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Airbus patents a jet capable of flying at 5500 km/h

August 6, 2015 Aviation, Headline News 1 Comment Email Email

egtmedia59Imagine flying from Sydney to Los Angeles in less than three hours. That’s the promise of an “ultra-rapid air vehicle” that aircraft manufacturer Airbus has just patented.

The US Patent and Trademark Office approved the patent last month, Time magazine reports. The patent describes a hypersonic jet more than twice as fast as the supersonic Concorde.

Old airline hands who remember the days of the Beatles – and a couple of decades thereafter – may recall the Concorde flying the Atlantic.

While commercial jets took eight hours to fly from New York to Paris or London, the Concorde’s average supersonic flight time on the transatlantic routes was just under 3.5 hours. Concorde, developed partly by a company now owned by Airbus, had an average cruising speed of Mach 2.02, about 1334 mph (2140 km/h) – or more than twice the speed of sound and well over twice the speed of today’s passenger jet aircraft.

Airbus hypersonic patent

The new Airbus hypersonic jet can beat the Concorde record by using new turbojets and a hydrogen power system, the patent states.

Some analysts say the “ultra-rapid air vehicle and related method of aerial locomotion” patented by Airbus’s Marco Prampolini and Yohann Coraboeuf could reach speeds as high as Mach 4.5 – or four and half times the speed of sound. That’s about 5512 km/h. It could fly between London and New York in an hour.

Don’t hold your breath however.

“It’s unlikely that the hypersonic jet will become a reality any time soon,” Time notes.

Another decade or two may slip by, it seems, before passenger jets become as fast as they were in the 1970s.

Written by Peter Needham

Currently there is "1 comment" on this Article:

  1. AgentGerko says:

    The fastest subsonic trans-Atlantic journey was done by a Vickers VC10, an aircraft that was scrapped around 40 years ago, which sadly shows how little priority manufacturers give to speed these days. If the Americans could have gotten their Boeing 2707 supersonic transport flying, or if the Russian Il-144 had not been a basket case, we’d probably all be flying supersonic by now, but the Americans didn’t want to lose their market share and so did everything possible to stop sales of Concorde. As a result we’re flying across the Big Pond on things like Boeing 767’s that couldn’t beat a 1960’s Convair jetliner. There’ll be no commercial supersonic jetliners under construction this side of 2050.

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