Plans for New York to Tokyo in under an hour

8th May 2014
Written by: Rebecca Root

Branson goes supersonic 

Space travel is just so yesterday

The billionaire Virgin Group Founder says that his next venture will target the new age need for speed and will fly passengers from New York to Tokyo in under an hour.

Reaching for the stars, Sir Branson has already launched a spaceship in preparation for a new wave of travel that will be out of this world and now plans to turn his attention to ultimate acceleration.

Speaking to CNBC, the 61 year old entrepreneur said:

If we get it right, New York to Tokyo could be less than an hour. You could be travelling at 19,000mph orbitally.

After over twenty years in the pipeline the Virgin Galactic programme is finally getting off the ground and the Virgin boss is ready to embark on a new mission.

After we've done the space program, we will be producing supersonic planes, which will go far, far, faster than [the] Concorde.

Up until ten years ago, the Concorde had been the fastest commercial flight in the world making the journey between New York and London in just three hours. But, after 27 years in service, British Airways retired its Concorde and since then there’s been a space in the industry for a super speedy travel option.

Sir Richard wants to shoot past the Concorde’s top speed of than 2000km/h and aim for a max speed 30,500km/h. While this sounds 'all so otherworldly', Sir Branson says that these fast flights may not to be too far away. He wants to achieve his supersonic mission within his lifetime and so is orbiting his way out of space travel and dedicating himself to a new era of maximum momentum.

The Virgin boss had been inspired to start his Virgin Galactic programme after appearing on a children’s television show, Going Live, in 1988. On a live call a young boy had asked the billionaire if he would like to go into space. Sir Branson responded by saying he would love to and, from the innocent interview, the idea of space tourism was born.

As the entrepreneur's celestial programme reaches its final stages, Sir Branson already has a list of people ready to for him to fly them to the moon. Over 700 businessmen and celebrities have signed up all wanting to become the world’s first cosmic tourists.

While many may say Sir Branson has his head in the clouds this new supersonic mission could mean a new era of super travel.

So it seems the world of supersonic travel is about to seriously take off.

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