Boom is a step closer to bringing back supersonic travel

The first commercial flights are expected to be in 2023 and test flights will start this year.

By Mary Grady 08/03/2017

A handful of aviation companies are working to bring back supersonic passenger travel — which has been elusive since the Concorde fleet retired — and one of the newer contenders, Boom, recently completed the first round of wind-tunnel testing, a critical step in the development of a prototype.

A scale model, inside a wind tunnel at Wichita State University in Kansas, was used to verify the team's expectations for low-speed aerodynamics, stability, and control. The company's next step is to start assembly of the XB-1 Demonstrator, a technologically representative one-third-scale version of the production Boom airliner, which will ultimately seat up to 45. The first flight of the XB-1 is expected late this year.

Boom's efforts were bolstered in November when Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Group, lent his support to the program. "Through Virgin Galactic's manufacturing arm, the Spaceship Company, we will provide engineering and manufacturing services, along with flight-test support and operations as part of our shared ambitions," Branson said.

Through this relationship, Virgin Galactic has secured an option on Boom's first 10 airframes. Boom's design features a delta wing, a carbon-fibre fuselage, and three efficient turbofan jet engines by General Electric.

It is projected to cruise at Mach 2.2 (about 2335km/h), allowing passengers to fly from New York to London in about three hours and 15 minutes for a fare of about $US2500 (about $A3295) each way. But don't expect to make these hops across the pond anytime soon; the first commercial flights are expected in 2023. (boomsupersonic.com)

ADVERTISE WITH US

Subscribe to the Newsletter

Stay Connected

You may also like.

Blue Origin’s Latest Space Mission Successfully Returns To Earth

The oldest and youngest members of space tourism’s most diverse crew talk about their successful flight over the weekend.

By Michael Verdon

07/06/2022

Aston Martin’s Bond-Worthy Helicopter Is Getting A Second Series

The ACH130 Aston Martin series sold out so quickly that Airbus just announced a new series.

By Michael Verdon

25/05/2022

Airbus’s New Customisation Studio Lets You Configure Your Business Jet With VR

You can even check out a life-size section of the cabin while designing.

By Rachel Cormack

24/05/2022

Bombardier Unveils The Fastest Business Jet In The World

The combination of a Mach 0.94 cruise and 8000-nautical-mile range makes it the king of business jets.

By Michael Verdon

24/05/2022

Robb Read: Are We On a Private Flight To Climate Hell?

Private aviation’s booming. Critics say flying’s wrecking the planet, but what are the facts?

By Mark Ellwood

23/05/2022

Buy the Magazine

Subscribe to Robb Report today!

Subscribe today

Stay Connected