Boom, the supersonic future airliner

December 7, 2016 | 03:40
Baby Boom and Full size Boom
Baby Boom and Full size Boom
It’s been 13 years since Concorde was withdrawn from service and the company Boom thinks it’s high time a replacement was built. With the benefit of the latest high-tech materials and engine technology Concorde’s successor will not only be faster but also cheaper.

Since its withdrawal passengers on commercial flights have been limited to subsonic speeds only. A trip across the Pond can take anywhere between seven to nine hours and down under can take the best part of a day. That could all be set to change. Since the Soviet Tupolev Tu-144 and the European Concorde, none of the major aerospace companies has considered the development of a new supersonic airliner a viable proposition. Too expensive, complex and financially risky… but maybe it takes a new company with a fresh eye to see the opportunities. A small aerospace company called Boom has revealed their plans to build just such an aircraft.

Boom has accumulated a wealth of expertise working on projects for major players such as Boeing, Pratt and Whitney, Virgin Galactic and Lockheed Martin.  They think it’s odd, 60 years after the introduction of commercial jet powered airliners, we are still pottering around sub sonically. The scaled-down two-seater XB-1 Supersonic demonstrator (baby Boom) should be flying by the end of next year to test the concept. The picture shows drawings of the prototype and the final full-size version will have 45 seats and be able to travel at Mach 2.2 - 10% more than Concorde and more than 2.5 times more than today's passenger jets. The concept is not revolutionary but instead an evolution based on technical progress; fuel efficient engines without the need for afterburners and carbon composite materials to build airframes with improved aerodynamics and which cost less to produce. According to Boom a flight from Europe to North America will ‘only’ cost $ 2,500, that’s less than 40% of a ticket on Concorde. With a flight time of around three hours it will be a real alternative for business customers.
 
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