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Supersonic airtravel

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posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 02:08 AM
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With Plans around to build a airlines that can carry up to 600 people nothing wrong with that expect there are no plans for the aircraft to fly at supersonic speeds.
Perhaps one of the reasons the Concord didnt succeed financial was because it didnt have the capacity to carry enough people to make the routes profitable.
I found the concords specs. Click on the link and scroll down.

info

In other words think of a 747 with the same speed as the concord.
Would you rather spend 18hrs or 3hrs in cattle class?
Members of ATS let this thread be a rally call for the return of supersonic air travel.




posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 03:06 AM
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The birth of Concorde and the Boeing 747 both represented a crossroads in civil flying.

One of the criticisms of Concorde was that it was too small. This fails to take into account the aviation scene at the time of its launch but instead places it in the modern perspective of wide body domination.

Concorde was started in 1961 (after a decade of independant study by both countries) and it was designed to provide a Mach 2 replacement for the 707 (itself only three years old and THE standard bearer in civil aviation at the time). High capacity wide bodies hadn't been concieved by anybody at this time so Concorde was indeed very competitive in this context.

When Boeing lost out on the C-X contract to the Lockheed Galaxy they looked at a civil application for their design, they then had the immense courage to launch it as the 747. Civil aviation had to make a choice, did it want speed (which it traditionally had always gone for) or huge capacity and cheap fares? Nobody, not even Boeing, knew which way it would go but history has shown that the 747 won the day while Concorde was marginalised into becoming a rich mans toy.

Nevertheless, the magnitude of the acheivement in producing a 200ft long mach 2 dart which cruised along carrying 100 passengers at speeds faster than most air force jets could manage, and even the ones that could match it could only do so in short bursts, and operate it safely for 30 years (the only fatal crash was caused by outside influence) is something that is truly earth shattering but we take it for granted because we are so familiar with it.

Remember of at least 5 attempts to produce an SST, three of them by big US corporations, Concorde is the only one that made the dream into reality.



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 03:12 AM
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One bit of trivia that is missed is that Juan Trippe of Pan American actually approached Lockheed Martin to build a civilian version of the C-5A, but no one ever called him back and went with the 747 instead. While most of us see Pan Am as a failed company, it was the Microsoft of Airlines in its heyday. What Pan Am did, other followed.

Anyway back on topic: Supersonic travel could be put into place rather quickly, but economics will always play a factor that its hard to replace. You on current technology going to make commercial flight as ceap or cloase enough for the masses to afford over subsonic. Concord was an amazing feat of technology, and the airframes could be made cheaper with todays technology, but the breaking point is can the airline turn a profit.



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 03:20 AM
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Reasons why Supersonic flight is not an option

1. Too expensive. The drag caused by supersonic flight means more money spent on fuel.

2. Aerodynamics. The concorde could fly supersonic because of its shape,and because of that it couldn't carry as many passengers as a Boeing 737.

3. Not effective. Not many people were willing to pay 4 times more just to get there 10 hours earlier.

4. Profit. There again,not many people had the money to ride on Concorde. No passengers=no profit.

However,it would be nice if we could get to New York from London in just 2 hours at the same price as all other jets.



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 05:02 AM
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Thanks for the feed back.
I was crushed when the Concord was withdrawln from service it was my dream to fly across the Altantic in 3 hours.

Couldnt new "fuels" be developed that would give the same result but are cheaper ?
Im sure that the US military would be interested in any such fuel.

If the planes dont carry enough passengers make the planes bigger Im sure the likes of Boeing dont pay there engineers to say it cant be done.

All of the above would require a large captial outlay to start with however the airlines could fly 4 plane loads of people in the time it takes to fly 1 plane load of people now.
Feel free to post your ideas as long as the aircraft is supersonic and carrys enough passengers money to make a profhit.



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 05:46 AM
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just wondering, but does the concorde use afterburners when going mach 2



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 05:57 AM
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Yes it did. The Olympus engine on the Concorde was basically an afterburning variant of the Vulcan's engine, it is also related to the engine of TSR 2, which kind of makes a mockery of those claims that the TSR 2's cancellation was justified because of engine difficulties.



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 06:49 AM
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I saw some History TV program a couple of years ago that talked about Concorde flying at Mach 2, and they said that the US naturally wanted something better (fair enough). The point is, the program said that one of the US airlines had a prototype of an equivalent plane that could fly at Mach 3 but someone very high up in the airline (or maybe the US government) said "no way, it's got to be twice as fast as Concorde , i.e. Mach 4, or we won't do it at all"

Anyone else heard of this ? It just seems remarkable that the US could have had a plane 50% faster than Concorde but didn't bother.



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 06:54 AM
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Originally posted by waynos
Yes it did. The Olympus engine on the Concorde was basically an afterburning variant of the Vulcan's engine, it is also related to the engine of TSR 2, which kind of makes a mockery of those claims that the TSR 2's cancellation was justified because of engine difficulties.


So that was the reason for the high fuel consumption? Could a new engine without afterburner (similar to that one used in F-22) cut down the fuel costs?

I have a question : was a wing with variable geometry considered for comercial plane anytime? The B1 and Tu-160 showed that it is posible to build a large plane with variable geometry wings. How would the variable geometry benefit the fuel consumption? I just thought that an Concorde sized plane with engines able to supercruise and variable geometry would be a great solution for supersonic flights, don't you think?

BTW IMHO the size of Concorde was OK. I don't think there could be 400 people for each flight willing to pay so much . Look at the 747, they are almost never flying full.

[edit on 12-2-2005 by longbow]



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 07:18 AM
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wow i never knew that!!! ty



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 07:20 AM
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Originally posted by JimmyCarterIsSmarter
just wondering, but does the concorde use afterburners when going mach 2


No, it didnt. It used afterburner for two stages of its flight: takeoff and transition to Mach 2 flight. It cruised at Mach 2 without afterburner.

Oh, and Concorde wasnt technically the only successful SST - the Tupolev TU-144 was also a success, but only for domestic airlines (hmmm - so was the Concorde apart from a couple of short term leases) and certain routes.

Its a great pity that the Concorde was removed from service without a replacement even in the works - I consider it a huge step backward in our capability as a human race
How many other things have been removed from our lives without something better replacing them?



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 07:28 AM
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Originally posted by RichardPrice

Oh, and Concorde wasnt technically the only successful SST - the Tupolev TU-144 was also a success, but only for domestic airlines (hmmm - so was the Concorde apart from a couple of short term leases) and certain routes.


I thought Tupolev had large problems (crash???) and the project was cancelled??



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 07:28 AM
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Originally posted by RichardPrice

Originally posted by JimmyCarterIsSmarter
just wondering, but does the concorde use afterburners when going mach 2


No, it didnt. It used afterburner for two stages of its flight: takeoff and transition to Mach 2 flight. It cruised at Mach 2 without afterburner.

Oh, and Concorde wasnt technically the only successful SST - the Tupolev TU-144 was also a success, but only for domestic airlines (hmmm - so was the Concorde apart from a couple of short term leases) and certain routes.

Its a great pity that the Concorde was removed from service without a replacement even in the works - I consider it a huge step backward in our capability as a human race
How many other things have been removed from our lives without something better replacing them?


hehe outdoing the f-22s supercruise ability lol



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 07:32 AM
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Originally posted by longbow

So that was the reason for the high fuel consumption? Could a new engine without afterburner (similar to that one used in F-22) cut down the fuel costs?


Quite possibly - the Concorde was incredibly fuel inefficient, and an engine that could supercruise would have been a godsend. The only problem is tacking a modern engine onto an airframe not designed for it. Theres no electronics for it, the wing mount hard points are custom designed for the Secoma Olympus engines, the airframe would have to withstand different stresses. And theres the cost of developing a supercriuse engine that large.



I have a question : was a wing with variable geometry considered for comercial plane anytime? The B1 and Tu-160 showed that it is posible to build a large plane with variable geometry wings. How would the variable geometry benefit the fuel consumption? I just thought that an Concorde sized plane with engines able to supercruise and variable geometry would be a great solution for supersonic flights, don't you think?


Both the initial UK and France designs for the project they were later to combine on had variable geometry wings but it was deemed far to costly in weight to have the mechanics onboard needed to sweep the wing. Hell, the nose droop system added over 6 tonnes of weight to the aircraft, imagine the weight of the system needed for wings of that size. Also there was the added issue of increased strength in the wings, again adding weight.

The US SST initially had VGW at one point as well.

As a side note, I was watching a programme on the discovery channel a week or so ago, about the Boeing SST. It was quite amusing to hear the design engineer for Boeing say something like 'The nose droop system on the Concorde was a bad design decision as it added tonnes of weight to the aircraft. Boeing wont be making the same mistake as we will be using cameras and electronics to give the pilots a view of the runway at high attitudes.'

I was like 'Uhm, dude the Concorde was designed and built while you were still sucking on your mothers t*tties. There WAS no electronics or cameras capable of such a stunt
'



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 07:41 AM
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Originally posted by RichardPrice
I was like 'Uhm, dude the Concorde was designed and built while you were still sucking on your mothers t*tties. There WAS no electronics or cameras capable of such a stunt
'


You say, there were no cameras and television in the late 60ties/70ties?



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 07:47 AM
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Originally posted by longbow

I thought Tupolev had large problems (crash???) and the project was cancelled??


It did crash at the Paris Air Show 3rd June 1973 (and the controversy surrounding that - I doubt theres anyone who hasnt heard of the crash report coverup agreement between France and the USSR?). The programme was never cancelled because of it, a number of Tu-144s were purchased by Aeroflot and pressed into service for trans USSR flights - and were actually very successful (because they were allowed to go supersonic over populated areas). They were pitched at a price point well below Concorde but no airline outside the USSR purchased them because of fear of economic reprisals from the US.

There was a second Tu-144 crash in June 1978, luckily only a freighter version, and at that point they were withdrawn from service. In total, 13 Tu-144s flew, with 4 fitted for passenger service. But up until its withdrawl from service, the passenger Tu-144s flew more passengers than the Concorde did in the same period.

While the Concorde could sustain supersonic travel without afterburner, the Tu-144 needed reheats during all stages of supersonic flight - costing a lot more in fuel.



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 07:48 AM
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Originally posted by JimmyCarterIsSmarter

hehe outdoing the f-22s supercruise ability lol


Not really, the F/A-22 can go supersonic without reheat, the Concorde cant. To get to Mach 2, Concorde requires reheat but can sustain it without.



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 07:56 AM
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Richard, the Tu-144, while being the record holder for first civil aircraft to fly supersonically and first to pass mach 2, was not a success as it was never deemed truly safe for passenger flights and never achieved regular scheduled services. It was only classed as 'operational' in the passenger role between Nov 1977 and June 1978, less than 12 months in which it made only 55 flights. The rest of the time it carried mail and freight.

Similarly to your seeing that Boeing bod on telly, I remember seeing a US made programme on Discovery Wings which described the Boeing 2707 as 'being totally superior to the Anglo-French Concorde, being capable of mach 3 and carrying 300 passengers".

The fact that Concorde actually existed and was in regular service awhile the 2707 never got off the drawing board seemed totally irrevelvant to the boast


[edit on 12-2-2005 by waynos]



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 08:09 AM
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Originally posted by longbow

You say, there were no cameras and television in the late 60ties/70ties?


Show me a camera build in the 1960s that had the reliability, durability, power and size that would have done the job. There were cameras around, but they were notoriously unreliable (on site television crews carried 2 or 3 spare cameras for each location) - not the sort of thing you want to commit to for a landing, and not many had the definition required to see the runway in less than idea conditions.

In short - no, there werent cameras that could do the job.



posted on Feb, 12 2005 @ 09:52 AM
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Guys,

Be very careful with all the talk about things like you can't do SST with fuel efficiency. Remember todays engine tech is *significantly* more efficient in terms of power to fuel than what was put into Concorde.

Also be *very* careful in saying no one is working on replacements. I know of 3 projects (by way of a little birdie) in research/development for the SST market. 2 of them you can probably guess the manufacturers, the third you would be surprised..

Just don't expect anyone building an SST to go public before they are certain of all the pieces falling into place.

One interesting thing I can talk about due to public knowledge though is if you look at the Boeing Supercruiser (now off the drawing boards), it was designed to fly in or very near the transsonic region. This is the region with the worst drag characteristics, yet Boeing felt they could do that economically. Supersonic flight > M1.2 is actually less 'draggy' than M0.9-M1.2 (granted it's a different 'character' of drag over M1.2 and what works well at M0.8 doesn't at M1.2, but go look at the old photos, and let your mind wander some).

Osiris



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