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Boeing's X-51 WaveRider Jet Crashes In Mach 6 Attempt

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the unscheduled-water-landing dept.

Transportation 190

An anonymous reader writes "Boeing's experimental hypersonic X-51 WaveRider aircraft crashed today during an attempt to hit Mach 6 while traveling over the Pacific Ocean. The cause of the crash was a faulty control fin, which compromised the test before the Scramjet engine could be lit. A vehicle traveling at Mach 6 (six times the speed of sound) would be able to travel from New York to London in just one hour."

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Who else has these? (0)

synapse7 (1075571) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001307)

So we have somebody to play missle command [missilecommand.com] with.

That's twice (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41001321)

Third time's the charm?

Going nowhere fast... (0)

mholve (1101) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001333)

Or not.

Prediction: (1)

DeTech (2589785) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001337)

Boeing's stock will plummet faster than a X-51 WaveRider aircraft with a faulty control fin.

Re:Prediction: (3, Funny)

DroolTwist (1357725) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001383)

Looks like they found the offinding piece of hardware.

Re:Prediction: (1)

SomePgmr (2021234) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001407)

At best, it's a blip on their radar. I don't think ripples in the market will be very big. ;)

Re:Prediction: (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001515)

It's also experimental. They probably factor the risk of losing a couple into the budget. They got through a couple of X43's as well.

Re:Prediction: (1, Offtopic)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001573)

As was recently said to me:

Here it is, 2012, and we still lack the capability to punch someone over TCP/IP...

Re:Prediction: (0)

SomePgmr (2021234) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001651)

Oh c'mon now, there are so many better reasons to want to punch people over the innerwebs than really bad wordplay.

Re:Prediction: (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41001851)

used to be we wanted to stab people.

http://bash.org/?4281

Re:Prediction: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41001875)

Waverider sleeps with the fishes.

Re:Prediction: (2)

RenderSeven (938535) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001735)

and we still lack the capability to punch someone over TCP/IP...

Of course we can. The USB Missle Launcher [brookstone.com] works over WMS or Skype. It qualifies for a sufficiently loose definition of 'punch'.

Re:Prediction: (1)

Jeng (926980) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001817)

Computers do not have the capability to punch someone, in order to give computers the capability to punch someone you will need an attachment that can punch.

Sending the command over TCP/IP should be easy enough.

The problem is how do you convince someone to install a punching device when the only point of said device is to punch the owner of the device?

Re:Prediction: (1)

Draconmythica (1057150) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002043)

Simple. Just make it a "feature" of Windows 8 :)

Re:Prediction: (1)

ThePeices (635180) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002243)

The problem is how do you convince someone to install a punching device when the only point of said device is to punch the owner of the device?

Easy. Pay them money. LOTS of money.

Re:Prediction: (1)

JDeane (1402533) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002433)

So set up a web cam and a web page where people can pay some money to watch you being punched by a machine attached to the PC or for more money they can actually give the command.... Then have some banner ads to rake in even more money?

I can this happening.

Of course this might lead to some form of competition to who is going to be the first one to let some one kick them in the nuts over the Internet....

Re:Prediction: (1)

slick7 (1703596) | more than 2 years ago | (#41003235)

At best, it's a blip on their radar. I don't think ripples in the market will be very big. ;)

And its too big to fail.

Re:Prediction: (1)

DeTech (2589785) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001445)

This just in, the X-51 closed today down 3,790, metres...

Re:Prediction: (1)

Jeng (926980) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001483)

Prediction:

You will be very wrong.

Worse yet, ... (5, Funny)

PPH (736903) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001403)

...there were no survivors.

Re:Worse yet, ... (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41001535)

If a plane crashes on the US/Canadian border, where do they bury the survivors?

Re:Worse yet, ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41002037)

If a plane crashes on the US/Canadian border, where do they bury the survivors?

Depends on who wants to cover it up. They get to decide. If the US wants to cover it up, they may bury the survivors in some mountain in some desolate part of the US, or decide that Canada has nicer places to bury them - like the sparsely-populated territories in the high arctic area, where it's hundreds of kilometres away from the nearest settlement. (or one of the many islands).

Re:Worse yet, ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41002861)

(you don't bury survivors)

Re:Worse yet, ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41003019)

(you don't bury survivors)

Tell that to Ron Brown.

In Soviet Russia... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41002553)

...survivors bury YOU!

Re:Worse yet, ... (0)

skipkent (1510) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001551)

Tis an unmanned craft, but only the BBC article mentions that fact.

Re:Worse yet, ... (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41001957)

Can you imagine how loud the woooshing would have been had the scramjet enjine been lit?

Oh the humanity.

Re:Worse yet, ... (1)

macbuzz01 (1074795) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002047)

+1 funny

Re:Worse yet, ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41001611)

...said the 8 foot tall figure in the holocaust cloak.

Re:Worse yet, ... (1)

MrSenile (759314) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001853)

We can rebuild him... we have the technology... better... stronger... faster...

Re:Worse yet, ... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41002387)

...there were no survivors.

Hopefully it was just a niger flying it then.

Why not build several, perhaps 3, at the time? (0)

G3ckoG33k (647276) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001471)

Why not build several, perhaps 3, at the time?

I doubt it would make the project three times as expensive.

Re:Why not build several, perhaps 3, at the time? (1)

jt_04 (2687097) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001543)

Why not build several, perhaps 3, at the time?

I doubt it would make the project three times as expensive.

yeah, probably more like 4-5 times more expensive. government-run projects, you know...

Re:Why not build several, perhaps 3, at the time? (4, Informative)

Jeng (926980) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001555)

Four were built, three have been tested, one remains.

Re:Why not build several, perhaps 3, at the time? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41001559)

Because then you have two remaining that are built wrong and who knows the cost of refitting them.

Re:Why not build several, perhaps 3, at the time? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41001587)

Why not build several, perhaps 3, at the time?

I doubt it would make the project three times as expensive.

They actually built 4. The first one flew for 143 seconds at hypersonic speeds, during the 2nd flight the engine shut down prematurely due to airflow disruption, and the 3rd flight is discussed in the linked article that no one is reading. They still have one more, and I am guessing they documented the design somewhere so they could probably build additional vehicles in the future if need be.

Re:Why not build several, perhaps 3, at the time? (4, Funny)

Drathos (1092) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001623)

First rule in government spending: why build one when you can have two at twice the price?

Re:Why not build several, perhaps 3, at the time? (1)

jacknifetoaswan (2618987) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001781)

Development costs are typically the most significant sink when it comes to project development. Building additional craft will be much cheaper, especially as more are built. (Economies of scale)

Re:Why not build several, perhaps 3, at the time? (1)

Drathos (1092) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001927)

Whooooosh!

It's a quote from Contact.

Re:Why not build several, perhaps 3, at the time? (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001925)

How's life in orbit these days?

Re:Why not build several, perhaps 3, at the time? (1)

slew (2918) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002617)

So in this case (of an unmanned plane) all parties decided to forego pilot representation in exchange for the lucrative systems integration sub contract...

"just one hour" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41001491)

"A vehicle traveling at Mach 6 (six times the speed of sound) would be able to travel from New York to London in just one hour."
Except if it crashes.

Re:"just one hour" (4, Insightful)

pixelpusher220 (529617) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001645)

Depends where it crashes.

Re:"just one hour" (1)

rossdee (243626) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001791)

That's the thing - it has to be able to keep going at that speed for an hour.

Re:"just one hour" (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41002415)

One hour flight time. But 2 hours in line to get groped by TSA at JFK and another hour at Heathrow.

What's the hurry? (5, Insightful)

xzvf (924443) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001497)

It takes 2-3 hours to get through security at the airport, and 1-2 hours to get bags and transportation at the other end, plus an hour commute time to the hotel. I'd rather have a big plane with a lay flat bed, and show up the next morning.

Re:What's the hurry? (4, Interesting)

KiloByte (825081) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001605)

And what about individual rooms on a Zeppelin?

Re:What's the hurry? (3)

sjames (1099) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001891)

Personally, I think that would be a great way to travel. Not necessarily a private room, but a nice recliner with leg room, a table and some entertainment would be good.

Re:What's the hurry? (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002767)

And hot-looking female flight attendants in miniskirts would be best for topping it off.

Re:What's the hurry? (3, Funny)

alienzed (732782) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001609)

It doesn't matter anyway, they won't let you through security with the warhead you'd need to make that kind of speed worthwhile.

Re:What's the hurry? (1)

pegasustonans (589396) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001789)

It doesn't matter anyway, they won't let you through security with the warhead you'd need to make that kind of speed worthwhile.

Actually, they will [sfgate.com] . They'll just poke and prod it a bit uncomfortably before letting you through.

Re:What's the hurry? (1)

Shompol (1690084) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001647)

They need to develop a hypersonic TSA machine that comes with it. The new machine will irradiate large batches of passengers with non-lethal doses of alpha, beta and gamma rays simultaneously, and would be able to strip search everyone flying to London in just one hour.

Re:What's the hurry? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41001659)

You already have that option.

You can join the military and ride across the atlantic on transport jets with plenty of space for you to lay prone. Or you can fly commercial, first class, and you'll have a chair capable of laying you out nearly flat.

Re:What's the hurry? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41001711)

No Zepplans though. The wasted time in the airports will never made up. Until time travel becomes the norm..

Re:What's the hurry? (1)

Dahamma (304068) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001821)

The types of people who can afford to fly on a hypersonic jet (ticket prices would make the Concorde look like a value airline) don't wait 2-3 hours with the cattle to get through security or catch a cab.

Re:What's the hurry? (4, Interesting)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002079)

I have family that lives near Fredricksburg, Texas. About 10 times a year (nearly every month!) we drive the 5.5 hours, and then drive home about 5.5 hours. Google Maps says it's only 4.3, but eventually you need to get out and stretch your legs, country stop lights, etc.
 
So finally I graduated and got a real job, announced "this time we're going to fly, since it's only a 40 minute flight from Dallas to San Antonio, and another hour by car! We'll save at least four hours!"
 
Yeah. About that.
 
 

  • Wait for mom to arrive to carpool to airport.
  • Drive time to airport
  • Park at airport
  • Walk to security
  • Go through security
  • Wait at gate for 45 min - 1 hour
  • Board
  • Wait to leave gate
  • Taxi
  • Actual freakin' 40 minute flight
  • Taxi to gate
  • Wait for everyone to unload their overhead luggage and deplane
  • Walk to car rental place
  • Flag down a rental person
  • Wander the parking lot looking for our rental
  • Drive another hour to our destination
  • Finally arrive.

Total transit time: 7 hrs 15 minutes. We've driven the 5.5 hour journey ever since.
 
Now, I fly about 2-3 times a year, but my mother doesn't. Neither do many of the people flying airplanes on any given day. You could speed up the process, be like the guy "up in the air", but that sort of efficiency just isn't realistic for "trip to grandma's with mom".

Re:What's the hurry? (1)

smellsofbikes (890263) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002741)

The usual estimate is that if you can drive it in 5 hours, it's faster to drive than fly commercially. However, if your time is worth a lot -- and you won't save money doing this but you will save time -- you could buy a small airplane and get your pilot certificate. Small airplanes do about 100-120mph in a straight line and there are typically small airports within 20-ish miles of anywhere on both ends, so as long as your relatives are willing to pick you up at the far end you could have more like a 2 1/2 hour each way trip. And the view is great.

Re:What's the hurry? (2)

Martin Blank (154261) | more than 2 years ago | (#41003045)

Those are low speeds for some of the more recently-built craft. An acquaintance bought a plane recently for about $100K which, while limited on features, cruises at about 150 knots and maxes out a little under 180 knots. It's a fun plane to fly, though I can't land it myself since I don't have tail-wheel training. It's also limited on cargo and has only two seats, but since it's just him and his wife, jumping out to Las Vegas or Sacramento (where his parents live) isn't tough to do and doesn't take long.

The Flight Design C4, currently still in development, is targeting 1320 pounds useful load for a four-seater with a capability of 830 pounds of payload with full fuel. Max range is expected to be 1200NM for the avgas version and 1700NM for the diesel version at 65% and 75% power, respectively. The expected price is sharp at $300,000, but if they can pull it off, a lot of clubs are going to be buying it up as it vastly outperforms a C172 for the same price.

Re:What's the hurry? (2)

Zordak (123132) | more than 2 years ago | (#41003169)

but since it's just him and his wife, jumping out to Las Vegas or Sacramento (where his parents live) isn't tough to do.

Man, you have some hard core friends. I'm curious how the plane gets down, though.

Re:What's the hurry? (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002851)

If there's a bunch of you traveling together, you need to try chartering a small plane from a local airport. There's likely a small airport closer to where you live than DFW, there's no TSA security, and there's likely another small airport much close to your destination than San Antonio's, and it doesn't take 4-8 people long to deplane. It's probably too expensive for 1-2 people, but if you've got 4-8, it might be economical, and it'll definitely be very quick.

I don't think we need to go Mach 6 (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41001531)

I don't believe we ever need to go this fast in an airplane (in our atmosphere). There is simply too much risk going this fast for a consumer based vehicle. The hypersonic public transport will never see the public market. - it may make it briefly, but will shut down after the first one disintegrates and they can't even find ashes of the crew and passengers.

I believe the current aircraft are sufficent for our current travel around the globe.
i also believe the future of transportation is in fully automated driving cars/trucks/buses. once this has been mastered, we'll work on fully automated consumer based flying vehicles.

Re:I don't think we need to go Mach 6 (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41001571)

Yeah, 640 mph oughta be enough...

Re:I don't think we need to go Mach 6 (3, Informative)

Jeng (926980) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001579)

Initially this will be for better cruise missiles, only after the technology has matured would they consider it for human transport.

Re:I don't think we need to go Mach 6 (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002817)

Initially this will be for better cruise missiles, only after the technology has matured would they consider it for human transport.

Really? Can we get rides on regular cruise missiles now?

That would be fun. For a while, at least.

Re:I don't think we need to go Mach 6 (2)

Dahamma (304068) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001887)

How do you know what the risks will be after the technology is commercialized? The Concorde only had one crash in its history, and that was on takeoff due to a blown tire and debris hitting the wing under the fuel tanks.

And yeah, I'm sure everyone agrees the future of intercontinental travel is undoubtedly in automated cars...

Re:I don't think we need to go Mach 6 (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002875)

The future of intercontinental travel is in underwater vacuum trains. NY to London in 45 minutes.

Re:I don't think we need to go Mach 6 (1)

lobiusmoop (305328) | more than 2 years ago | (#41003121)

Just for fun, the fictional MiG-31 aircraft from the movie Firefox [wikipedia.org] was capable of Mach 6, the advantage presumably being that it could simply outrun any incoming attack.

How curious... (5, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001561)

It's always a little strange to see the 'New York to London' figure given for something that is fairly clearly intended for blunt-force diplomacy, not passenger travel.

We ditched the Concorde years ago because there weren't enough customers to make flying that fast economic.

Re:How curious... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41001843)

It's always a little strange to see the 'New York to London' figure given for something that is fairly clearly intended for blunt-force diplomacy, not passenger travel.

The summary said nothing about passenger travel.

It could be carrying a warhead.

Seriously, a variety of cameras and instruments for reconnaissance and intelligence gathering would be more useful.

War isn't just about blowing things up.

Re:How curious... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41001857)

we ditched it because of noise regulation. The Concorde made a large sonic boom, newer hypersonic craft make as little as 1 percent of what the Concorde was capable of.

Re:How curious... (3)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002943)

No, we ditched it because of fuel efficiency. SSTs use a ridiculous amount of fuel. The Concorde had no trouble with sonic booms over the Atlantic (no one cares out there), and transatlantic flights are very popular these days (why do you think they have so many 747s that make the trip every day?). But that demand wasn't enough to make up for the insane ticket price caused mostly by all the fuel needed.

Heck, even jet aircraft use a lot of fuel compared to piston-driven aircraft; they only get really economical when they carry lots of people. The only way a supersonic plane would be economical is if it carried a few thousand people somehow.

Re:How curious... (4, Funny)

couchslug (175151) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002093)

"It's always a little strange to see the 'New York to London' figure given for something that is fairly clearly intended for blunt-force diplomacy, not passenger travel."

Lest we forget, US has fought two wars against Britain, which killed thousands more American civilians than any aggressor since.

The only thing keeping the Brits in their box is DETERRENCE!!

Re:How curious... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41002269)

Lest we forget, US has fought two wars against Britain, which killed thousands more American civilians than any aggressor since.

I think you'll find more American civilians were killed by fellow Americans than any aggressor before or since.

The most devastating war on American soil was perpetrated by Americans against themselves.

Re:How curious... (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002489)

Strictly speaking, that conflict was Americans vs. Southerners...

Re:How curious... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41002623)

Strictly speaking, that conflict was Americans vs. Southerners...

There are a few jokes in there somewhere, but coming up with them is bumming me out.

or maybe Kansas to Iran... (1)

Thud457 (234763) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002163)

It's always a little strange to see the 'New York to London' figure given for something that is fairly clearly intended for blunt-force diplomacy, not passenger travel.

Yeah, shouldn't the canonical flight-time be from the Hauge to London?
what, too soon?

we reached that speed in the 1950's! (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41001591)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/X-15

First flew in 1959. Reached Mach of 6.04 at one point. Had a pilot in it, not just a drone.

Re:we reached that speed in the 1950's! (2)

Spy Handler (822350) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001773)

that was done at the edge of space where the air is almost nonexistent. It was basically a spacecraft at that point, not an airplane.

I didn't RTFA but I'm guessing the Waverider is being tested at much lower altitude to study hypersonic dynamics and scramjet efficiency and stuff.

It's not about the speed (5, Informative)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001803)

It's not about flying that fast, it's about operating a supersonic combustion engine to produce positive net thrust. Anyone can stick a rocket on the back of a tube and fly fast, but you have to carry all of your oxidizer with you (or use a monopropellant). With this you just carry the fuel and let the shock transition form the compressor for your jet engine. Of course, it's not quite that simple, since you can't slow down the flow to be subsonic and still achieve + thrust, so you've got to make combustion occur in a flow that's faster than the speed of sound.

Re:It's not about the speed (1)

timeOday (582209) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001871)

Somebody in another forum told me the scramjet engine only has a 2x thrust to weight ratio (much less than any decent rocket engine) so the technology isn't promising. Do you know if there is any theoretical argument on why that could not be improved? Also could a scramjet be used as a more effective "afterburner" stage on some other type of engine for subsonic or merely supersonic (but not hypersonic) aircraft?

Re:It's not about the speed (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41002173)

Scramjets are only efficient to operate aver Mach 3 to 4. They need that level of speed since they get all of their compression from shaping the incoming flow. While the thrust to weight ratio is worse than a rocket but its specific impulse is greater it can fire for much longer than a rocket since it only needs to carry fuel and not oxidizer. The thrust to weight ratio is pretty much fixed by the flow velocity and combustion thermodynamics.

Re:It's not about the speed (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41002287)

I thought another definition of "speed of sound" was the maximum speed a physical disturbance could propagate through a medium. If that's so, how would the combustion process not be blown out the tailpipe? By definition, the fuel and air is passing out the tailpipe faster than the combustion can propagate through the mixture.

Re:It's not about the speed (2)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002609)

And that's what makes it so f*cking difficult, or so I'm told. The last time I heard much about scram was in my senior compressible aero class in the early 90s. Back then, only the Russians had gotten combustion, but it still produced negative thrust and it occurred on the downward arc of a ballistic trajectory that resulted in a very deep core sample of the Siberian tundra.

Yes - typically any flame front in a medium moving faster than the speed of sound within that medium is usually considered a "detonation". I'm honestly not familiar enough with the internals to say what actually occurs or how they make the whole thing viable.

Re:we reached that speed in the 1950's! (3, Informative)

jacknifetoaswan (2618987) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001815)

The X-15 was a rocket-powered aircraft. This is a Scramjet, and it's a technology demonstrator. It's not about the speed, it's about developing the technology to achieve workable Scramjet designs.

travel from New York to London in just one hour (1)

Nutria (679911) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001603)

Why is this obviously Not Gonna Happen concept *constantly* trotted out in regards to hypersonic flight, when writers should be acknowledging that such meaningful (ie, passenger and cargo) flights will never happen.

Re:travel from New York to London in just one hour (5, Insightful)

Baloroth (2370816) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001807)

when writers should be acknowledging that such meaningful (ie, passenger and cargo) flights will never happen.

"Never" encompasses a very long period of time, and should almost never be used in speaking about technology. I'm sure 250 years ago people would have also said it would never be possible to communicate with another person on the other side of the planet in real-time, and yet here we are.

Re:travel from New York to London in just one hour (2)

Nutria (679911) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002543)

Yet scientists/engineers have learned a hell of a lot in 250 years, among them (a) what kind of shapes are required to successfully pass Mach 1, and (b) how much extra energy is required to double from Mach 1 to Mach 2 and then double again to Mach 4.

Bog standard humans have learned at what point the extra speed isn't worth the stupendous extra cost.

This is why civilian aircraft reached their approximate speed peak 55 years ago with the Boeing 707 and has settled around 0.85 Mach 44 years ago with the Boeing 747. Everything else since then has been reducing noise and fuel consumption. Even in airplane size, the 747 was the biggest passenger plane for 35+ years.

Re:travel from New York to London in just one hour (1)

fotbr (855184) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001933)

A warhead could be considered a kind of cargo on a one-way trip, signature not required. Depending on who you're talking to, a scramjet powered cruise missile might be very meaningful.

Re:travel from New York to London in just one hour (1)

Nutria (679911) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002231)

Langley to Paris, but not NYC to London...

1 hour flight (1)

ozduo (2043408) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001657)

but be at the airport 3 hours before departure for screening process and allow for 3 hours of screening at the destination

Good news everyone (2)

DeTech (2589785) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001663)

"While the hypersonic flight test didn't go very well, we're making excellent progress in artificial coral reef dispersion."

why they post the speed in LA-NY terms (3)

ThorGod (456163) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001709)

They include that bit about "from LA to NY in one hour" so that people can grasp how fast the speed is.

It isn't meant to make you conjure up a day where you'll be flying that speed. It isn't meant to sell you on an airline ticket in the future...it's simply a way to communicate speed to a broader audience. Anything you think of beyond the raw speed involved is *you* day dreaming.

Re:why they post the speed in LA-NY terms (1)

ThorGod (456163) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001767)

"New York to London in just one hour"

Woops, got the reference wrong! :P

Re:why they post the speed in LA-NY terms (1)

sconeu (64226) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002377)

Please, that's not canonical units.

How many football fields per fortnight is it?

Re:why they post the speed in LA-NY terms (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41003253)

I think we should to measure the wasted words in this discussion in units of Library of Congress...

Can we stop with the New York to FOO comparisons? (1)

Gothmolly (148874) | more than 2 years ago | (#41001783)

The FLIGHT time is 1 hour, down from 5ish hours. You will still have 2 hours of crap security and airport "stuff" to do on either end. This is not a game changer for intercontinental flight. It's not like there's legions of people screaming "If you can get me there in an hour I'll pay a million dollars!" Concorde failed for a reason.

Fast (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41001969)

So a scramjest gets you to the scene of the accident faster?

That's progress.

Suborbital, anyone? (1)

NalosLayor (958307) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002195)

Am I the only one who doesn't see why suborbital point-to-point isn't a thing? Anywhere on the planet in 90 minutes, and less air resistance on the way.

Heart breaking (1)

Grayhand (2610049) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002449)

Sad that they didn't even get to fire the scramjet. If they are still having this much trouble it may put to bed rumors of a scramjet operating in the 90s. I'd still love a good explanation for the contrails, the cotton balls with a string through ones. They haven't been seen before or since so it was obviously some kind of military test. The most logical still would be a scramjet given the pulse nature of the trails.

Finally a flight with no screaming infants. (3, Funny)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 2 years ago | (#41002601)

At 6x the speed of sound, no-one can hear your baby scream.

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