Tuesday, March 5, 2019


50 years ago supersonic passsenger transport was introduced. I think that created a three hour flight to London or Paris from New York.

I thought for sure this would be the wave of the future, but no, it just didn't take off mainly because of the cost of a flight for passengers and the sonic boom if flown at supersonic speeds over land from east to west or the other way around.

Thus we still have the status quo with jet service that began in the 1950's except designs are more efficient and engines are more quiet.

But comfort is compormised today because tourist, the cattle car, has seats closer together and more narrow for a much fatter, obese, passenger clientele and service, like meals and the like are as gone as the supersonic jet is. SAD!


John Nolan said...

The decision to produce a supersonic airliner was made in the late 1950s on the assumption that a small number of people would want to fly from A to B in the shortest time possible. By the late 1960s it was clear that large number of people wanted to fly from A to B as cheaply as possible.

Commercially speaking, Concorde was obsolete before it left the drawing-board.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

My thought in the 1970's and later is that the technology and design of these aircraft would have been perfected and made affordable for the same flying class we have today. That didn't happen which I find peculiar.

rcg said...

Development of aircraft has a very long lead time and is, therefore, fraught with risks. The combination of engines, aerodynamics, and avionics must be balanced to make the aircraft viable economically or functionally. John is right about the fate of the Concorde, economically and despite advancements in the technology and even efficiencies, the broader economic pressures on airlines makes it very unlikely that another SST will be fielded successfuly.

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

The flying public is fickle - maybe. The Airbus A380 entered service in 2007. However, in February 2019, Airbus announced it will end the A380 production by 2021.

Was Concorde just "ahead of its time," or were there significant issues with the plane itself, the flying public, and the prognostications of the industry that brought about it's demise?

rcg said...

The flying public generally want to get where they want to go with the best combination of safety, economy, and comfort. The routes are scheduled and supported based on the numbers of passengers and cargo demanding the trips. If the Concord could successfully meet those demands we would all fly a Concord to work. It doesn’t for a variety of reasons so other aircraft are chosen. The same goes for the A380.

TJM said...

I was vacationing in Europe with my family in 2000 when the Concorde crashed. We were all anxious as we boarded the plane back to the USA.