Boom’s supersonic jet could one day fly the president of the United States

Sep 9, 2020

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The U.S. Air Force has already locked in plans for a pair of Boeing 747-8s, intended to fly a future President of the United States. It’s an expensive project, as you might expect — the manuals alone come with an $84 million price tag — and those two Boeings likely won’t be the only members of the president’s fleet.

While the president most often travels onboard a Boeing VC-25, a highly modified 747-200, shorter journeys may take place on a Boeing C-32, based on the 757-200 passenger jet. And, if Boom Supersonic gets its way, the company’s Overture jet could also make its way to the fleet, flying the country’s top leaders at Mach 2.2.

It’s still early days for a potential Boom Air Force plane. This week, the company landed an Air Force contract, intended to help fund “explorations” of a special version of the Overture supersonic plane. The Air Force has also issued contracts with other companies to research a supersonic government passenger jet, including California-based Exosonic.

Boom’s big advantage is its speed. While Overture’s cabin is far smaller than that of the Boeing 747-8, the plane can cruise at 1,688 miles-per-hour, compared with 660 for the Boeing jumbo jet — a flight from the East Coast to Europe could take just over three hours, compared with more than six hours onboard the larger Boeing plane.

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“The United States Air Force is constantly looking for technological opportunities to disrupt the balance of our adversaries,” Brigadier General Ryan Britton, Program Executive Officer for Presidential & Executive Airlift Directorate said in Boom’s press release. “We are extremely excited to team with them as we work to shrink the world and transform the future of executive airlift.”

TPG reached out to the U.S. Air Force for more details on its Boom-powered aircraft program. We’ll update this post if we receive a response.

Featured photo courtesy of Boom Supersonic.

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