United Airlines has announced plans to purchase 15 new supersonic airliners from Boom Supersonic and ‘return supersonic speeds to aviation’ by 2029. The purchase of the new Overture aircraft would be completed “once Overture meets United’s demanding safety, operating and sustainability requirements”.
A supersonic flight is where an aircraft travels faster than the speed of sound. Where a typical passenger plane typically cruises at 560mph, Overture is expected to reach speeds of 1,122mph – otherwise known as Mach 1.7. Subsequently, journey times on transatlantic routes such as London to New York will be cut in half.
Boom Supersonic also has pre-orders for the Overture aircraft from Japan Airlines and the Virgin Group, however United is the first American airline to sign an agreement. Overture is currently expected to be rolled out in 2025, take flight in 2026 and carry passengers by 2029.
Scott Kirby, United Airline’s CEO commented:
“United continues on its trajectory to build a more innovative, sustainable airline and today’s advancements in technology are making it more viable for that to include supersonic planes.
Boom’s vision for the future of commercial aviation, combined with the industry’s most robust route network in the world, will give business and leisure travellers access to a stellar flight experience. Our mission has always been about connecting people and now working with Boom, we’ll be able to do that on an even greater scale.”