NASA has found success in its ambitious project to create a supersonic aircraft that does not create a sonic boom.
The preliminary design review of its Quiet Supersonic Transport (QueSST) project indicates that it is possible to realize a supersonic aircraft that does not produce a supersonic booms.
Mankind has desired to fly faster than the speed of sound ever since it learned to fly. Supersonic passenger aircraft have been built since decades, however, there have been certain shortcomings.
One of the most reliable airplane manufactured till now has been Tupolev Tu-144 from Russia.
SSSHHH, Please Maintain Silence
The design of Concorde made it possible to fly at supersonic speed, but it was a very noisy airplane and it accumulated lot of complaints when it was flown over populated areas.
Even when the aircraft was flown slower than the speed of sound, it used to create considerable amount of noise, more than most other aircraft. It used to create lot of disturbance for residents living nearby.
However, the need for faster travel whether it is over water or land has always been there. The need to create a supersonic passenger aircraft that is silent enough never died down.
It is because of this reason that the QueSST program is being run by NASA. The agency is chasing a dream to come out with a technology that can give United States a dominant edge in the aircraft market.
What Will be the Next Step?
According to what has been announced by NASA, senior engineers and experts from the agency and the Lockheed Martin Corporation have come to a conclusion that the QueSST design has the capability to fulfill the mission objectives of LBFD aircraft.
The objectives are:
To create an aircraft that can fly at supersonic speeds
The aircraft only creates a soft sound as compared to the high intensity sonic boom that was created by supersonic planes of the past.
According to Peter Coen, the commercial supersonic technology project manager at NASA, the basic objective behind creating this design was to arrange the waves in such a manner that they don’t collect and turn into a boom. The pressure of these waves rises only gradually and only a quiet sound is produced.
The next step from NASA will be to find organizations that are interested to develop a working model of the Low Boom Flight Demonstration (LBFD). Once the aircraft is made it will be flown over American towns and cities to measure the amount of noise it creates. It is expected that the flight will start by 2021.
What This Silent Supersonic Technology Mean? Watch Video to Understand: