Chinese researchers' hypersonic jet will whisk passengers from Beijing to New York in two hours
24 February 2018
Chinese researchers have unveiled a design for a hypersonic jet that they claim would transport passengers from China to New York in a "couple of hours."
The details of the four-winged I-plane are set out in a paper published in the Physics, Mechanics, and Astronomy journal.
The researchers claim, the aircraft called the I-Plane would hit speeds five times that of sound at over 6,000 km/h, slashing the current transportation time from Beijing to New York from more than 13 hours to as little as two.
According to a paper by the researchers led by Cui Kai, "it will take only a couple of hours to travel from Beijing to New York at hypersonic speed.'' The paper was featured this month in Physics, Mechanics and Astronomy, published by Science China Press.
According to the researchers, they recently tested a layered-wings model in a wind tunnel, and found that it was capable of hitting speeds of 8,600 km/h without creating a high amount of oppositional force.
According to commentators, while the concept is still in the design stage, hypersonic travel travel is attracting growing interest for transporting passengers in record time.
Development plans for hypersonic aircraft has also been announced by Lockheed Martin and Boeing.
According to the researchers the biplane design will enable the aircraft to handle significantly heavier payload than existing hypersonic vehicles that have a streamlined shape and delta wings.
They say at very high speeds, the double layer of wings works together to reduce turbulence and drag while increasing the lift capacity of the aircraft.
According to the study, the lift generated by the new hypersonic vehicle is around 25 per cent that of a commercial jet of the same size.
What this means is that an I-plane as big as a Boeing 737 would be able to carry up to five tonnes of cargo, or 50 passengers while a typical Boeing 737 can carry up to 20 tonnes of cargo or about 200 passengers.