Falcon 50
French Air Force Falcon 50
Role Business jet
Manufacturer Dassault Aviation
First flight 7 November 1976
Status In service
Primary users Armee de l'Air
South African Air Force
Portuguese Air Force
Italian Air Force
Produced 1976–2008[1]
Number built 352
Developed from Dassault Falcon 20
Developed into Dassault Falcon 900

The Dassault Falcon 50 is a French super-midsize, long-range business jet, featuring a trijet layout with an S-duct air intake for the central engine. It has the same fuselage cross-section and similar capacity as the earlier twin-engined Falcon 20, but was a new design that is area ruled and includes a more advanced wing design.[2]

Design and development

The first prototype flew on 7 November 1976, with French airworthiness certification on 27 February 1979, followed by U.S. Federal Aviation Administration certification on 7 March 1979.[2] Dassault developed a maritime surveillance and environmental protection version as the Gardian 50.[3]

The Falcon 50 was later updated as the Falcon 50EX, the first of which flew in 1996,[4] and the last of which was delivered in 2008.[1] The Falcon 50EX features improved engines and other enhancements to give further range improvements to an already long-range jet. The Falcon 50EX designation applies to serial numbers 253–352, which marks the end of the production line for the Falcon 50/50EX.

Successors to the Falcon 50 are the Falcon 7X[5] and the Falcon 900 featuring a larger fuselage and the same three-engine arrangement. Dassault announced in January 2008 what is essentially a replacement aircraft for the Falcon 50, codenamed the "SMS" (Super Mid Size). The basic design process, including engine selection, was supposed to be completed by early 2009. However, in a June 2009 press conference, CEO Charles Edelstenne said that all design choices had been reopened and the goal was extended to the end of the year.

Dassault and Aviation Partners Inc. have developed and certified High Mach blended winglets for the Falcon 50 & 50EX as a retrofit kit.

By 2018, Falcon 50s from the mid-late 1980s were priced at $0.879 to $1.6 million while 1998-2003 Falcon 50EXs can be had for $2.95 to $3.95 million.[6]


Falcon 50
Basic initial variant with Honeywell TFE 731-3-1C engines and optional auxiliary power unit (APU); 252 manufactured, with one serving as a prototype for the Falcon 50EX.[7][8]
Falcon 50EX
Falcon 50EX
Marketing name for Falcon 50 with 3 DEEC (Digital Electronic Engine Control) controlled TFE 731-40 engines; an APU installed as standard equipment; changes to the rudder control system; updated avionics; and other improvements; 100 manufactured, plus one modified Falcon 50[7][8]
Falcon 50 "Susanna"
Single Falcon 50 for Iraq modified with a Cyrano IV-C5 radar and hardpoints to carry two AM-39 Exocet antiship missiles. Used for training Mirage F1 crews and possibly carried out the attack on the USS Stark on May 17, 1987. This aircraft was flown to Iran during the Persian Gulf War and was not returned.[9][10][11][12]


Falcon 50EX of the Bolivian Air Force for vice-presidential use
Falcon 50 of the Iranian government landing at Mehrabad International Airport in Tehran

The majority of Falcon 50s are operated by corporate and individual owners.

Military and government operators

South Africa

Accidents and incidents

Specifications (50EX)

side view
Dassault Falcon 50 cabin interior

Data from Flight International[15]

General characteristics


See also

Related development

Aircraft of comparable role, configuration, and era

Related lists


  1. ^ a b "News Channel - Homepage - flightglobal.com". Flightglobal.com. Archived from the original on 28 August 2008. Retrieved 26 April 2018.
  2. ^ a b Taylor 1988, p.75.
  3. ^ Taylor 1993, p.928
  4. ^ "News Channel - Homepage - flightglobal.com". Flightglobal.com. Archived from the original on 6 June 2009. Retrieved 26 April 2018.
  5. ^ "News Channel - Homepage - flightglobal.com". Flightglobal.com. Archived from the original on 6 June 2009. Retrieved 26 April 2018.
  6. ^ Mark Huber (December 2018). "For many models, market hitting the apex" (PDF). Aviation International News. pp. 20–21, 24. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2018-12-27. Retrieved 2018-12-27.
  7. ^ a b Type Certificate Data Sheet A46EU, p. 4
  8. ^ a b Type Certificate Data Sheet A46EU, p. 16
  9. ^ Garcia, Miguel (2018). Iraqi Mirages in Combat: The story of the F.1EQ in Iraq. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform. pp. 118–124. ISBN 978-1717467553.
  10. ^ Leone, Dario (14 July 2019). "How a Modified Iraqi Falcon 50 Business Jet Nearly Destroyed a US Frigate". The National Interest. Retrieved 1 December 2020.
  11. ^ de Guillebon, Hugues (February 2020). "L'attaque de la frégate Stark par un "Falcon" 50 irakien le 17 mai 1987". Le Fana de l'Aviation (603): 16–28.
  12. ^ Cooper, Tom. "In 1987, a Secret Iraqi Warplane Struck an American Frigate and Killed 37 Sailors". War is Boring. Retrieved 1 December 2020.
  13. ^ "The USS Stark Incident: That time a Modified Iraqi Falcon 50 Business Jet almost Sank a US Navy Frigate". 2019-07-10.
  14. ^ "Official website Aeronautica Militare". difesa.it. Archived from the original on 15 December 2014. Retrieved 26 April 2018.
  15. ^ "Super Mid-Size Jets". Flight International.
  16. ^ Taylor 1988, pp.75–76.