Lockheed Martin starts construction of silent supersonic aircraft

Nov

20

2018

for NASA
The American aircraft manufacturer and weapon manufacturer Lockheed Martin has started the construction of the X-59. This is an experimental aircraft that is built for tests with supersonic flying, without the usual noisy shock waves.

Lockheed Martin reports that it has started making the first part of the X-59 Quiet Supersonic Technology, or the X-59 QueSST. According to the company, this is a major leap forward that contributes to a future in which passenger air travel reaches supersonic speeds, without being associated with supersonic shock waves. These arise when the sound barrier is broken. The shock wave that arises is experienced by people on the ground as a very loud bang.

The start of construction is linked to a recent approval from NASA , which continues to finance the project. According to Jim Bridenstine, the highest driver of the American space agency, the X-59 has the potential to completely change passenger aviation, because it will be possible to fly faster than the sound over land. The first test flight of the aircraft is expected in 2021.

The X-59 is a slim device and has a remarkably elongated, pointed nose. The design of the aircraft contributes to limiting the supersonic shock wave. Perhaps the plane can limit the noise of the shockwaves to such a degree that it is not audible to people on the ground at all. Because these sonic booms can normally be very loud, the Concorde, which was put out of service in 2003, was only allowed to pass through the sound barrier above the ocean.

Lockheed Martin X-59

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