Welcome to Up to Speed, a monthly recap of news from Boom Supersonic. This October, Boom spoke with XB-1 test pilot, Tristan ‘Geppetto’ Brandenburg as XB-1 continues preparations for first flight. We explored a sustainable supersonic future in a recent WEF article written by sustainability and regulatory specialist, Dr. Akshay Ashok. We also marked the 20th anniversary of Concorde’s last flight, sharing an interview with Chief Concorde Pilot, Mike Bannister. Lastly, Chris Taylor, VP of Manufacturing, was recognized as a Triad Business Journal 2023 Power Player.
XB-1 Pilot Profile: Tristan ‘Geppetto’ Brandenburg
Earlier this year, XB-1 was moved from Boom’s hangar in Centennial, Colorado to the Mojave Air & Space Port in Mojave, California, continuing preparations for first flight. The aircraft has undergone extensive ground testing since arriving, including medium-speed taxi test events reaching 90 knots (104 mph).
In preparation for flight, Boom’s test pilots, including Tristan ‘Geppetto’ Brandenburg and Chief Test Pilot Bill “Doc” Shoemaker, have completed hundreds of hours in the simulator for aircraft evaluation, operations development, training, and human factors assessments. The test pilots also maintain flight proficiency in a T-38 trainer aircraft, the same aircraft that will be used as a chase plane for all flight tests of XB-1. In August, XB-1 received its experimental airworthiness certificate from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), following a detailed aircraft inspection. Boom has also secured letters of authorization to allow Chief Test Pilot Bill “Doc” Shoemaker and test pilot Tristan “Geppetto” Brandenburg to fly XB-1. We caught up with Geppetto from the Mojave Air & Space Port to learn about what inspired his passion for aviation, his impressive naval background, and a road-less-traveled runway in the Outer Banks of North Carolina that leads to perfect beach days. Read more here.
Ensuring that High-Speed Flight is also Sustainable
As Boom Supersonic develops its flagship airliner, Overture, we are committed to making sure that high-speed travel does not come at the expense of sustainability. At Boom, we are dedicated to making faster travel safe, sustainable, and a net good for society.
A sustainability and regulatory specialist at Boom, Dr. Akshay Ashok, recently contributed an article to the World Economic Forum (WEF) on the intersection of speed and sustainability in the aviation industry. In the WEF article, Dr. Ashok discusses how speed and sustainability can co-exist as governments take a renewed look at supersonic travel and the broader aviation industry commits to curbing environmental impacts. Read the key takeaways from the article here.
20th Anniversary: Supersonic Questions with the Chief Concorde Pilot
Twenty years ago this October, Concorde flew one final time from New York to London. A few months ago, we caught up with a supersonic legend, Chief Concorde Pilot, Mike Bannister. Bannister flew more hours on the aircraft than any other pilot. We heard about his background in aviation, what it’s like to fly supersonic, and his favorite memories flying Concorde. Read the full interview here.
Boom VP of Manufacturing Recognized as 2023 Triad Power Player
In 2022, Boom announced the Piedmont Triad International Airport in North Carolina as the home to the Overture Superfactory, the final assembly line for Overture. One year later in January 2023, construction began on the site.
This month, Chris Taylor, Boom’s VP of Manufacturing, was recognized as a Triad Business Journal 2023 Power Player for his continued work on the Overture Superfactory in Greensboro, North Carolina. With a significant portion of the exterior building constructed, the Overture Superfactory continues to take shape and remains on track for completion in 2024. See the progress that has taken place at the Superfactory on our live blog here.