Aerion Supersonic is still on track to its first supersonic flight in 2023. Complete certification is targeted for 2025.
Supersonic business jet developer Aerion has launched preliminary design of its 12-seater, Mach 1.4-capable AS2 and revealed ambitions to develop bigger and faster follow-on variants, including potential commercial models.
Aerion is partnered with Lockheed Martin, General Electric and Honeywell.
The AS2 is the first step on a roadmap to making supersonic travel efficient, sustainable, and widely available. Today we are at the limits of available technology.
There will be a follow-up adaption of the current technology to reach Mach 1.6. Th Mach 1.6 version will have larger cabin, longer-range business jet and small airliner. Entirely new engine designs hold the potential for larger aircraft able to fly at Mach 1.8 and above.
GE Aviation making a new supersonic engine for business jets
Aerion Corporation and GE Aviation announced that it has completed the initial design of the first supersonic engine purpose-built for business jets. This new engine class, revealed today as GE’s AffinityTM turbofan, is optimized with proven GE technology for supersonic flight and timed to meet the Aerion AS2 launch.
The Affinity is a new class of medium bypass ratio engines that provide exceptional and balanced performance across supersonic and subsonic flights. The Affinity integrates a unique blend of proven military supersonic experience, commercial reliability and the most advanced business jet engine technologies.
GE’s Affinity is a twin-shaft, twin-fan turbofan controlled by a next-generation Full Authority Digital Engine Control (FADEC) for enhanced dispatch reliability and onboard diagnostics. It is purposefully designed to enable efficient supersonic flight over water and efficient subsonic flight over land, without requiring modifications to existing compliance regulations. The engine is designed to meet stringent Stage 5 subsonic noise requirements and beat current emissions standards.
GE’s Affinity features:
• Efficient performance throughout the full flight envelope with a high-altitude service ceiling of 60,000.
• An advanced twin-fan with the highest bypass ratio of any supersonic engine.
• A special, non-augmented supersonic exhaust system.
• A proven engine core adapted from GE’s commercial airline portfolio with billions of successful and reliable hours of operational service.
• A durable combustor with advanced coatings for sustained high-speed operation.
• Advanced acoustic technology designed to meet or exceed regulatory requirements.
• GE’s additive design & manufacturing technologies to optimize weight & performance.
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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