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American Airlines places big bet on supersonic travel

American Airlines places big bet on supersonic travel

American Airlines places big bet on supersonic travel
Aug 16, 2022 1 min, 40 secs

American Airlines has put down a nonrefundable deposit for 20 supersonic passenger jets that are still being designed and years away from flying.

It's unclear how long it will take for the planes to be built, let alone ready to take off with commercial passengers aboard, as the aircrafts — made by Boom Supersonic — do not yet have an engine maker.

Boom said it expects the airplanes to be operational by 2029, which would mark the first time a private company has made a supersonic aircraft. .

Spike Aerospace is developing an ultra-fast business jet, and startup Hermeus is developing a plane that would travel five times the speed of sound. .

The deal includes an option for the carrier to purchase an additional 40 aircraft, which would carry 65 to 80 passengers, Boom Supersonic said in an announcement Tuesday. .

"Looking to the future, supersonic travel will be an important part of our ability to deliver for our customers," Derek Kerr, chief financial officer at American, said in a statement.

"We are excited about how Boom will shape the future of travel both for our company and our customers.".

It has been nearly 20 years since the last supersonic passenger flight by the Concorde, the British-French plane that failed to catch on because of stratospheric costs and safety concerns.

Jenks noted that American's investment suggests the company is bullish about business travel rebounding from pandemic lows. .

"It's interesting that this order is being placed around the same time as everyone worrying about the return of business travel," he said.

But for senior-level executives and business travelers, people for whom time is money, supersonic travel might be viewed as very attractive," he said.

"There are tens of millions of passengers every year flying in business class on routes where Overture will give a big speed-up," Boom CEO Blake Scholl said in an interview.

"I'm really surprised American decided to announce this given all the questions that exist about when an engine will become available for this plane," Harteveldt said


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