Boom supersonic jet plan boosted by $10-mn JAL funding

Boom supersonic jet plan boosted by $10-mn JAL funding

Boom Technology Inc., based at Centennial Airport in Arapahoe County, and Tokyo-based Japan Airlines announced Tuesday that JAL is investing $10 million in Boom, will consult with the company about aircraft design and has the option to order 20 of Boom's ultra-fast jets in the future.

The Japanese airline yesterday said it has invested US$10 million in Boom Supersonic, a Denver-based start-up aiming to build a new generation of supersonic jets promising three-and-a-half-hour flights from London to NY for an "affordable" US$5,000 return as soon as 2025.

The aim is to produce a "reliable, easily-maintained aircraft that will provide revolutionary speed to passengers", said Blake Scholl, founder and CEO of Boom Supersonic.

Boom reportedly has 76 preorders, not including the option of 20 aircraft from Japan Airlines, for its plane that would travel at Mach 2.2, over two times the speed of sound and faster than the Concorde, which maxed out at around Mach 2. Yet while NIMBYs may have cheered its final departure, the time-poor transatlantic traveller still misses that three-hour London-to-New-York travel time.

"JAL's passionate, visionary team offers decades of practical knowledge and wisdom on everything from the passenger experience to technical operations", Scholl said.

Civilians haven't been able to buy a ticket to fly supersonic since Concorde was retired from in 2003.

The money the company already has is more than enough to get it through developing a small two-seat demonstration aircraft and conducting its first test flight, he said. The XB-1, "baby boom" as it is nicknamed, will apparently be faster, quieter and more profitable than Concorde ever was.

In an age where we're legitimately anxious about hyper-intelligent robots taking our jobs, you'd have thought supersonic flights would have been a piece of cake, but the forces that grounded Concorde are there.

Enter Boom Supersonic, a start-up-cum-development project that hopes to make supersonic travel all of the above.

A flight between Sydney and Los Angeles would take seven hours, which includes the time required for a refuelling stop enroute.

Branson has the rights to the first 10 Boom aircraft produced.

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