I've just watched a live presentation by NASA of its latest X (experimental) plane, the X-59.
We've had supersonic planes before, of course, anyone remember concord? But the difference between this plane and those that have come before, is it is much quieter, claim NASA. This is due to its very long nose that can disperse the sound waves. Cutting the journey time between New and LA in half is a no-brainer too.
The plane will be shown off later on in the year at the Paris airshow, but unlike other X planes before it, NASA is confident that the tech used in this plane (which was built by the secretive Lockhead Martin's Skunkworks dept), will be used in commercial planes within the next ten years or so.
One of the other innovations of the X-59 is the removal of the front cockpit window, the plane uses high-tech camera technology instead to give the pilot an all round view of the sky. I guess the next step would be the complete removal of all windows.
NASA joked that this is a time travel plane in that if someone takes off from New York, they will reach LA thirty minutes earlier (LA time) than when they took off. Not quite time travel, but still a fun fact.
The plane is going to be flown over various towns and cities in America soon and NASA will judge from the response it gets whether their touted quieter plane is as quiet as they claim, we'll see.
If the tech is proven, NASA reckon that commercial planes using the X-59 tech, will be flying sometime in the 2030s.
Bring it on!