After announcing a commercial agreement with United Airlines in 2021, Boom flew into 2022 at supersonic speeds. As we close out the year, here is a look back that makes us even more excited about what’s to come in 2023.
In January, Boom entered into a three-year strategic partnership with the U.S. Air Force through its innovation arm, AFWERX, and it’s AFVentures division, which is designed to accelerate commercial technologies. Known as the Strategic Funding Increase (STRATFI), the STRATFI contract awarded to Boom is one of the program’s largest investments and a significant commitment to the future of supersonic aviation.
Following a yearlong search, Boom selected the Piedmont Triad International Airport in Greensboro, North Carolina as the site of its new manufacturing facility, the Overture Superfactory. At this state-of-the-art plant, Boom will produce and assemble Overture beginning in 2024.
Boom Supersonic and American Express Launched a Strategic Partnership to Bring Exclusive Experiences to American Express® Card Members
Boom launched a multi-year partnership with American Express designed to give American Express Card Members first-hand access to immersive aviation experiences that showcase Overture. To launch the partnership, American Express Platinum Card® Members had exclusive access to a bespoke experience at the world-famous Farnborough International Airshow in July 2022.
“Making Greensboro a place where the future is being written.” Those were the words of President Joe Biden on April 14th at North Carolina A&T State University. President Biden was in Greensboro, home of the Overture Superfactory, to highlight the state’s economic development achievements. President Biden underscored the importance of U.S.-based manufacturing and innovation, highlighting companies that have recently announced new facilities and job creation in North Carolina.
Boom released its 2021 Environmental Sustainability Report, charting the company’s path toward a sustainable future of travel. The report sets forth the company’s holistic approach to environmental responsibility and commitment to a scalable and sustainable future for travel, defined by two key pillars: climate and community.
Boom announced a 10-year agreement with Climeworks, a leader in carbon dioxide removal through direct air capture (DAC). As part of this agreement, Climeworks will remove a part of Boom’s residual CO₂ emissions from the atmosphere and permanently store it underground.
Boom Founder and Chief Executive Officer Blake Scholl testified before the House Small Business Committee’s Subcommittee on Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Workforce Development during a hearing entitled “Moving Upwards and Onwards: The Workforce and Innovation Needs of the Aviation and Aerospace Industry.”
XB-1 completed one of its more involved tests: the ground vibration test, or GVT. It’s a unique test during which the aircraft is suspended above the ground and “excited” by attaching electrodynamic “shakers” to the aircraft. These shakers are similar to a music speaker, in which a cone pushes air backwards and forwards to create sound waves. In a shaker, this cone is replaced by a simple rod to repeatedly impart a small back-and-forth force onto the aircraft. In the simplest of terms, GVT is completed to ensure the aircraft, once flying, will avoid flutter. Flutter is a dangerous “aeroelastic” phenomenon whereby aircraft structural behavior becomes intertwined with aerodynamics in a way that leads to very large forces that can ultimately lead to structural damage.
At the Farnborough International Airshow, Boom Supersonic announced major milestones on its path to sustainable, supersonic flight:
- The production Overture design was unveiled, representing the culmination of 26 million core-hours of simulated software designs, five wind tunnel tests, and the careful evaluation of 51 full design iterations.
- New and expanded supplier relationships were announced as Collins Aerospace (ice protection), Eaton (fuel and inerting systems), and Safran Landing Systems (landing gear) joined the Overture program.
Northrop Grumman and Boom Supersonic Entered into a Collaboration to Provide Mission Solutions to U.S. Military and Allies
Northrop Grumman Corporation and Boom signed a partnering agreement at the Farnborough International Airshow to offer the U.S. government and allies a special mission variant of Overture that has the potential to support government and military missions that require rapid response. Potential applications for the supersonic aircraft include quick-reaction surveillance, command and control, as well as mobility and logistics missions, such as emergency medical evacuation and troop transport.
In July, Boom announced that it will construct its first full-scale model of Overture in Centennial, a suburb of Denver, Colorado. Overture’s iron bird will be approximately 200 feet long and 100 feet wide. The iron bird is a steel skeleton structure that will identically represent the most critical dimensions of the airplane for the hydraulic systems and electrical wiring.
XB-1 reached another milestone: nose-high testing. The nose of the aircraft is elevated to simulate takeoff and landing. This is another component of ground testing, which is the set of tests that an aircraft must undergo before first flight.
American Airlines and Boom Supersonic announced the airline paid a non-refundable deposit on 20 Overture aircraft, with an option for an additional 40. American, the world’s largest airline, is now positioned to have the world’s largest supersonic fleet.
A rapid scaling of SAF production to fully satisfy demand is possible in the 2035–2040 timeframe by aligning public and private initiatives. To understand how this growth can be achieved, Boom Supersonic’s Dr. Akshay Ashok (Sustainability and Regulatory Specialist) and Ben Murphy (VP, Sustainability) studied patterns across other renewable energy industries and identified key drivers that contributed to exponential growth and ways to apply these catalysts to the SAF industry.
Professor Richard (Ric) Parker, former Rolls-Royce Chief Technology Officer and Chair of Singapore Aerospace Programme, joined Boom as a senior advisor to the company’s leadership. Ric will lend his deep technical, commercial, and sustainability experience as Boom develops the propulsion system for its Overture supersonic airliner.
At Climate Week NYC, Boom signed a SAF offtake agreement with AIR COMPANY, which creates carbon-negative products from CO2. As part of the agreement, Boom will purchase up to 5 million gallons of AIRMADE™ SAF on an annual basis over the duration of the Overture flight test program, advancing the company’s net zero commitments by ensuring net zero carbon Overture flight testing.
Boom selected Advanced Integration Technology (AIT) as the tooling and automation provider and integrator for the Overture final assembly line. This strategic partnership is an important prerequisite for aircraft production at the Overture Superfactory in Greensboro, North Carolina.
To ensure travel remains a net good, sustainability must be integrated into the entire travel journey. This shared sentiment and responsibility drove conversations and actions at the second annual Net Good Summit. Held in Del Mar, California, in October 2022, the event brought 50 diverse industry leaders, influential thinkers, and sustainability experts together with one common goal—accelerate the path toward net zero travel.
Supersonic conviction, interest, and intent at all-time highs, with 87% of target passengers willing to switch airlines to fly supersonic
As Boom’s brand continues to gain awareness, so does passenger conviction that supersonic travel will be a compelling reality for consumers in the not-so-distant future.
This Boom-led collaboration brings together world-class companies: Florida Turbine Technologies (FTT) for engine design, GE Additive for additive technology design consulting, and StandardAero for maintenance.
Boom announced FlightSafety International as Overture’s flight training partner. This partnership for training and simulator development supports Overture operators’ preparation for supersonic passenger flights.