Boeing has announced plans for a hypersonic passenger aircraft which could take people from London to New York in just two hours.
The jet was unveiled by the US aviation firm and would have a ‘potential top speed of more than 3,800mph’, which is close to five times the speed of sound.
It would break the current record which stands at two hours and 52 minutes.
As it stands, an average flight between the UK capital and New York takes around six hours and 45 minutes.
Kevin Bowcutt, Boeing’s chief scientist of hypersonics told Aviation Week:
When you look at the problem of getting from point A to point B anywhere in the world, the question is how fast do you want to go and how fast is fast enough?
Supersonic isn’t really fast enough to go overseas and back in one day. For the business traveller or the military, where time is really important, that’s an interesting point.
Mach 5 is where you can do that. You can get across the Atlantic in about two hours and across the Pacific in about three hours.
Unfortunately, there’ll be quite a bit of a wait before we see such a flight.
Boeing is hoping to see the aircraft in service by the ‘late 2030s at the earliest’ – and they have estimated the project could take up to ten years longer than predicted.
Mr Bowcutt added:
You have to do these kinds of studies now to know where we have to push the technology and where we have to advance things.
Technologically we could have an [operational military] hypersonic aircraft, such as an ISR, flying in 10 years.
But there’s a lot that goes into a commercial aeroplane, including the market, regulatory and environmental requirements, so it will happen when there is a convergence of those things.
The exciting plans would overtake the two hours and 52 minutes record which is currently held by Concorde.
Concorde was a British-French turbojet-powered supersonic passenger airliner which operated from 1976 until 2003.
It had a maximum speed over twice the speed of sound at Mach 2.04 (1,354 mph or 2,180 km/h at cruise altitude), with seating for 92 to 128 passengers.
Air France made its final commercial Concorde landing in the United States in New York City from Paris on 30 May 2003.
British Airways retired its Concorde fleet on October 24, 2003.
Last year, a firm in America promised to bring back supersonic air-flight with fares ‘about the same price as today’s business class tickets’.
Denver-based Boom says London to New York flights will set you back £2,000 one-way and take 3 hours 15 minutes, decreasing the current time, writes the Independent.
Their plane would be, for measure, 100mph faster than Concorde. Boom is building an aircraft called XB-1 which they said is ‘under construction’.
They ensured American business-types could:
Leave New York at 6am, make afternoon and dinner meetings in London, and be home to tuck your kids into bed.
Routes over 4,500 miles include a brief tech stop, included in listed flight times. Passengers do not need to deplane or exit their seats.
The breakthrough Boom airliner allows you to offer Mach 2.2 flights profitably at the same fares as subsonic business class.
A major problem with Concorde is that it had more seats than could be filled at the required prices. The Boom aircraft has 55 seats, similar to the premium cabin in a typical widebody aircraft.
It’d be very good to see this happen.
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