Japan Airlines invests $10 million in supersonic jet company Boom

JAL invests $10 mln in Boom for supersonic jet project

San Francisco to Tokyo in under 6 hours? Japan Airlines bets on supersonic

The payoff for the investment is likely years away when Boom doesn't expect the first aircraft to enter service until 2023.

Japan Airlines yesterday announced that it will invest $10m in the Denver based firm as well as ordering up to 20 aircraft. Japan Airlines will also lend its knowledge and experience to help Boom develop its supersonic passenger aircraft, which could fly at a speed of Mach 2.2 (1,451 mph) and cut worldwide travel times in half as soon as 2023.

Denver-based Boom is developing a 55-seat passenger plane, created to fly at Mach 2.2, over twice the speed of sound, and slightly faster than the only previous supersonic airliner to enter widespread commercial service, Concorde.

Boom founder and chief executive Blake Scholl said the strategic partnership with Japan Airlines came after a year working together behind the scenes. "Through this partnership, we hope to contribute to the future of supersonic travel with the intent of providing more time to our valued passengers while emphasizing flight safety".

Scholl said Boom has been working with JAL since a year ago.

"Think about for a moment the families that are separated because of the long flights". The XB-1, "baby boom" as it is nicknamed, will apparently be faster, quieter and more profitable than Concorde ever was.

If Boom does succeed with its new generation of superfast planes, it will be the first... JAL and rival All Nippon Airways, were among the first to purchase Boeing's 787 Dreamliner back in 2004, a major boost to the program.

As part of the deal Japan Airlines, which has the option to purchase up to 20 Boom aircraft, will provide its knowledge and experience as an airline to hone the aircraft design and help define the passenger experience for supersonic travel, the companies said on Tuesday.

Boom claims to have cracked the supersonic code, planning an initial list price of $200m per aircraft, with orders envisaged at 1,000 by 2035. Today, a conventional subsonic aircraft does the journey in just over 11 hours. A flight from Tokyo to Hong Kong could be cut from roughly five hours to around two hours, offering airlines a supersonic shuttle between two of the world's biggest financial centers.

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