NASA’s new supersonic plane could cut flight times in half

27th Jul 2017
Written by: Dave Owen


We’ve written a lot in the past about new planes that promised to revolutionise air travel and haven’t really panned out, but when it’s coming from NASA we think it’s worth paying attention.

NASA is looking to begin work on a prototype supersonic plane as early as next month, aiming to create an aircraft that could cut travel time between London and New York to less than four hours.

Unlike other prototypical aircraft we’ve written about before, NASA’s craft has clear working precedent in the form of now-defunct Concorde. That could achieve supersonic flight, with a max speed of twice the speed of sound, but the ‘sonic boom’ it produced when breaking the sound barrier (and the noise it made in general) was so obnoxious that severe restrictions were placed on where it could fly – supersonic flight over the USA remains banned today.


NASA’s proposed craft is designed with a modified, sleek shape that will have less impact on the air around it, therefore meaning it will break the sound barrier a little more subtly than Concorde, and be significantly quieter overall.

Reports suggest NASA will work with manufacturers the likes of Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and General Dynamics to develop the prototype.

Still, it’s a little way off – NASA is planning live tests for 2022. 


Care and Community in Cambodia, Summer 2018

from £1370

14 days


Volunteers make a difference in the lives of underprivileged children by dividing their time between running fun educational activities and...

Big One – 26 Days Across Central and East Coast of Canada

from £800

26 days


Experience it all. Great outdoors, national parks, epic citiesm quant towns. Gaspesie, Laurentians, Algonquin, Bay of Fundy, and Cabot Trail....

Guest Services and Ticket Sales Jobs in New Zealand

from £549

182 - 365 days

New Zealand

Accelerate your adrenaline and launch your working holiday in New Zealand. Gap year jobs don’t come much better.

Surf camp in Australia

from £250

2 - 84 days


Begin surfing or improve your existing skills with expert instructors in a small and friendly community south of Sydney. Excellent...

Ghana Volunteering with Gapforce

from £1500

28 - 84 days


Take this vital opportunity to impact your knowledge in helping teach subjects like Maths, English, Science, History and foreign languages...

Sumatra Orangutan Protection with Gapforce

from £2,200

28 days days


This 4 week program in the jungles of Sumatra combines volunteering on our unique Orangutan protection project with an amazing...

Southeast Asia Explorer with Gapforce

from £2200

28 - 56 days

Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam

From Bangkok to Halong Bay on an 8 week adventure!

South America Explore with Gapforce

from £2400

28 - 56 days


A Trek to Machu Picchu, volunteering at our jungle animal sanctuary, learn Spanish and complete important community development work.

South Africa Adventure with Gapforce

from £2200

28 days

South Africa

Your adventure starts in the Mother City – Cape Town then it's on to road trips and conservation reserves! An...

Ski Instructor Training Course with Gapforce

from £8,400

77 days


From Red run to International Level 1 and Level 2 BASI Ski Instructor, our popular 11 week gap year ski...

[contact-form-7 id="4" title="Contact form 1"]