This hypersonic jet flies at Mach 7 and weighs less than a city car

Published on Jun 13, 2023 at 2:46 PM (UTC+4)
by Alessandro Renesis

Last updated on Jun 23, 2023 at 3:33 PM (UTC+4)
Edited by Kate Bain

This hypersonic jet flies at Mach 7 and weighs less than a city car

This bullet-shaped aircraft is known as the ‘Dart AE’, and it is a hypersonic jet capable of flying at Mach 7.

Friendly reminder that Mach 7 is equivalent to 5,370 mph.

And this means this jet is nearly 10 times faster than a Boeing 737 or an Airbus 380 you may use to travel to your favorite destination in the summer.

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Dart AE is being developed by Hypersonix Launch Systems, an Australian company, in partnership with the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD).

This jet is part of a testing program the DoD is working on.

As you can imagine, the DOD came up with a super cool and complicated name for this program.

They call it HyCAT, which stands for High-Cadence Airborne Testing Capabilities.

We presume this is because “Fast-As-Heck” was taken.

Dart AE is surprisingly compact.

It is only nine feet, eight inches long, which means it is actually shorter than a Fiat 500 or a MINI.

It is lightweight, too, tipping the scales at just 660 pounds or 300 kg.

Part of the reason why this jet is so light is the entire airframe is 3D printed.

But the best part about it is the engine.

This ultra-fast jet is powered by hydrogen, and it has a range of 620 miles when traveling at Mach 7.

At full chat, DART AE would theoretically be capable of covering the distance between Portland and San Francisco in just 10 minutes.

The propulsion system it uses is based on the same technology that space rockets use.

It is called Spartan and, according to Hypersonix, it can easily reach speeds in excess of 9,000 mph – or Mach 12.

Several companies are working on new projects but commercial supersonic flights are no longer available.

The Concorde (above, left) was retired in 2003 and the Tupolev (above, right), a Soviet airliner capable of reaching Mach 2, was discontinued in 1999.

Things get even more complicated when it comes to hypersonic, ie Mach 5 or above.

Supersonic and / or hypersonic transport may be available at some point in the future, but we wouldn’t hold our breath.

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Alessandro Renesis

Experienced content creator with a strong focus on cars and watches. Alessandro penned the first-ever post on the Supercar Blondie website and covers cars, watches, yachts, real estate and crypto. Former DriveTribe writer, fixed gear bike owner, obsessed with ducks for some reason.