The Aerion AS2 Supersonic Jet is looking to be the first business jet to break the sound barrier. Working with GE Aviation and Lockheed Martin, Aerion is developing a supersonic jet that would be 60 percent faster than the fastest business aircraft and airliners available today. The AS2 would be capable of reaching Mach 1.4, or more than 1,000 miles per hour. That means in a trip across the Atlantic, you would shave off three hours; across the Pacific, more than five hours. The advanced wing design of the jet will also help reduce fuel consumption and increase travel range by cutting aerodynamic drag by around 20 percent.
For over two decades, Aerion has been pushing the envelope for efficient supersonic aircraft. During that time, not only have they worked with GE Aviation and Lockheed Martin, but also with NASA, The European Transonic Wind Tunnel, Sandia National Labs, and other leading aeronautic institutions. Aerion holds dozens of patents for their advances, which include reducing drag with supersonic natural laminar flow.
The AS2 is slated to start flying in 2023, with service beginning in 2025. This jet won’t be a jumbo liner—the cabin will hold only about 12 passengers. Regardless, orders are still coming in with a reported order from Flexjet for 20 AS2s.