Monday, August 10, 2015

Airbus' supersonic aircraft and Concorde fallacy

Airbus, a famous aircraft manufacturer, is planning to develop a supersonic aircraft that can fly from London to New York in one hour.

The US Patent and Trademark Office approved a patent application from Airbus for a hypersonic jet. Many test flights conducted by the US Air Force and other military organizations have failed to achieve feasible performance in handling a supersonic aircraft so far. If Airbus realizes the new plane, it will be able to carry 20 passengers with Mach 5.

International Business Times: Airbus patents hypersonic jet that can travel from London to New York in just one hour

The US Air Force is expecting that manned supersonic aircraft can be ready by 2023. It will improve the military activity significantly through hasted transportation. However, there have been still several problems in the feasible utilization of supersonic aircraft such as safety matter and highly consumptive fuel.

International Business Times: US Air Force and Pentagon want hypersonic planes that can cross the globe in 4 hours by 2023

Supersonic aircraft itself is no more innovative technology. Concorde, the only supersonic airliner launched to the market so far, was originally developed in 1969. Commercial flights of Concorde were performed from 1976 to 2003. It could fly from London to New York by 3 hours. However, it could not achieve adequate sales due to the high cost and some external factors such as 9.11 terrorism. Finally, British Airways and Elle France decided to abandon Concorde.

The failure in the sense of marketing of Concorde had been promised since its initial process. However, the airline companies hesitated to withdraw its utilization, considering the investment already done. It led to expanding the loss as a result. Persisting with the sunk cost to delay the retreat is named as "Concorde fallacy."

Wikipedia: Sunk costs

If the supersonic aircraft is realized, it will take more than a decade before I can ride the plane that enable me to go to New York in one hour. I cannot wait for it.

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