30 March 2016

Return of supersonic flights

I remember the Concorde Era and last campaign of British Airways to experience a supersonic flight with legendary Concorde from London to New York. I was working for Swissair and entitled to have a discounted ticket, but not enough budget as a young marketing executive.

Since then I have thought about the length of flight times and reintroduction of supersonic flights by using advanced technology. Introduction of new generation aircrafts such as B787 and A350 brought some improvements to the cabin and passenger comfort, significant reduction in fuel consumption and operational efficiency but time.

My latest long-haul flights from Istanbul were to Sao Paolo and Johannesburg. Each of them was more than 10 hours. Personally, I can manage flights up to 6 hours, but longer flights are a waste of time, even if you fly in Business Class.

New Era

Finally, a company called Boom announced the return of supersonic flights. In an interview, Blake Scholl, the founder and chief executive of Boom, said; “This isn’t science fiction, we are actually doing this. You will be able to fly New York to London in three-and-a-half hours for $5,000 return, [which is roughly] the same as [the cost] of business class.”

Sir Richard Branson says Virgin will partner with Boom to build and test plane to succeed where Concorde failed – ‘this lets you commute’ across oceans.

Boom planes will travel 2.6 times faster than any other aircraft, up to speeds of 1,451 miles per hour – Concorde's top speed was in the region of 1,350 miles per hour.

Each vessel will have 40 seats in two rows on either side of the aisle, and will allow passengers to travel from London to New York in under 3hr 30min, which is almost half of the current flight time between two cities. I believe that this new initiative will pave the way to more affordable supersonic flights in a decade. Good luck gentlemen!

Please click here to read the full story published in The Guardian or visit the official website of the project; boom.aero