcon 20-C5, -D5, -E5, -F5
Falcon 20 aircraft equipped with Garrett TFE-731-5AR-2C or TFE-731-5BR-2C engines. Also includes adaptation of bleed air, anti-ice, hydraulic, fuel, electrical and engine control systems and installation of ATTCS (automatic takeoff thrust control system).


Dassault Falcon 20
Spanish Air Force Falcon 20D in 1981
A Pakistan Air Force electronic warfare aircraft.
Pakistan Air Force No 24 Blinders Squadron Falcon DA-20 left rear1.jpg

Civilian operators

 United States

Military operators

 Central African Republic
  • Imperial Iranian Air Force
  • Imperial Iranian Navy
  • Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps
 Côte d'Ivoire
 United States

Specifications (Falcon 20F)

Data from Janes's All The World's Aircraft 1980-81 [13]

General characteristics

  • Crew: 2
  • Capacity: 8-14 passengers
  • Length: 17.15 m (56 ft 3 in)
  • Wingspan: 16.30 m (53 ft 6 in)
  • Height: 5.32 m (17 ft 7 in)
  • Wing area: 41.0 m² (440 ft²)
  • Empty weight: 7,530 kg (16,600 lb)
  • Max takeoff weight: 13,000 kg (28,660 lb)
  • Powerplant: 2 × General Electric CF700-2D-2 turbofan, 20 kN (4,500 lbf) each


  • Maximum speed: 862 km/h (465 knots, 536 mph) (max cruise) at 7,620 m (20,000 ft)
  • Cruise speed: 750 km/h (405 knots, 466 mph) (econ cruise) at 12,200m (40,000 ft)
  • Stall speed: 152 km/h (82 knots, 95 mph)
  • Range: 3,350 km (1,808 naut mi, 2,080 mi)
  • Service ceiling: 12,800 m (42,000 ft) (absolute)

See also

Related development
Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era
  • Raytheon Hawker 800

Related lists


  1. ^ FAA Type Certificate Data Sheet A7EU Retrieved 26 June 2011
  2. ^ PW305s Ordered for Falcon 20 Upgrade Retrieved 26 June 2011
  4. ^ 'FAA STC SA5858SW Installation of wing pylons and underwing stores' Retrieved 3 July 2011.
  5. ^ Michell 1994, p. 54.
  6. ^ a b Taylor 1988, pp. 73–74.
  7. ^ Kaminski 2007, p.108.
  8. ^ Kaminski 2007, p. 109.
  9. ^ Kaminski 2007, p. 110.
  10. ^ Kaminski 2007, pp. 110–111.
  11. ^ Kaminski 2007, pp. 111–112.
  12. ^ Taylor 1980, p.65.
  13. ^ Taylor 1980, pp. 63-64.
  • "HU-25 "Guardian" Medium Range Surveillance Aircraft". Aircraft and Cutters. U.S. Coast Guard. 2007-02-16. http://www.uscg.mil/datasheet/hu-25.asp. Retrieved 2007-08-01. 
  • Gates, Brian (1978). Falcon Mystere 20 Production History. Leicester, England: Midland Counties Publications. ISBN 0 904597 12 1. 
  • Kaminski, Tom (2007). "Dassault HU-25: The Coast Guard's Guardian". International Air Power Review (Westport, Connecticut, USA: AIRtime Publishing) (Volume 22): pp. 102–115. ISBN 188058879X. ISSN 1473-9917. 
  • Michell, Simon (1994). Jane's Civil and Military Aircraft Upgrades 1994–95. Coulsdon, UK: Jane's Information Group. ISBN 0 7106 1208 7. 
  • Taylor, John W.R. (1980). Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1980-81. London: Jane's Publishing. ISBN 0 7106-0705-9. 
  • Taylor, John W.R. (1988). Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1988-89. Coulsdon, UK: Jane's Defence Data. ISBN 0 7106-0867-5. 

External links

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