Tuesday, May 11

Inside US Supersonic Presidential Jet That Could Fly Twice Speed Of Sound

New renderings show the cabin interior of the supersonic presidential jet designed by Exosonic that could fly at nearly twice the speed of sound and cut travel time in half.

Last year, it was revealed that the Pentagon had commissioned a prototype of a jet that could carry a variety of senior members of the executive branch – from cabinet officials to the First Lady.

The Air Force awarded a 24-month, $1million contract to Exosonic after it was impressed by the start-up aerospace company’s concept for a jet that could fly at Mach 1.8 speeds ‘supersonically overland and overwater with a muted sonic boom,’ according to the firm’s website.

The presidential plane is a 31-passenger version of the company’s concept for a 70-passenger commercial jet and could theoretically reach speeds of 1,380mph.

Stephanie Chahan, Exosonic’s principal aircraft interior designer, said one of its key interior design strengths is its cabin flexibility to host a variety of different passengers – unlike Air Force One, the president’s plane.

‘It needs to be flexible enough to fit a number of different missions, if it was ever in service,’ Chahan told DailyMail.com.

‘So it has to be modular enough for the Secretary of Defense, fit the requirements of the First Lady – whatever their requirements may be – and those requirements can vary significantly.’

CNN Travel noted that the plane might primarily be used as Air Force Two – which carries the vice president.

The jet boasts two private suites and luxurious furnishings and materials including quartz counters, and flooring near its exits, as well as a wool-silk blend carpet – materials that ‘are often not seen in business jets,’ Chahan said.

The custom carpets come from American manufacturer Scott Group Studio based out of Michigan, which has previously manufactured rugs in the White House Oval Office for President Joe Biden as well as former Presidents Donald Trump and Barack Obama.

The first of the business suites fits three passengers and includes the ability to video teleconference securely in-flight.

A second suite for senior staffers and guests fits eight passengers who can work collaboratively and rest. It has seats that lie flat to allow passengers to sleep on board.

The plane also has 20 business class passenger seats, with two galleys and two bathrooms.

‘With this concept we are planning to implement new technologies that are not available today or that you don’t (yet) see on commercial or business aircraft,’ Chahan told CNN Travel.

It was not immediately clear what those new technologies may include.

Chahan told DailyMail.com that the cabin design and its blue-and-white coloring was inspired by the executive branch and the Peregrine Falcon – a bird renowned for its speed – making the cabin ‘neutral and calming.’

The plane, which has a 5,000-nautical-mile range, is expected to fly by the mid-2030s.

Air Force One, the highly customized Boeing 747-200B series aircraft described as a three-level ‘flying Oval Office,’ is currently one of the fastest planes in the world. It can travel at a top speed of 600mph, which is almost the speed of sound.

During flight, Air Force One is capable of reaching a maximum altitude of 45,100 ft.

By comparison, a commercial airliner usually reaches about 30,000ft.

It is built to support the weight of up to 70 passengers as well as living quarters for the president, his senior advisers, Secret Service officers, reporters, and guests.

The current version of the plane also holds 4,000sq ft of space which includes a conference room, offices, and top-of-the-line electronics that enables the president to work in-flight.

Air Force One also holds two galleys for food preparation, a doctor on board every flight, and a medical operating room.

There are currently two Air Force One planes in service today. The aircraft carries the tail codes 28000 and 29000.

The current planes were purchased when Ronald Reagan was president. They were first introduced into service during the administration of Reagan’s successor, George H.W. Bush.

Several years ago, Boeing decided to shut down production of the 747-200 series. Thus it became difficult to replace the aircraft’s parts.

During Barack Obama’s second term in office, he ordered a replacement fleet be built that would be modeled on the new 747-8 series.

In July 2018, Boeing received a $3.9billion contract to build two 747-8 aircraft for use as Air Force One by the president, due to be delivered by December 2024 and painted red, white and blue.

The Boeing 747-8s are designed to be an airborne White House able to fly in worst-case security scenarios, such as nuclear war, and are modified with military avionics, advanced communications and a self-defense system.

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