Japan to Develop New Supersonic Jet

Japan will meet with NASA in June to discuss a possible partnership for development of a supersonic jet that will replace the Concorde. The new jet will be able to travel 5,000 miles per hour, or 10 times faster than today’s airplanes. Its Supersonic Combustion Ramjet engine, or scramjet as it’s known, will enable it to fly between Los Angeles and Tokyo in three hours.

The Japanese scramjet engine will generate only one percent of the Concorde’s noise level, and will be more efficient than the fuel hogging Concorde. Because of Japan’s current lack of success during test phases for the new jet, they’re hoping NASA and Boeing engineers can help them. Boeing is expected to develop the plane’s airframe. Japan hopes to have the Concorde’s replacement operational by 2025. Engineers don’t expect a prototype of the supersonic jet to be ready before 2016.