London to New York in two hours – even with a long bridge and a Bugatti Chiron Super Sport, you can’t beat that. Only the refueling periods in between will take longer together. NASA is now investigating whether it is possible to build a passenger plane that can fly at Mach 4. That’s twice as fast as the Concorde (pictured above) achieved.
Shifted to 4900km/h, the Mach 4 is almost ten times faster than a Chiron Super Sport 300+ or 122 times faster than the average passenger car in reverse. Most regular passenger aircraft reach speeds of just under 1,000 kilometers per hour. According to NASA, there are about fifty trajectories whose travel time could be significantly reduced using a Mach 4 airliner.
Mach 4 speed is often not allowed on the ground
Flying at supersonic speeds is not permitted over the United States and many other countries. That’s why NASA is mainly looking at flights across the Atlantic Ocean, that is, over the sea. NASA has commissioned two teams to conduct a twelve-month research into an airliner that can reach Mach 4.
Both Boeing and Northrop Grumman Aeronautics Systems lead their own cross-company teams. Both teams are charting a potential path for how to make supersonic passenger flights possible again. They are conducting research on engines, but also on the use of materials for such aircraft. They will also present concept aircraft.
Once plans and concepts are received from both teams, NASA will see if they want to continue with the plan. In addition, NASA itself is working on the X-59. This is a very quiet SST. NASA wants to collect data to see if they can enable flight above Earth at hypersonic speeds. Exciting developments…
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