After recently concluding all high-speed certification flights, the FAA has validated the Mach 0.935 maximum operating speed for Cessna’s new Citation X. By a margin of about six knots, the Cessna jet has thus reclaimed its title as fastest civilian aircraft in the world from the Mach 0.925 Gulfstream G650, which toppled the original Mach 0.92 Citation X last year.
“The high-speed testing of the new Citation X was a success,” said Cessna senior vice president of engineering Michael Thacker. “All responses from the high-speed certification testing were well within the expected performance envelope. While these are the results our engineers fully anticipated, this final round of testing went so smoothly the conditions were completed in fewer flights and hours than planned.”
The high-speed testing regimen included handling qualities, stability, control and maneuverability. The Citation X high-speed validation was accomplished as a result of collaboration with FAA pilots and Cessna’s engineering flight-test team during the past few weeks. To date, the Citation X flight-test program has logged more than 1,300 hours in preparation for certification, which Cessna expects early next year.