Remember SST that flew super fast from New York to Paris?
A supersonic transport (SST) or a supersonic airliner is a civilian supersonic aircraft designed to transport passengers at speeds greater than the speed of sound. To date, the only SSTs to see regular service have been Concorde and the Tupolev Tu-144. The last passenger flight of the Tu-144 was in June 1978 and it was last flown in 1999 by NASA. Concorde’s last commercial flight was in October 2003, with a November 26, 2003 ferry flight being its last airborne operation. Following the permanent cessation of flying by Concorde, there are no remaining SSTs in commercial service. Several companies have each proposed a supersonic business jet, which may bring supersonic transport back again.The Concorde supersonic transport had an ogivaldelta wing, a slender fuselage and four underslung Rolls-Royce/Snecma Olympus 593 engines.The Tupolev Tu-144 was the first SST to enter service and the first to leave it. Only 55 passenger flights were carried out before service ended due to safety concerns. A small number of cargo and test flights were also carried out after its retirement.
Supersonic airliners have been the objects of numerous recent and ongoing design studies. Drawbacks and design challenges are excessive noise generation (at takeoff and due to sonic booms during flight), high development costs, expensive construction materials, high fuel consumption, extremely high emissions, and an increased cost per seat over subsonic airliners. Despite these challenges, Concorde was claimed to operate profitably, although that was due to write off of all development and construction costs plus the willingness of passengers to pay high fares.
And make no mistake, Supersonic Flight has. It been forgotten-
While conventional turbo and ramjet engines are able to remain reasonably efficient up to Mach 5.5, some ideas for very high-speed flight above Mach 6 are also sometimes discussed, with the aim of reducing travel times down to one or two hours anywhere in the world. These vehicle proposals very typically either use rocket or scramjet engines; pulse detonation engines have also been proposed. There are many difficulties with such flight, both technical and economic.
Rocket-engined vehicles, while technically practical (either as ballistic transports or as semiballistic transports using wings), would use a very large amount of propellant and operate best at speeds between about Mach 8 and orbital speeds. Rockets compete best with air-breathing jet engines on cost at very long range; however, even for antipodal travel, costs would be only somewhat lower than orbital launch costs.
At the June 2011 Paris Air Show, EADS unveiled its ZEHST concept, cruising at Mach 4 (4,400 km/h; 2,400 kn) at 105,000 ft (32,000 m) and attracting Japanese interest. The German SpaceLiner is a suborbital hypersonic winged passenger spaceplane project under preliminary development.
Precooled jet engines are jet engines with a heat exchanger at the inlet that cools the air at very high speeds. These engines may be practical and efficient at up to about Mach 5.5, and this is an area of research in Europe and Japan. The British company Reaction Engines Limited, with 50% EU money, has been engaged in a research programme called LAPCAT, which examined a design for a hydrogen-fueled plane carrying 300 passengers called the A2, potentially capable of flying at Mach 5+ nonstop from Brussels to Sydney in 4.6 hours. The follow-on research effort, LAPCAT II began in 2008 and was to last four years.
STRATOFLY MR3 is an EU research program (German Aerospace Center, ONERA and universities) with the goal of developing a cryogenic fuel 300-passenger airliner capable to fly at about 10,000 Km/h (Mach 8) above 30 km of altitude.
Boeing Hypersonic airliner
Boeing unveiled at the AIAA 2018 conference a Mach 5 (5,400 km/h; 2,900 kn) passenger transport. Crossing the Atlantic in 2 hours or the Pacific in 3 at 95,000 ft (29 km) would enable same-day return flights, increasing airlines’ asset utilization. Using a titanium airframe, its capacity would be smaller than a Boeing 737 but larger than a long-range business jet. A reusable demonstrator could be flown as early as 2023 or 2024 for a potential entry into service from the late 2030s. Aerodynamics would benefit from the Boeing X-51 Waverider experience, riding the leading edge shockwave for lower induced drag. Flow control would enhance lift at slower speeds, and avoiding afterburners on takeoff would reduce noise.
The Boeing hypersonic transport would be powered by a turboramjet, a turbofan that transitions to a ramjet at Mach 5 would avoid the need for a ramjet, similar to the SR-71 Blackbird‘s Pratt & Whitney J58, but shutting off the turbine at higher speeds. It would be integrated in an axisymmetric annular layout with a single intake and nozzle, and a bypass duct around the turbine engine to a combination afterburner/ramjet at the rear. It would need advanced cooling technology like the heat exchanger developed by Reaction Engines, maybe using liquid methane and/or jet fuel.
Cruising at 90,000–95,000 feet (27,000–29,000 m) makes depressurisation a higher risk. Mach 5 was chosen as the limit achievable with available technology. It would have a high capacity utilization, being able to cross the Atlantic four or five times a day, up from a possible twice a day with the Concorde.
But noe comes an Airline stepping-up and purchasing Supersonic Planes!
Overture is the first airliner in a new era of enduring supersonic flight. We’re building on Concorde’s legacy through faster, more efficient, and sustainable technology.
65 to 88
4250 NM (4888 MI)
Supersonic travel by 2029
Follow the path to passenger flight with SVP of Overture Development Brian Durrence.
All images are attributed to Boom Supersonic and accompanied by the notice: “Copyright © 2021 Boom Supersonic.”