G650 Breaks Around-the-World Speed Record But Will Its Reign Be Short-Lived?

By: | December 13th, 2013

The Gulfstream G650 was declared the fastest certified civilian aircraft by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) after it reached an average speed of 568.5 miles (914.9 km) per hour. Built by Savannah-based Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation, Gulfstream G650 has successfully circled the globe in 41 hours and 7 minutes. That’s the fastest time for a westbound; around the world flight for any non-supersonic aircraft, thanks mainly to the Mach 0.925 top speed of G650.

Showing off both speed and range, the G650 covered 20,310 nautical miles. It started and ended its around-the-world flight in San Diego with stops in Guam, Dubai and Cape Verde.

The G650, with a price tag of $65 million US, offers the longest range, fastest speed, largest cabin and the most advanced cockpit in the Gulfstream fleet with a range of 7,000 nautical miles. This ultra-long range civilian aircraft has amassed a total of 38 records till now.

But all theses feats by Gulfstream G650 could be short lived; Cessna is looking to steal a few world records from G650. On its way to certification, which is expected in early 2041, Cessna’s Citation X recently cleared all the high-speed test flights with the FAA, which confirmed that Cessna could be the fastest civilian aircraft in the world.

It also boasts a maximum operating speed of Mach 0.935, compared to Gulfstream G650’s Mach 0.925 top speed. However, the G650 has a significantly greater range of 7,000 nautical miles to the Citation X’s 3,242 nautical miles.

Nidhi Goyal

Nidhi is a gold medalist Post Graduate in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences.

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