Gulf investors for Hypermach
A British company that is attempting to construct a supersonic jet capable of flying from London to New York in just two hours has said a prototype by 2023 could well be feasible, thanks to backing from wealthy Gulf partners.
Hypermach has been working on such a project since 2005, with the initial findings leading to contracts with the US Air Force and Rolls Royce.
It is anticipated the SonicStar jet, as it will be called, will be able to reach speeds of up to Mach 3.6 (2,740 miles per hour) and will fly at heights of around 18,300 metres. This will effectively reduce flights to New York to two hours, while Sydney will be reachable within five.
Richard Lugg, chief executive of Hypermach, told Arabian Business that the project will require an estimated $2-3 billion (£1.1-1.7 billion) in funding in order to have a prototype running within ten years.
“We are going to be in Abu Dhabi presenting at the Global Aerospace Summit there in April,” he told Arabian Business, adding he has a number of interested parties who understand the long-term goal of the project.
“With projects like this, and the risk and time, we build small first and then build full scale,” Mr Lugg explained, when asked by the publication for a status update.
“On the airframe side we have been working on the design of SonicStar (and) we start tests in the wind tunnel in the States this spring.”
Abu Dhabi-based investors recently made headline news when they financed Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic, which will offer tourists flights into space, allowing them to experience zero-gravity.