Congress is considering lifting the ban on supersonic flight over land due to dramatic new developments in ‘quiet’ supersonic flight technology. They are including directives in the FAA re-authorization bills to study the regulation that banned supersonic flight over land and to consider changing it.
“It is important to create bias for action…so we can lead to certification and safe operation over the domestic U.S.,” said Rep. Mark Sanford (R-South Carolina), who sponsored the measure as an amendment to the House FAA reauthorization bill.
Civil supersonic travel over land in the U.S. has been prohibited since March 1973. The Concorde supersonic airliner had to slow to below Mach 1 before making landfall on its transatlantic flights. But years of research surrounding sonic booms and the advancement of technologies are giving rise to questions about what could be done to facilitate supersonic travel.
“It’s vital that we change with the times,” Sanford said. “Over the last 45 years, since there’s been a moratorium on supersonic flight over the domestic U.S., the technology, in fact, has changed. It’s changed dramatically.” – AINonline
Featured Image by NASA