Boeing has entered a partnership with Aerion to accelerate the development of the AS2 supersonic business jet. With the help of Boeing’s engineering, manufacturing and flight test resources, as well as “strategic vertical content”, the AS2 is expected to make its first flight in 2023.
The AS2 is designed to fly at speeds up to Mach 1.4 or approximately 1,000mph, shaving around three hours off a transatlantic flight while meeting environmental performance requirements.
“Boeing is leading a mobility transformation that will safely and efficiently connect the world faster than ever before,” said Steve Nordlund, vice president and general manager of Boeing NeXt.
“This is a strategic and disciplined leading-edge investment in further maturing supersonic technology. Through this partnership that combines Aerion’s supersonic expertise with Boeing’s global industrial scale and commercial aviation experience, we have the right team to build the future of sustainable supersonic flight.”
Founded in 2003 to develop new, more efficient aerodynamic technologies for supersonic aircraft, Aerion introduced its AS2 12-passenger business jet design in 2014. The company unveiled the AS2’s GE Affinity engine design in 2018.
“Aerion is the industry leader mapping out a successful, sustainable return to supersonic flight,” said Tom Vice, chairman, president and CEO at Aerion. “The AS2 is the launch point for the future of regulatory-compliant and efficient supersonic flight. Together with Boeing, we’re creating a faster, more connected future with tremendous possibilities for enhancing humanity’s productivity and potential.”
Boeing NeXt works with industry partners and regulatory agencies to lead the responsible introduction of a new mobility ecosystem. The division’s portfolio includes prototyping activities and programs designed to shape the future of urban, regional and global mobility. These programs include autonomous air vehicles and passenger-carrying hypersonic aircraft.