Supersonic Jet Could Reach Speeds up to Mach 24

Trevor English

Taking your lunch break in another country may be soon become a reality, for a very hefty price tag. Canadian designer and engineer Charles Bombardier has proposed a new supersonic jet design. In late 2015, the same designer proposed a jet that could reach speeds upwards of mach 10 called the Skreemr. This idea gained a lot of interest as well as technical criticism, but Bombardier is doubling down on his proposal. The Antipode, is his new jet design that is estimated to be able to reach speeds of Mach 24, or 24 times the speed of sound. At a max capacity of 10 people, this new concept plane would be able to carry passengers from New York to London in 11 minutes.

ANTIPODE-supersonic-jet-design[Image Source: Imaginactive]

Many question the practicality or even feasibility of constructing a jet that can reach speeds of 20,000 km/hr, but the Canadian engineer believes it will be possible. The new supersonic concept utilizes detachable rocket thrusters and a magnetic rail launching system to reach cruising speed. Working in collaboration with other engineers, Bombardier has designed the Antipode to function as a 'Scramjet'. These unique concept planes gain maximum thrust through combustion of liquid oxygen, but rather than carry this fuel onboard, the oxygen is compressed due to the incredibly high travel speed. Scramjet capabilities are still in question, as the implementation of such would require a minimum travel speed of mach 4, which has never been achieved in a passenger jet design. The closest to reach this speed was the Concorde, still only reaching speeds of an incredible mach 2.

antipode-jet[Image Source: Imaginactive]

Aside from the fact that a jet with the Antipode's anticipated capabilities has never been designed, engineers still think that the Antipode concept is achievable. The jet would be able to launch from any airfield, with its rocket thrusters carrying the plane to 40,000 feet in altitude, reaching mach 5. At this point, the plane's reusable jet engines would detach and safely return to the hanger, as the Antipode ignited its scramjet engines. Utilizing surface channels, the plane would funnel air across the nose and wings effectively cooling the surface temperature of the plane due to traveling at such high speeds. These channels would also help reduce the supersonic boom noise created by the insane travel speed.

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mach 24-jet-design[Image Source: Imaginactive]

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Designers and engineers still need to solve the problems of how passengers on the plane would be able to handle the extreme g-forces created by takeoff and landing. On top of this, currently there is no proven method that can be used to slow the plane from its blistering supersonic speeds. The only concept for slowing the plane down is reverse rocket thrusters, but the ability to implement them is still in question.

antipode-supersonic jet[Image Source: Imaginactive]

If the concept design can gain enough interest, it may be possible to build such an aircraft through worldwide collaboration of designers and engineers. One thing is certain though, if the plane ever does get built, it will cost an exorbitant amount of money to become a passenger. Bombardier would not even quote a price range when asked, only saying that is will be the most expensive commercial trip ever.

skreemr-jet-design supersonic jetA look at the Skreemr, Antipodes Predecessor [Image Source: Imaginactive]

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