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  #1  
Old 18 Nov 15, 16:55
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Supersonic Business Jet

Billionaire's Supersonic Jet Advances With Factory Plans, Airbus

EXCERPT:
Aerion, the supersonic-jet maker backed by Texas billionaire Robert Bass, plans to choose a manufacturing site during the first half of next year as it targets delivering the first faster-than-sound business aircraft in 2023.
The timeline unveiled Monday fleshes out how Aerion and partner Airbus Group SE intend to build a civilian plane capable of trans-sonic travel, a niche left vacant since the retirement of the Concorde in 2003. The team has made preliminary designs for a carbon-fiber wing structure, fuselage, landing gear and a fuel system, among other components.
“We see clear and achievable technical solutions to the design of a supersonic jet, and a realistic road map for helping Aerion proceed toward construction and flight,” Airbus Senior Vice President Ken McKenzie said in a statement.
Airbus will provide major components and Aerion will do the final assembly, the companies said in the statement released at the National Business Aviation Association trade show in Las Vegas. For the production site, Aerion needs a 100-acre (40-hectare) area near a U.S. airport with a runway at least 9,000 feet (2,700 meters) long, The plan is to break ground on the factory in 2018.
Aerion is targeting the first flight of the AS2 for 2021. The project began in 2002 and was put on hold by the 2008-09 financial crisis.

...
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articl...y-plans-airbus


Since this concerns advances in technology, I thought this sub-forum the best for now to place this.
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  #2  
Old 18 Nov 15, 18:49
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It will likely turn out like the supersonic passenger jet did...not a money maker. It's too much technology and cost to justify the small savings in time, and it won't be eco-friendly, either.

The best overall idea to help aviation become profitable again?

SLOW DOWN.

After that, stop treating paying customers like cattle.
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Old 18 Nov 15, 19:48
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Transatlantic - unless hypersonic the time saving is just never going to be worth it but real long haul - say London to Indonesia or Australia that's different. Having done that even in business it's a pain in the bum (literally) and knocking hours off that might be worth it.
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Old 19 Nov 15, 05:59
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Not general commercial air travel transport folks, "PRIVATE"~Business application here. Proof will be in orders for such 'limited', special use vehicles
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Old 19 Nov 15, 12:11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkV View Post
Transatlantic - unless hypersonic the time saving is just never going to be worth it but real long haul - say London to Indonesia or Australia that's different. Having done that even in business it's a pain in the bum (literally) and knocking hours off that might be worth it.
But how many can afford it?

The heavily subsidized Concorde couldn't make a go of it, and America never even got it's SST into service, and those were public passenger aircraft attempting to tap entire national and international markets.

Realistically, how big is the market for privately owned supersonic aircraft? How many rich people actually need to travel far enough often enough to make that speed worth the cost?

Seems to me to fall into the Jurassic Park category: "Just because you can do something doesn't mean you should...or that it's even a good idea."
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Old 19 Nov 15, 14:30
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I don't know about business but there might be a viable luxury market. Billionaire's, movie stars, oligarchs. The kind of people who literally leave the cost considerations at the estate door when they travel.

I was watching a documentary on Smithsonian recently (Great Planes?). The Concord did make money in the final few years before the accident when they dropped out of all markets other than First Class/ultra luxury. $4k and up per seat was acceptable to the champagne for breakfast set.

However this new proposal might be too small/short ranged for that.
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Old 19 Nov 15, 15:11
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I don't know about business but there might be a viable luxury market. Billionaire's, movie stars, oligarchs. The kind of people who literally leave the cost considerations at the estate door when they travel.

I was watching a documentary on Smithsonian recently (Great Planes?). The Concord did make money in the final few years before the accident when they dropped out of all markets other than First Class/ultra luxury. $4k and up per seat was acceptable to the champagne for breakfast set.

However this new proposal might be too small/short ranged for that.
But it can't be short-ranged, because there is no future at all for a "short-range supersonic aircraft". It's pointless because the expense isn't justified. Short haul passenger aircraft (less than 1000 miles) as it is spend too much time ascending and descending to spend much time at actual max cruising speed.

Sure, there's a luxury market for everything including solid gold plumbing fixtures, but is it enough to support an industry as complex as one that manufactures personal supersonic passenger aircraft? And how does this help anyone except the very, very few?
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Old 19 Nov 15, 17:41
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Definitely a niche product at best.
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Old 20 Nov 15, 18:52
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Definitely a niche product at best.
I think that is what the OP article is suggesting.

Large, "hundred" seat commercial market might still be a long ways off. With improved airframe and engine designs of the last few decades (post Concorde) there is a market for the "speed over costs" focused consumer and/or the "courier" market.

Other than military warplanes and/or some recon craft (?), there isn't anything for the civilian market with supersonic capability, in this case about 1.5 mach over water (the plane will fly sub-sonic over land~populated areas).
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Old 20 Nov 15, 23:12
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I'm surprised this is a new thing. Supersonic flight is old news.


The only real disadvantage is fuel costs, but if you can afford the plane, you can afford the fuel...
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Old 21 Nov 15, 11:06
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I'm surprised this is a new thing. Supersonic flight is old news.


The only real disadvantage is fuel costs, but if you can afford the plane, you can afford the fuel...
First mooted in 1977
A preliminary study of the performance and characteristics of a supersonic executive aircraft: September 1977 (NASA technical memorandum) There have been about 30 proposals/projects since then (the Soviet Union even did one) but nothing on the market yet
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Old 21 Nov 15, 19:03
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We'll see how the definitive, market driven answer plays out. Heaven knows there are enough filthy rich people with money to burn; it's just a question of how much of a hurry are they in to do so?

Commercially, the big Three didn't make a go of it - the American Boeing SST was a flop and never even reached production, the Concorde lasted a while and then folded, and the Russian Konkordski lasted even more briefly.

Personally, I would much rather see more of Rutan's designs in operation than have private aircraft shooting through the flight lanes like stray rounds and a biker rally.

Interestingly, the technology of today makes the need for speed largely irrelevant since one can meet someone virtually in a matter of mere minutes, and without the huge carbon footprint.

As for travel time, if I were going to someplace like Australia, almost a 24 hour flight form here, I would want to go slower but have a way to get some decent sleep during the journey. The old Pan Am Clippers would do me very nicely.
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Old 30 Nov 15, 16:07
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British technology company to 'transform' air and space travel with pioneering new engine design

Reaction Engines says its invention will allow airliners to fly at five times the speed of sound

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/n...ne-design.html
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Old 30 Nov 15, 16:35
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Been around as a concept for years - got whiskers on it.
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Old 30 Nov 15, 20:22
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Been around as a concept for years - got whiskers on it.
Many concepts are like that, just waiting for the "right tech(tweak)" to come along ...

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