Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

This hypersonic jet could fly from London to New York in an hour

airbus-patent-2.jpg

"What's that sound?"

"That? Oh, it's just the turbojets warming up - nothing to worry about."

"Oh right... and that whistling noise? Is that okay?"

"Sure - those are the ramjets kicking in."

"A ram-what? And what was that boom?!"

"That was the rocket motor. Remind me never to sit with you on hypersonic jet."

This is the sort of mild panic we imagine will engulf nervous flyers the world over should Airbus make good on a design they've just patented

Titled ULTRA-RAPID AIR VEHICLE AND RELATED METHOD FOR AERIAL LOCOMOTION, the patent outlines a plane that would use "a system of motors formed by turbojets, ramjets and a rocket motor" to power a large aircraft to speeds of Mach 4.5 - over 3,000 miles per hour. Concorde only did Mach 2.

Airbus

Following in the footsteps (wing spans?) of supersonic jets such as Concorde and Tupolev Tu-144, the Airbus design claims to have increased speed and performance, whilst also reducing the "bang" produced when breaking the sound barrier - which would help remove one of the antisocial issues that has plagued previous jets. Its average cruising speed could see a journey between London and New York take one hour.

The patent relates to the specific shape of the plane, including a "gothic delta wing", and a system of motors - powered in part by hydrogen "which is liquid or in a state of melted snow (slush)". 

The plane would also cruise at an altitude 20km higher than most standard aircraft, nudging it toward the edge of Earth's atmosphere and avoiding air corridors that other planes navigate. 

While it may be many years before a commercial airline uses such a jet, the patent does detail some military uses for the design, including "strategic reconnaissance, ultra-rapid transports of high added-value goods, and also equipped with elite commandos... As with satellites, the air vehicle of the invention offers almost total invulnerability to conventional antiaircraft systems". Should a rich, paranoid nation fancy funding Airbus' design, it could arrive a lot sooner.

Until then, we're just going to have to stick the conventional eight hour flight time between London and New York. 

At least it means you can get a few films in, no?

Airbus

Related

hoverboard2.jpg

The Real-Life Hoverboard That You've Been Dreaming Of Is Finally Here

traffic3.jpg

This web game shows why self-driving cars are the future

humour8.jpg

If technology alerts were honest

sony.jpg

The Best Earphones Under £30

battery1.jpg

Hackers could spy on your phone via your battery

cable2.jpg

How To Stop Your iPhone Charger From Breaking So Easily

Comments

More

iPhone 8 rumours suggest it'll have a revolutionary curved screen

And it could be coming out NEXT YEAR!!!

by Jamie Carson
07 Dec 2016

Amazon is launching checkout-free shop where you simply walk out

Goodbye stubborn self-checkout machine, hello freakishly smart tech

by Emily Badiozzaman
06 Dec 2016

The Last Of Us 2 and nine more new Playstation games set for 2017

A certain spin-kicking marsupial is back, too!

by Chris Sayer
05 Dec 2016

New app will allow you to check the potency of your sperm

Get to know your baby makers up-close and personal

by Chris Sayer
05 Dec 2016

WhatsApp is about to stop working for millions of smartphone users

And it's bad news for Nokia or Blackberry users

by Tom Fordy
02 Dec 2016

Delete yourself from the internet with this handy website

And just like that, he was gone.

by Sam Diss
28 Nov 2016

Get on ‘Sindr’ the Catholic Church’s confession app

Swipe to find God in your area

24 Nov 2016

Apple to replace faulty batteries on iPhone 6s devices

21 Nov 2016

These are the worst passwords on the web

Best check yours isn't one of them

17 Nov 2016

What does Facebook really know about you

From ads to linked apps to everything in between

by David Cornish
17 Nov 2016