Boom Technology, the company that plans to build a commercially-viable supersonic airliner within the next few years, took several steps closer to the goal this month, announcing plans for an assembly plant in North Carolina and getting new funding from the U.S. Air Force.
The plane, called Boom Overture, is to be a 65-88 seat plane with a range of nearly 5,000 miles. The company says it expects to fly a prototype in 2026 and have the plane ready to enter service in 2030, flying at speeds up to 1300 mph, significantly faster than Concorde and costing less per mile to operate while burning 'sustainable' fuel.
The 400,000 square foot factory, announced by Boom and North Carolina officials, will be in Greensboro, near the Piedmont Triad airport. The company says it expects to hire 1,750 employees by 2030. The factor is to open in 2024.
The delta-wing plane is designed to be powered by three high-efficiency 'dry' turbofans; the fuselage will make extensive use of composites. A one-third scale version, nicknamed Baby Boom has been under constructed and the company plans flight tests this year.
While there have been many plans since Concorde for a supersonic airliner, this one appears to have garnered the most support. In addition to the three-year $60 million Air Force investment, the company has raised capital from a wide range of investors, including Japan Airlines, and has orders for 76 planes, including 15 from United Airlines, which also has an option on 35 more.