Boom Supersonicthe company developing the world’s fastest airliner since Concorde, presented the refined design of its Overture jetliner at the 2022 Farnborough International Airshow. The company also announced a new partnering agreement with Northrop Grumman to develop special mission variants of the aircraft. Collins Aerospace, Eatonand Safran Landing Systems are joining the Overture program, supplying key systems.
Engineers at Collins and Boom will perform aerodynamic analysis to evaluate Overture’s Ice Protection System, the system that prevents the formation of ice on the aircraft during flight. Boom will also work with Collins to assess Air Data System architectures that meet Overture’s field performance and range requirements.
Boom and Eaton are developing the Overture fuel distribution, measurement, and inerting systems. Co-developed between Safran and Boom will be Overture’s landing systems. Technical teams at Safran Landing Systems and Boom will also focus on incorporating the latest technology to improve aircraft safety, optimize weight, and reduce aircraft noise.
Northrop Grumman Corporation and Boom Supersonic will work together to offer the US government and allies a supersonic special-mission aircraft.
“Pairing Northrop Grumman’s airborne defense systems integration expertise with Boom’s state-of-the-art Overture supersonic aircraft makes perfect sense,” said Tom Jones, president of Northrop Grumman Aeronautics Systems. “Together we can ensure military variants of Overture are tailored for missions where advanced system capabilities and speed are critical.”
Together, the two companies will pursue new use cases for Overture to support government and military operations that require rapid response, including quick-reaction surveillance and reconnaissance, command and control, as well as mobility and logistics missions such as emergency medical and troop transport.
The Overture reveal at the Farnborough International Airshow is the culmination of 26 million core-hours of simulated software designs, five wind tunnel tests, and the careful evaluation of 51 full design iterations, resulting in an economically and environmentally sustainable supersonic airliner. Carrying 65 to 80 passengers at twice the speed of today’s airliners and running on 100% sustainable aviation fuel (SAF), Overture will fly Mach 1.7 over water with a range of 4,250nm.
“Overture is revolutionary in its design, and it will fundamentally change how we think about distance,” said Boom Founder and CEO Blake Scholl. “With more than 600 routes across the globe, Overture will make the world millions more accessible for tens of passengers.”
With its updated configuration, Boom combines several engineering innovations in aerodynamics, noise reduction, and overall performance.
Overture will be powered by four wing-mounted engines (being developed by Rolls-Royce) located aft of the cabin to conform to the strictest passenger safety requirements. The airliner will fly without afterburners, meeting the same strict regulatory noise levels as the latest subsonic airplanes. These noise reduction efforts will deliver a quieter experience both for passengers and airport communities.
Overture’s fuselage now follows area-rule design, with a larger diameter toward the front of the aircraft and a smaller diameter toward the rear. Boom has applied this design technique to minimize drag and maximize fuel efficiency at supersonic speeds. The aircraft’s gull wings enhance supersonic performance as well as improve subsonic and transonic handling.
Overture will incorporate carbon composite materials that are lighter, stronger, and more thermally stable than traditional metal construction. Carbon composites can also be manufactured with highly complex curvature, contributing to the aircraft’s aerodynamic efficiency.
The jetliner has been developed from the beginning to be net zero carbon, flying on 100% SAF. Sustainability is emphasized, from design and production to flight and end-of-life recycling.
• Exterior dimensions: Length: 201ft, Wingspan: 106ft, Height: 36ft
• Interior dimensions: 79ft long, up to 6.5ft height at aisle
• Airframe: composite fuselage, wing, vertical, and horizontal surfaces
• Wing: gull with digital leading and trailing edge flap control
• Flight controls: 4x redundant digital fly-by-wire
• Powerplant: 4x medium-bypass 100% SAF-compatible turbofan
• Airport Community noise: ICAO Chapter 14 / FAA Stage 5
Earlier this year, Boom selected the Piedmont Triad area of North Carolina for its first Overture Superfactory and plans to begin production in 2024, start flight tests in 2026, and begin carrying passengers in 2029.