Courtesy of Lockheed Martin
Talia Avakian
May 17, 2018

NASA is continuing its work to help high-speed supersonic flights make a comeback. 

This November, the agency will start testing the public’s reaction to the sounds of supersonic travel as they gear up to introduce the new Low-Boom Flight Demonstrator (LBFD) aircraft, which promises to transport passengers from New York City to Los Angeles in less than three hours.  

The tests, which will take place in Galveston, Texas, will give NASA a chance to see how the public takes to the noise levels of supersonic flights. 

Researchers will use an F-18 fighter jet to simulate the sounds they expect from the LBFD, launching the aircraft up in the air before it dives 49,000 feet, when it will go supersonic. NASA will then use data from the test flights to develop the noise standards for future flights.

This recent announcement coupled with NASA’s announced last month that the LBFD is now being constructed for completion by 2021 signals the continued move towards making supersonic travel a reality once again. 

Related: Why Transatlantic Flights Keep Getting Faster

The agency plans to complete a series of these community response data tests and deliver the information to the Federal Aviation Administration and the International Civil Aviation Organization so they can develop new rules regarding the sound levels that currently prohibit supersonic flights over land by 2025. 

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