The one-third sized version of Boom Supersonic, the XB-1, will be rolled out in December 2019, about six months later than previously planned.
The actual passenger-carrying Overture will be delayed from 2023 to the mid-2020s. It will have a first flight and a two-year test series with six aircraft.
It will be able to fly from San Francisco-Tokyo in 5h 30m and Tokyo-Hong Kong in 2h.
The Overture will have 55-75 business-class seats, with a crew of six, including two pilots.
Nextbigfuture Believes Supersonic Planes Will Get Leap-frogged by SpaceX Starship
SpaceX Starship will be able to fly at mach 20 in one stage and travel up to 6000 miles. This will be a speed of 18000 mph.
SpaceX Starship should be able to carry 100 passengers.
SpaceX Starship could have manned test flights by 2023.
Elon Musk says adding two to four Raptor Engines to the Starship will let it go sub-orbital for 6000 miles at mach 20. This would mean trips like San Francisco to Shanghai or New York to Berlin. Many world cities are within 6000 miles of each other.
Boeing extended range 767s can reach 6000 miles and the newer 777 and 787 have longer ranges.
If SpaceX can determines ways to save 30% on Starship point to point efficiency then they could get to 8000-mile ranges. This might be possible by lightening landing gear and heat shields. They could need less heat shields for sub-orbital only vehicles.
Going from two stages to one stage will increase the safety of the Starship. Increasing safety by 1000 times is the major hurdle to transporting passengers.
President and COO Gwynne Shotwell, SpaceX could begin offering Earth-to-Earth transport services as early as 2025, if not earlier with Musk’s proposed Starship-only variant. This would start with non-passenger services.
Add 2 to 4 more Raptors for Starship point to point on Earth. You can go surprisingly far, even with low lift/drag. This was an unexpected result.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 30, 2019
Yeah, *way* better. Dramatically improves cost, complexity & ease of operations. Distances of ~10,000 km with decent payload seem achievable at roughly Mach 20.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 30, 2019
My thoughts exactly! Simply moving from 2-stage to SSTO would make point-to-point so much more viable. Probably means Starship could operate much closer to land, compared to a 31-Raptor booster…
— Eric Ralph (@13ericralph31) May 30, 2019
SOURCES- SpaceX, Elon Musk Twitter, Wikipedia, flight Global, Boom Supersonic
Written By Brian Wang, Nextbigfuture
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.
Known for identifying cutting edge technologies, he is currently a Co-Founder of a startup and fundraiser for high potential early-stage companies. He is the Head of Research for Allocations for deep technology investments and an Angel Investor at Space Angels.
A frequent speaker at corporations, he has been a TEDx speaker, a Singularity University speaker and guest at numerous interviews for radio and podcasts. He is open to public speaking and advising engagements.
39 thoughts on “Nextbigfuture Believes SpaceX Starship Will Leapfrog Delayed Supersonic Passenger Jets”
Not many people will be willing to subject themselves to the G forces of rocket. Flying for some is frightening enough.
I wonder how reliable rockets have to be proven, before you won’t have to launch them over uninhabited areas?
The other little thing that many nations don’t like rockets on ballistic trajectories headed their way.
Maybe large storage arrays between super computing centers? Bandwidth of an SOST(suborbital space transport) full of flash memory. LOL Not just organs, also other time sensitive things like medical isotopes, For the paranoid it would be ultra-fast, ultra-secure, and more importantly any failure will result in complete destruction of my package. For example a cargo plan can be intercepted and diverted by hostile fighter jets. An SOST can be shot down by ABMs but not captured.
We can consider the Concorde SST then. It has 97 metric tons of aviation kerosene (the combustible fuel) when fully fueled.
The amount of liquid methane (the combustible fuel) in a fully-fueled Starship is 240 metric tons (just the starship, no super heavy booster, since we are talking single stage suborbital). Definitely not 10x the fuel.
Sorry, to clarify, starship is 1/3 the engines of its booster stage.
The acoustics of a Saturn V at launch was 204dB: https://www.seeker.com/how-loud-are-rocket-launches-1792496122.html
The acoustics of a Falcon 9 at launch is 156 db at 125 feet: https://space.stackexchange.com/questions/24732/is-the-falcon-heavy-as-loud-as-the-space-shuttle-or-saturn-v
Starship with 9 raptors would be 2x the thrust of a Falcon 9 with 9 Merlins, less than Falcon Heavy (3x the thrust of a Falcon 9). Starship single stage suborbital would be less noise than Falcon Heavy, and definitely nowhere near as loud as a Saturn V.
Andrew NotPorC did mention a specific craft.
And he said that future craft with much more advanced features would probably be feasible for a passenger service.
And if I were talking about that specific plane, you may be right.
But Starship isn’t exactly the first, nor last rocket, now is it?
I feel like my country India would benefit the most from a service like this one, because the United States is the world’s most important economy and nation, and India is on the opposite geographic side of the Earth from it. Even China is geographically closer to the US than we are. A point-to-point suborbital rocket flight isn’t useful for traveling nextdoor, like from New York to New Jersey – the larger the travel distance, the more worthwhile and time-saving it is. As you know, India was one of the very first countries to ban Concorde overflights, due to noise complaints. I’m imagining that US-China suborbital flights and US-India could be the most value-added routes in the future.
I guess that depends on how fast the ferry is and how far away the launch site is…
This doesn’t seem all that likely and I can think of lots of reasons why. I’m not even sure this could ever even be a viable mode of transportation.
Waiting for the Gooney bird.
Well it’s still better than the security checks.
If someone in 1915 said
They would have been absolutely correct.
You also have to consider the number of passengers. Boeing 747 can take a multiple more passengers than the starship, right? So the consumption per passenger mile increases to… x10 times?
The distance between the two locations isn’t the only thing you need to know. The velocity boost from the Earth’s rotation along the azimuth of the great circle connecting the cities can either add range (if you’re launching west to east) or reduce it (for east to west). It’s actually a pretty substantial difference.
I believe Musk has mentioned that one of the Starship design requirements is that it be relatively immune to upper-level winds. Wind shear looks like a change in the angle of attack, which in turn generates lift on the vehicle, which creates a bending moment. You can do three things to mitigate the problem:
1) Beef up the structure to handle the bending moment.
2) Put in more gimbal command to get the vehicle back sooner to zero angle of attack.
3) Some combination of the two.
Isn’t what you said basically what was assumed about commercial airflight before it became more common place?
Military equipment and personnel/troops.
Thanks. But you need to include the oxidizer which in weight is about x3 more I think, the capacity of a Jumbo which is also x3 times more and factor the higher fuel consumption of a ramjet engine.
Who would want to sit through the G forces created during launch just to get from A to B?
Depending on the variant, a fully-fueled Boeing 747 has up to 193 metric tons of aviation kerosene fuel.
A fully-fueled Falcon 9 has 155.8 tons of RP-1 kerosene fuel.
A fully-fueled Starship has 240 tons of liquid methane.
So just the fuel (not counting the oxidizer, in the case of the 747 which is atmospheric oxygen, in the rockets it’s liquid oxygen), the carbon fuel mass isn’t that much different between those rockets and a Boeing 747. Definitely nowhere near 10x more fuel.
And the inertia lower gravity pull so there is a very little need of fuel on orbiting. But getting there with a rocket requires maybe x10 more fuel?
There is no way Starship will be used for commercial suborbital flight. Too dangerous, too loud, too inconvenient, too uncomfortable, too expensive. Maybe one day a SSTO spaceplane that takes off and lands horizontally (or with people in a normal seated position and not in flight suits strapped in a reclined position.
Elon has great ideas. This isn’t one of them.
There’s not much wind resistance in space.
Also, they are putting things into orbit with F9/H.
This isn’t orbital. So I would imagine the accuracy has more leeway and you have more fuel for the trip.
Who knows when are they going to be certified as safe enough for passenger flight? I mean they will always be a thrill for the sake of traveling through space and have a nice niche. But air breathing engines will always require less fuel and be cheaper. Weather will limit severely take off and landing windows, they will need to have their own take off and landing infrastructure built separately, and since it is going to be marine, it will take longer to connect locally and reach destinations. Anything above 3 Mach will not make much difference for flight time.
Since Starship in P2P config is powerpoint still, might as well add another powerpoint element: Boring Company tubes to those Starship pads.
Falcon 9 has a very high fineness ratio (very long rocket with a small body diameter), which is why it gets a lot of launch scrubs due to high-altitude wind shear. F9 is pretty much at the limits of fineness ratio for orbital launch vehicles.
Notice how squat and stubby Starship is– by itself, flying Single Stage Sub Orbital, it has a very low fineness ratio. It is nowhere near as sensitive to high-altitude wind shear as Falcon 9 is. Stacked on top of a SuperHeavy booster the fineness ratio increases yes, but it still has a lower fineness ratio than Falcon 9.
Note that Musk is talking about Single Stage Sub Orbital, with just Starship equipped with 8-10 Raptors. This won’t be anywhere near as loud as the original Two-Stage Earth-to-Earth proposal with a full-blown SuperHeavy booster with 31 Raptors.
1/3 the noise. So if they are going to use an offshore launch platform it won’t need to be as far out to sea as a full 31-Raptor SuperHeavy launch.
A ferry makes sense if you’re traveling to space. If you’re traveling trans Atlantic, it pretty much doubles the trip time.
You mean like an off shore launch facility connected by ferry?
There’s still this little problem that rockets are LOUD. Much louder than aircraft taking off or landing. So this suborbital rocket couldn’t launch from current airports, it would need its own dedicated facilities reasonably remote from human living areas.
So, operating sooner? Sure. As feasible? Not likely.
Perhaps Starship will be relatively immune to winds. It has to withstand reentry
from orbit, so it is surely a lot sturdier than F9.
How many times was the last launch scrubbed because of a mid-altitude winds?
Surface to surface with rockets that only takes an hour is worthless if they can’t reasonably guarantee which day the trip will happen.
Oh, I had forgotten that the cost is supposed to be very low. Air mail to
get reliability history. If they won’t, they will keep delivering packages and
Are you teasing me? Why one would need in 1 hour what he can have in a few?
Fedex packages. Amazon deliveries at the right cost per pound.
Is there any kind of cargo that needs to be carried at such speeds? Maybe organs for transplants?
Comments are closed.