Virgin Galactic unveiled the design for its supersonic jet that could change the way we travel around the world.
The sleek plane is capable of shuttling up to 19 passengers, while traveling at speeds of Mach 3 – three times faster than the speed of sound.
The images show a plane with a triangular ‘delta wing’ that will fly at an altitude of more than 60,000 feet, which is twice as high as a traditional commercial airplane.
The aerospace company also announced a new partnership with Rolls-Royce to collaborate in designing and developing engine propulsion technology for the high speed commercial aircraft.
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The sleek airplane is capable of shuttling nine to 19 passengers, while traveling at speeds of Mach 3 – three times faster than the speed of sound.
Virgin Galactic first revealed its plans for a supersonic jet earlier this year, by announcing a partnership with NASA.
Through this partnership, the craft design passes a mission concept review – it can ‘meet the high-level requirements and objectives of the mission.’
However, Monday’s release shares the speeds at which this craft would be capable of flying and its newly formed agreement with Rolls-Royce.
George Whitesides, chief space officer, Virgin Galactic said, “We are excited to complete the Mission Concept Review and unveil this initial design concept of a high speed aircraft, which we envision as blending safe and reliable commercial travel with an unrivaled customer experience.’
The craft is said to travel in altitudes of 60,000 feet and can be customized to fit customers’ needs
‘We are pleased to collaborate with the innovative team at Rolls-Royce as we strive to develop sustainable, cutting-edge propulsion systems for the aircraft, and we are pleased to be working with the FAA to ensure our designs can make a practical impact from the start.’
‘We have made great progress so far, and we look forward to opening up a new frontier in high speed travel.’
The news includes more details regarding the supersonic jet, as it will have capacity for up to 19 passengers and fly at an altitude above 60,000 feet.
The firm is set to designed customized cabins to address customer needs, including business or first class seating arrangements.
Virgin Galactic is aiming to lead the way for of state-of-the-art sustainable aviation fuel.
The aerospace company also announced a new partnership with Rolls-Royce to collaborate in designing and developing engine propulsion technology for the high speed commercial aircraft. The team is set to start the next design phase shortly
The team is gearing up to start the next phase of design, which entails defining specific system architectures and configurations, and determining which materials to use in the design and manufacturing of the aircraft.
The team will also work to address key challenges in thermal management, maintenance, noise, emissions, and economics that routine high speed commercial flights would entail.
Pricing for seats have not been revealed, but Virgin Galactic is selling spots on its tourist spaceplane for $250,000.