RENO, Nev., July 23 (UPI) — Supersonic air travel, halted in 2003 with the retirement of trans-Atlantic Concorde service, may be coming back, one U.S. aerospace company says.
The Aerion Supersonic Business Jet will carry a dozen passengers at a speed of Mach 1.5 — about 1,100 miles an hour — for 4,000 miles, Aerion Corp., which has headquarters in Reno, Nev., said on its Web site.
Named for a fleet-of-foot horse in Greek mythology, the design has undergone proof-of-concept aerodynamic testing in supersonic wind tunnels, the company says.
The Aerion SBJ will fly from Paris to New York in 4 hours, 14 minutes, the company said, about 3 hours quicker than conventional jets.
Aerion hopes to have its design certified by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration and in the air by 2015.
The company says it has more than 50 orders for the $80 million jet.
Air travel took a step backward with the retirement of the Concorde, the company says, and it wants to change that.
“The fastest commercial aircraft we ever had are in a museum,” Aerion Vice Chairman Brian Barents says. “That’s not progress.”
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