ENGLEWOOD, Colorado — Aviation industry leaders attending the 23rd annual Boyd Group International Aviation Forecast Summit got a glimpse of the future Saturday: Boom Supersonic presented a model of a test aircraft expected to lead to the return of speedy intercontinental travel.
And the head of the Colorado-based Boyd Group, aviation expert Mike Boyd, believes the plane could be game-changing for Las Vegas.
“A big chunk of them (Las Vegas visitors) are coming in to spend a lot of money,” Boyd said. “Do you think MGM Grand or Wynn wouldn’t want to charter an airplane like this for their high-rollers? In a New York second.”
Blake Scholl, who designed the aircraft and founded Boom in September 2014, said his airliner would be able to fly from Washington D.C. to London in 3½ hours instead of the more than seven hours it currently takes. San Francisco to Hawaii would take 2½ hours instead of five. Sydney, Australia, to Los Angeles could be completed in just under seven hours instead of just under 15.
Scholl’s whole premise for the 55-passenger airliner he hopes to get off the ground by 2025 is “removing the barriers to experiencing the planet” by transporting people in half the time it currently takes.
At a hangar at Centennial Airport in suburban Denver, early arrivals for the two-day Boyd conference saw a model of the XB-1, the first independently developed supersonic jet — and history’s fastest civil aircraft.
The XB-1 and Boom’s airliner will be flown at Mach 2.2 — 1,451 mph. With an all-business-class cabin and every seat with a large window and next to the center aisle
Scholl said the XB-1, known by company employees as “Baby Boom,” is a two-seat test vehicle that will enable the company to refine its airliner design, ensuring a passenger aircraft which is efficient, reliable and safe.
Parts of the aircraft are being manufactured with lightweight carbon composites in San Diego and transported to Denver for assembly in Boom’s hangar at Centennial Airport.