Chinese company Space Transportation is developing a supersonic aircraft capable of traveling from Beijing to NY in just one hour.
However, it’s utterly unlike anything else we’ve seen before in this space.
That’s because there’s actually two components to the craft, as there’s a winged rocket that attaches to it to get it up to supersonic speeds.
READ MORE: The Overture from Boom Supersonic will be the fastest jet in the world
Initially designed for space travel, the company also aims to use the aircraft for point-to-point business travel.
At take-off, the plane itself is attached to a glider wing with two rocket boosters.
These help get it up to the immense speeds and heights that it travels at, before detaching and returning to the launch pad.
Another rocket in the back of the plane itself then keeps it at speed as it heads to its destination in record time.
The roughly 7000km journey from Beijing to New York would be handled in just one hour.
However, it’s typical cruising speed would be around 4180km/h (2600mph).
The plane would fly through suborbital space – much higher than a traditional jet.
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Then, when it comes in to land, it lands on its end as it doesn’t have any wheels to taxi down the runway on.
Given how fast it is – and how short journeys would be – the cabin is quite minimalist.
All it features are individual seats on either side with strong harnesses to hold you in at the immense speeds it hits.
The company claims that the aircraft will be “lower in cost than rockets that carry satellites and faster than traditional aircraft”.
It claims to have completed successful rocket tests as well, but hasn’t detailed what those tests entailed.
However, the company last year claimed to have already raised $46.3 million for the project.
It plans to commence ground testing next year, with an initial test flight in 2024 and a test flight with a crew in 2025.
Supersonic air travel has been poised to return for a while now, with several aircraft trying to pick up where Concorde left off.
The Boom Supersonic Overture, NASA’s X-59 by Lockheed Martin, and Bombardier Global 8000 are also names worth raising in the conversation.