[American Gets Onboard As Well!] Boom: United Orders Supersonic Jets!

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Update: American has now placed a non-refundable deposit on 20 of their own Boom aircraft, with an option to buy up to 60. They say that supersonic passenger flights should start in 2029.

Do you think that we will be commercially flying supersonic once again this decade, or are airlines investing in vaporware?

Originally posted on 6/3/21.

I’ve often lamented about missing the era of supersonic travel and when it might return.

After touring Airbus Headquarters and customizing an A330neo with an airline in Toulouse, it was sad seeing the parked Concorde outside, with its failed promise to change the way we travel:


But will today be a turning point in supersonic aviation?

United just announced that they have agreed to buy 15 Boom Overture Supersonic jets with an option to buy up to 50!

The plane from Denver startup Boom is expected to fly by 2026 and carry passengers by 2029, though timelines often slip in aviation.

The plane will fly at Mach 1.7 and could halve the time that it takes to fly existing routes. A flight from Newark to London would take 3.5 hours instead of 6.5 hours.

Newark to Tel Aviv in less than the time it takes to fly Newark to Los Angeles today? Sign me up!

United says that the plane will have similar economics to the 787 and will be carbon neutral. While the Dreamliner cruises at 561mph, the Overture will cruise at 1,304mph.

The plane will cruise at 60,000 feet and feature between 65-88 seats in a 1-1 all business class configuration.

It will be 75% more efficient than the Concorde and unlike the Concorde, it will be able to muffle its sonic boom, which should be enough to win approval to fly over land. Those issues along with safety concerns doomed the Concorde.

It’s too early to know if this will all come true, but it’s great to know that the supersonic dream isn’t dead!

Are you excited for a 2nd era of supersonic travel?

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67 Comments On "[American Gets Onboard As Well!] Boom: United Orders Supersonic Jets!"

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So would this be an all business class flight?


Unfortunately yes


feature between 65-88 seats in a 1-1 all business class configuration.


Bucket list item for sure – definitely lament the fact I didn’t fly when I had the chance.


Something tells me you will have to dish out cold cash for this one. Sorry, Dan.


Super excited!! A little cautiously optimistic though that they can deliver on these claims…


Same thoughts Irrc they are a startup = no track record


What’s the mileage range on these things? I always assumed it was relatively short because the routes from NY seemed to only go to western Europe.


If you’re referring to the old Concord routes, that’s because it wasn’t allowed to fly over land in lots of places because of the sonic boom.


Similar economics to a 787? Meaning if it’s configured in an all business configuration as opposed to a 787 with 3 classes. So that’s similar economics for United, but not for us common folk. 🙂


Start racking some miles!!!


How much do they weigh? With under 70 seats, could be Skywest or Commutair 🙂


with an option for an additional 35 aircraft not 50


That would be some awesome!
It could leave TLV at 8p and land in EWR at 8p local time


Actually, quicker than that, If you miss Mincha in TLV no problem, just fly to NY and get there on time for Mincha.


How’s that idea sound for a fast day like 17 Tamuz? Reversely, one can significantly shorten their fasting going towards Israel.


Would not be any different than with a regular flight


Probably easier to work out with your LOR than what Dan and the DD folks pulled off on their Antarctica cruise. 😉


That would be a great idea on Yom Kippur


Dan, I asked you about BOOM about a year ago, I’m so happy to see an article on it now! United is not the first airline to get on board. JAL has an agreement to purchase 20 and has invested in the company.


If these are “express” flights, they’ll likely be very expensive.


What’s the headroom in one of those? Looks low from the pic.


I found this video to be fascinating and informative.

He always has good stuff, and break things down to dummy levels.


I don’t get you Dan, you were super excited to fly a 19 hour flight to Maldives and now you want your flights shortened? Make up your mind!


I’ll fly when Spirit get’s one


Are you a spirit fan?


No, but I can’t afford the other ones.


Do I have to use a Boby pin to keep my yarmulke on during the flight?


don’t pin you hopes too high. Aviation development is a brutal field with the overwhelmingly vast majority going out of business. Aerion another supersonic contender just went out of business. the amount of capital necessary to develop, test and certify a supersonic jet is beyond the potential of a startup. the Concordes development was paid for by government EVEN when it was realized that it would never be economically viable (the famous sunk-cost concorde fallacy). Just the cost to develop and build four prototypes and fly them for at least 2500hrs. is in the several billions if not tens of billions. and then you have to tool up production facilities -another couple of billion.

All in all, it’s unlikely a startup will reintroduce supersonic travel – although as great of a technological marvel the concorde was – it was 40 years ago and we should be able to do better than that with modern technologies.


Oh, and I forgot to mention they don’t even have engines available for these aircraft yet. It’s highly unlikely that they’ll roll out in 2023 with first flights in 2025 considering such.

There are some serious technological hurdles to get there. just developing a medium bypass turbo fan capable of supercruise @mach 1.7 is a formidable challenge. to the best of my there are only a handful of engines in prodcution that are capable of supercruise and none of them are turbo fans. aircraft engine development is a long process and so even if this project takes off it will be many many years away.


Yeah great points. Way too soon to get excited–just look at Avion. It’s like the people throwing money at any company that says its building an EV (looking at you Nikola investors!)


Any chance they will fly to Israel?


2026! Ha! The difference between this imaginary plane and my imaginary plane is that my imaginary plane will be ready in 2024.


But Boom receives deposits in billions of dollars for their imagination and you get nothing for your imagination.


Why should I fly in business if there is no economy class behind me


i think if i start walking to Israel tomorrow ill get there quicker than this one! no?


I do find it odd, with all the advancements of technology, medicine, and engineering, the speed of a jet aircraft has basically remained stagnant for many decades (~550 mph). I look forward to an advancement, where a flight from NY to FLL is possible in under 1 hour, and a flight from NY to TLV is possible in under 5 hours.


Boom is a awful name for a airline.


I agree. Especially when it is replacing the concord, that exploded with a BOOM




notice how the amount of the “nonrefundable deposit” is “undisclosed.” This is a publicity gimmick and little else.


I don’t think I’d ever be able to justify spending so much more for saving a few hours. But I also would have a hard time flying first class (business is a different story). IMHO cost vs benefit is weak and with corporations scrutinizing business travel more than in the past, I don’t think this will be financially viable for the airlines.


Corporations will love this. They already pay far more for private/charter flights, and a lot of it has to do with getting to the destination as quickly as possible for timely matters.

And think of anyone earning $200k/annually, or roughly $1k per business day. Saving 4 hours on an 8 hour flight in each direction means the employee will have 2 extra days of work and will be will rested upon return.

Personally, would love this option for vacation, I can’t take off too long but would love to visit Hawaii among other places. Travel time is the biggest factor.

10th man

if its only a 3.5 hour flight to London (from NYC), do you really need lie flat seats? how much sleep are you getting on a 3.5 hour flight?


How do they plan to muffle the sonic boom?


With Arbis


I wonder if this will arrive before or after Teslas semi.

One thing for sure, they gotta change the name.
If you thought the 737max has a bad name now who’s flying on a plane call Boom!


Is it anticipated to carry the simple economy folks in the future, or is this only for the richies?


It should carry your grandkids in kolel


Thanks I wonder what will happen to united polaris if this actually happens