The US carrier’s order is the largest to date for the high speed jet
United Airlines today signed a deal with Denver-based start-up Boom Supersonic to acquire up to 50 of its Overture supersonic airliners.
Under the terms of the agreement, the carrier will purchase 15 examples and once safety, operating and sustainability requirements are met, an option for an additional 35 aircraft could be exercised.
The ground-breaking deal also covers a cooperative arrangement between the two companies which will see them work together on meeting these requirements before delivery. Once operational, Overture is expected to be the first large commercial aircraft to be net-zero carbon from day one, optimised to run on 100% sustainable aviation fuel (SAF).
Slated for a roll out in 2025, the airliner is expected to fly the following year and could carry passengers by 2029.
“United continues on its trajectory to build a more innovative, sustainable airline and today’s advancements in technology are making it more viable for that to include supersonic planes. Boom’s vision for the future of commercial aviation, combined with the industry’s most robust route network in the world, will give business and leisure travellers access to a stellar flight experience,” says Scott Kirby, United CEO. “Our mission has always been about connecting people and now working with Boom, we’ll be able to do that on an even greater scale.”
Capable of flying at speeds of Mach 1.7 – twice the speed of today’s fastest airliners – Overture will be able to connect more than 500 destinations in nearly half the time, according to the company.
Among the many potential routes for United are Newark to London in just three and a half hours, Newark to Frankfurt in four hours and San Francisco to Tokyo in just six hours.
“The world’s first purchase agreement for net-zero carbon supersonic aircraft marks a significant step toward our mission to create a more accessible world,” says Blake Scholl, Boom Supersonic founder and CEO. “United and Boom share a common purpose—to unite the world safely and sustainably. At speeds twice as fast, United passengers will experience all the advantages of life lived in person, from deeper, more productive business relationships to longer, more relaxing vacations to far-off destinations.”
Overture’s order book, including purchases and options, stands at 70 aircraft, and Boom is working with the United States Air Force for government applications of the jet.