Human innovation has always pushed us to go farther in less time and more comfortably. Now, from the lessons of The Concord, comes NASA’s X-Plane: a piloted jet that will travel faster than the speed of sound, without the sonic boom… and intended for commercial use.
Virtually silent supersonic travel. That could very well be the future modern civilisation faces. With its uniquely engineered hull which measures to almost twenty-nine metres in length and about nine metres in wingspan, this thing of beauty has been designed to minimise pressure waves and shockwaves as much as possible. Additionally, the cruising altitude of this experimental aircraft will be that of “… 55,000 feet (16,764 meters)…”, and at a speed of about 1513km per hour.
Of course, such a feat of aeronautical mechanics does not come cheap. As indicated by the $247.5 million USD contract signed between NASA and Lockheed Martin on April the 2nd of this year. This $247.5 million USD covers both construction and preliminary delivery of the X-Plane by 2021, as well as pursuing approval for commercial use in 2025.
This could conceivably be the New Age Concord. Improved in every operational facet, and the metallic poster child for modern day air travel.
How do you think this baby will fare come 2025?