Japan Airlines (JAL) has agreed to collaborate with Boom
Supersonic in developing the first supersonic commercial airliner since the
Under the strategic partnership, JAL has invested $10 million
in the Denver-based startup. JAL also has an option to purchase up to 20 Boom
Boom is targeting 2023 for the launch of a 42- to 50-seat
commercial aircraft that will travel as fast as Mach 2.2, or 1,451 mph, cutting
flight times approximately in half. No airline has flown at supersonic speed
since British Airways and Air France took the Concorde out of service in 2003.
JAL joins the Virgin Group as a confirmed partner of Boom.
Virgin has an option on Boom's first 10 airframes and agreed in 2016 to provide
engineering and manufacturing services, along with flight-test support and
operation, for the venture. Boom also says it has taken a total of 46 additional
aircraft orders from three undisclosed airlines.
Boom CEO Blake Scholl said that his company has been working
with JAL behind the scenes for more than a year. Under the agreement, JAL is
collaborating with Boom to refine aircraft design and to "help define the
passenger experience for supersonic travel," the companies said.