NASA is preparing a replacement for Concord and Tu-144


At the end of December 2019, the American media appeared news that the assembly of the experimental X-59 QueSST aircraft will be completed before the end of 2020, and already in 2021 the first flight of a unique aircraft can take place. The uniqueness of the project lies in the fact that the X-59 QueSST aircraft will be able to switch to the “silent” mode of supersonic flight. According to the developers of the company Skunk Works (Lockheed Martin division), the noise level when breaking the sound barrier will not exceed the sound of the car door being closed.


X-59 QueSST project by NASA and Lockheed Martin


В stories world aviation there were only two serial supersonic passenger aircraft. This is the Soviet liner Tu-144 and the English-French Concorde. After the operation of the latter was completed in 2003, all passenger aircraft in the world are represented only by subsonic airliners. It seems that very soon the situation may change. 17 years after the completion of the Concord’s operation, the topic of supersonic passenger flights again becomes relevant. And in the US, NASA is ready to invest hundreds of millions of dollars in projects designed to improve the capabilities of such aircraft.

Work on the project of a new aircraft, designated X-59 QueSST (Quiet Supersonic Transport), started in 2016. The aircraft is being developed as part of a collaboration between the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and Lockheed Martin Corporation. Important clarification: X-59 QueSST is not a prototype of a passenger aircraft, it will never carry passengers in the future. This is an experimental aircraft, a technology demonstrator, which is being created as part of a specific task to reduce the noise level of supersonic aircraft.


Currently, the United States has restrictions on the flight of supersonic aircraft over populated areas, primarily because of the high noise level. The new aircraft should solve this problem and contribute to the revision of the established rules, giving such passenger liners a second chance.

As it became known at the end of December 2019, the project for the creation of the X-59 QueSST aircraft reached the finish line. It is planned to complete the assembly of the machine before the end of 2020, and the first flight of the experimental aircraft may take place in 2021. In this case, in the future, the experimental aircraft will specifically fly over populated areas. During such flights, noise data will be taken from the ground, as well as surveys of local residents will be conducted to find out their reaction to sound shock and the noise level published by the X-59. The first tests are planned in the Mojave Desert in California, where a whole network of sensitive microphones with a length of almost 50 kilometers will be installed on the ground.

It is known that the assembly of the aircraft is carried out at the Skunk Works company in Palmdale, California. The total cost of the project is open and amounts to 247.500.000 dollars. NASA emphasizes the fact that the X-59 QueSST is the company's first manned pilot aircraft (X-plane) in three decades.

NASA is preparing a replacement for Concord and Tu-144
Assembling the X-59 QueSST

Features of the aircraft X-59 QueSST


Assembly of the X-59 QueSST aircraft is already underway and should be completed before the end of 2020. At this point, the plant in Palmdale plans to complete the assembly of the fuselage, wing, plumage and integration of all major systems, including an innovative surveillance system from the cockpit. An unusual system is necessary, since the aircraft received a very elongated and pointed nose cone, which seriously limits the pilot's ability to view forward. To solve this problem, a camera with a resolution of 4K and a viewing angle of 33 by 19 degrees will be installed in the nose of the aircraft.

Not much is known about the technical characteristics of the experimental aircraft. The maximum flight speed will be 1510 km / h. The task of setting records for the developers is not, and to achieve their goals, such a speed is more than enough. In this case, the aircraft will be able to fly at an altitude of about 17 thousand meters. It is known that a General Electric F414-GE-100 turbojet bypass engine (thrust of 98 kN) will be installed on an experimental aircraft. The crew of the aircraft will consist of one person.

The maximum take-off weight of the X-59 QueSST is approximately 14 kg. The maximum length of the aircraft is more than 700 meters, the wingspan is just over 29 meters, and the maximum height is approximately 9 meters. The aircraft will use a three-post retractable landing gear, which was borrowed from the F-4,3 fighter. Elements of the cockpit taken from a Northrop T-16 Talon supersonic training aircraft.


According to the assurances of the developers, the sound of an experimental aircraft passing the sound barrier when switching to supersonic flight speed and the flight itself at supersonic speed will be much quieter than that of existing aircraft. For a listener on the ground, the sound will be reminiscent of the usual clap of a car door being closed, not a peal of thunder. Various sources indicate that the noise level will be from 60 to 75 dB. This is an order of magnitude smaller than that of all modern supersonic airplanes, which upon transition to supersonic provoke a real "sonic boom", the waves of which reach the earth's surface. In the future, Americans plan to use the proven technologies in civil aviation to create new supersonic airliners that will help to revise the rule on the prohibition of flights of supersonic aircraft over populated areas.

To achieve a quiet supersonic flight, designers use a specially designed aircraft design. The aircraft visually highlights the long narrow fuselage and the used duck aerodynamic design. All this should help reduce noise. In addition, Skunk Works engineers paid a lot of attention to the wing geometry of the aircraft and install special noise filters around the engine.

The experimental X-59 QueSST is developed by the creators of U-2 and SR-71 Blackbird


Skunk Works is responsible for the development of the X-59 QueSST pilot aircraft. It is noteworthy that this division of Lockheed Martin Corporation for many years specializes in secret developments in the interests of the US Air Force. It was the specialists of this company who were developing the two most famous American reconnaissance aircraft in the history of aviation - Lockheed U-2 and SR-71 Blackbird. The same company had a hand in the creation of the fifth-generation American fighter F-22 Raptor and F-35 Lightning II.


From the very beginning of its existence, Skunk Works, formerly known as the Lockheed's Advanced Development Project division, has positioned itself as a division of promising developments. This does not deny the claimed civil and commercial component of the new project. But some doubt creeps in. The X-59 QueSST experimental aircraft may be a dual-use product; some of the tested technologies may later migrate to military aviation.

It cannot be argued that the technologies tested in the framework of this project will not be used in the future to create modern high-altitude reconnaissance aircraft or combat aircraft. True, and with absolute certainty, talking about this also does not make much sense yet. There is simply no official evidence for this.

At the same time, in Russia the idea of ​​creating a modern supersonic passenger aircraft is also in use, however, only at the level of conversation. Earlier, in January 2018 and February 2019, the topic of creating a supersonic passenger liner was raised by Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Author:
Photos used:
nasa.gov lockheedmartin.com
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  1. Vasily Ponomarev 20 February 2020 18: 11 New
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    but the problem of supersonic was still that the engines consume too much fuel, it was inefficient for operators to use them
    1. Lamata 20 February 2020 18: 25 New
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      Yes, it was not profitable both with us and with them. But they had a price, and we also had the Minister of Civil Aviation Bugaev strongly against the Tu 144.
      1. Aerodrome 20 February 2020 18: 30 New
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        I don’t understand this “noiselessness” very much, but when you can smack from your territory .. Israel isn’t soaring ... now it seems that the main thing is the “range” and “finesse” of the missiles.
        1. figwam 20 February 2020 18: 46 New
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          Quote: Aerodrome
          not very understand this "noiselessness

          Article about a civilian aircraft.
          1. Aerodrome 20 February 2020 18: 50 New
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            Quote: figvam
            Quote: Aerodrome
            not very understand this "noiselessness

            Article about a civilian aircraft.

            you know that these do not happen. wink
            1. figwam 20 February 2020 18: 55 New
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              Quote: Aerodrome
              you know that these do not happen

              Why, there will be a civilian plane for rich people, which overcomes the sound barrier without crashing, and on its basis there will be some kind of supersonic reconnaissance, inconspicuous for radars.
              1. Aerodrome 20 February 2020 19: 02 New
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                Quote: figvam
                but already based on it

                here you go....
                1. figwam 20 February 2020 19: 12 New
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                  Quote: Aerodrome
                  here you go....

                  This is yes, without it in any way.
            2. Grigory_45 24 February 2020 18: 39 New
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              Quote: Aerodrome
              Article about a civilian aircraft.

              you know that these do not happen.

              Yeah, Tu-144 and Concord were camouflaged missile carriers, and Boeing 747 and Il-86 were camouflaged strategic bombers)))

              It is another matter that civilian sides are sometimes called up for service - tankers, RTR and AWACS aircraft, etc., make them. But initially, those cars were purely civilian, designed as civilian ones.
          2. mat-vey 21 February 2020 06: 09 New
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            From the article - “An important clarification: X-59 QueSST is not a prototype of a passenger aircraft, it will never carry passengers in the future. It is an experimental aircraft, a technology demonstrator, which is being created as part of a specific task to reduce the noise level of supersonic aviation."
        2. fider 18 May 2020 15: 40 New
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          Airfield (Airfield)

          "I don’t understand this" noiselessness "not when you can smack from your territory .. Israel isn’t soaring ... now it’s the main thing that the" range "and" finesse "of the missiles are."

          Horses mixed in a bunch, people ... tongue
    2. Bad_gr 1 March 2020 14: 30 New
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      .... The plane visually highlights the long narrow fuselage and the used duck aerodynamic design ......

      The “duck” scheme is when instead of the rear horizontal plumage, the front one is present. The same aircraft has both front and rear, that is, a “triplane” scheme, like our Su-34

      .
  2. Sergst 20 February 2020 18: 14 New
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    It’s time for journalists to find out that “popping” does not occur at the moment of transition to supersonic sound, but constantly when moving at supersonic speed.
  3. alipes 20 February 2020 18: 25 New
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    Author, read the school physics course, where it talks about the movement of the sound source. How tired are the illiterate writers in elementary matters.
  4. The comment was deleted.
  5. knn54 20 February 2020 18: 37 New
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    I don’t know if the long nose will help, but the front view makes it very difficult.
  6. Whalebone 20 February 2020 18: 39 New
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    Passenger supersonic is economically inefficient. The cost of tickets for Concord was very high, while the operation still brought losses and subsidized. Yes, you can build a supersonic business jet for those who don’t count money, and they’ll probably do it soon. With engines from F-18, for example. And the analogue of the B-787 at supersonic will cost as much as the B-777 or even more expensive. Who will fly twice as fast, but 7-10 times more expensive?
  7. Vasily Ponomarev 20 February 2020 18: 42 New
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    [/ Center]
    Quote: knn54
    I don’t know if the long nose will help, but the front view makes it very difficult.

    it doesn’t make it very difficult, but generally closes it, in order to see they came up with a way to look at a 4k monitor that displays a picture from cameras

    here is the google translation of the article "NASA Pilot X-59 Quiet SuperSonic Technology or QueSST Aircraft will move through the sky in the cockpit unlike others. There will be no front window. That's right; in fact it is a 4K monitor that serves as the center window and allows the pilot to safely to see the movement on the flight path of its flight, and also provides additional visual aids for landing approaches at airports, landings and take-offs.The 4K monitor, which is part of the aircraft’s external visibility system, or XVS, displays stitched images from two cameras outside of itself ETA, combined with data on the area of ​​advanced computing systems, however, two portals and a traditional canopy -.. real windows that help the pilot to see the horizon under XVS displays will provide a variety of data about the aircraft and the flight path for a safe flight.

    XVS is one of several innovative solutions designed to ensure that the design of the X-59 reduces the sonic boom to the soft boom heard by people on earth. Although the X-59 drone suppression technology is not designed to carry passengers, it can help lift current bans on supersonic flying above the ground and create a new generation of quiet supersonic commercial aircraft. Click here to learn more. "
    1. Sergey39 20 February 2020 22: 15 New
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      Quote: Vasily Ponomarev
      it does not make it very difficult, but generally closes it

      If the pilot is looking through the monitor, why then the protruding cockpit?
  8. Mavrikiy 20 February 2020 18: 49 New
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    The uniqueness of the project lies in the fact that the X-59 QueSST aircraft will be able to switch to the “silent” mode of supersonic flight.
    It should be more modest and more precisely formulated. request
    The purpose of the project: the transition to supersonic flight mode “silently”. repeat
  9. Thrifty 20 February 2020 18: 50 New
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    Sergey, firstly, supersonic planes are still available now, the same Gulf Stream for example, it’s another matter that this is not a mass segment, but a business class. The second - the sound barrier, has not been canceled, it is the speed of sound propagation in the atmosphere, and regardless of the desire is richer than it can be, the sound will not. Another thing is when the aircraft overcomes the barrier at a very high altitude, only then the sound will become weaker. And in another way, go the plane overcomes the barrier, or flies slower than the speed of sound. ..
    1. Errr 20 February 2020 19: 30 New
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      Quote: Thrifty
      ... supersonic aircraft are now available, the same "Gulf Stream" for example ...
      Why all of a sudden? Never a single Gulfstream model has flown at speeds of more than 1000 km / h.
    2. Grigory_45 24 February 2020 18: 31 New
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      Quote: Thrifty
      supersonic aircraft and are now available, the same "Gulf Stream"

      none of the Gulf Stream is supersonic. In general, there are currently no civilian supersonic aircraft in the world
  10. Aviator_ 20 February 2020 19: 28 New
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    The text is illiterate (Google translation of this?) I explain the essence of the problem. When a plane is flying in supersonic sound, a shock wave is formed around it. It wouldn’t be anything, but under certain atmospheric conditions (temperature gradient, etc.) this wave can focus on the earth’s surface, causing various damage (broken glass, etc.). Therefore, currently in the USA and Europe R&D for the creation of an administrative aircraft with a shock wave of reduced intensity, directed downward. (You can go to the top, you cannot go down.) This is achieved by the appropriate aerodynamic shape of the apparatus. That's all. There is no talk of any “noiselessness”. Magazines in their repertoire.
    1. businessv 20 February 2020 22: 03 New
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      Quote: Aviator_
      There is no talk of any “noiselessness”. Magazines in their repertoire.

      Thanks, colleague, helped me avoid cognitive dissonance! drinks
  11. Undecim 20 February 2020 19: 42 New
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    According to the developers of the company Skunk Works (Lockheed Martin division), the noise level when breaking the sound barrier will not exceed the sound of the car door being closed.
    Developers, being professionals, could not say such stupidity, only journalists who did not study physics at school can say this.
    The “sound barrier” is a sharp jump in air resistance that occurs when the aircraft reaches a certain boundary speed, close to the speed of sound, but not reaching it. No noise is generated.
    The sound is created by a shock wave that accompanies a plane flying at supersonic speed. The impact of this wave on the organs of hearing is subjectively perceived as thunder or sound from an explosion.

    A body moving in air at supersonic speed generates a shock wave. Such a shock wave is called a head shock wave. At a sufficiently large distance from the streamlined body, the intensity of this shock wave is small, and it crosses the direction of the incident flow at an angle close to the Mach angle, therefore, the shock wave takes on a characteristic conical shape with a vertex in the region of the front edge of the moving body. This cone is called the Mach cone.
    When this weak shock wave reaches the surface of the earth, a pressure surge at its front acts on the eardrum and is perceived as a sharp and loud clap.
    In other words, if a supersonic aircraft with constant, but supersonic speed began to fly over the listener back and forth, the cotton would be heard every time, some time after flying over the listener at a sufficiently close distance.
    The task is to choose such a fuselage configuration to reduce the sound pressure level when flying at supersonic sound from 110-105 dB to an acceptable 60-75 dB.
    1. eklmn 20 February 2020 22: 18 New
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      Thank you, Undecim, for the technical clarification for me, boots / teapot - it became much clearer ...))
      “According to developers at Skunk Works (Lockheed Martin), the noise level when breaking the sound barrier will not exceed the sound of the vehicle’s door being closed.
      Developers, being professionals, couldn’t say such stupidity, only journalists who did not study physics at school can say this. ”
      Regarding the “pop-door auto”, this is the original text from the site
      Lockheed Martin
      https://www.lockheedmartin.com/en-us/products/quesst.html
      “X-59 is designed to cruise at 55,000 feet at a speed of about 940 mph and create a sound about as loud as a car door closing, 75 Perceived Level decibel (PLdB), instead of a sonic boom.”
      1. Undecim 20 February 2020 23: 26 New
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        I watched the original text. By stupidity is meant not a slam of the door, but noise when breaking the sound barrier.
        1. eklmn 21 February 2020 00: 43 New
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          I see, thanks again ...!
    2. God save the king 20 February 2020 23: 24 New
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      That's just the density of the shock wave directly depends on the aerodynamics of the aircraft.
      For a supersonic needle, the jump will be minimal.
      1. Undecim 20 February 2020 23: 28 New
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        And what did I write about?
        The task is to choose such a fuselage configuration to reduce the sound pressure level when flying at supersonic sound from 110-105 dB to an acceptable 60-75 dB.
  12. thinker 20 February 2020 20: 36 New
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    Russia's idea of ​​creating a modern supersonic passenger aircraft is also in circulation, though only at the level of conversation

    There was such a project S-21, Sukhoi Design Bureau, in 1999, the model of the aircraft was presented at the Le Bourget air show.
    1. businessv 20 February 2020 22: 06 New
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      Quote: thinker
      There was such a project S-21,

      Oh, but the appearance is not one-on-one, but the concept is clearly similar! Maybe that's why they bothered that they saw a chance, having studied our S-21 ?!
    2. Servisinzhener 21 February 2020 20: 23 New
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      There was a project of a supersonic business jet from Tupolev - Tu-444
    3. fider 18 May 2020 15: 46 New
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      thinker
      “There was such a project S-21, Sukhoi Design Bureau”

      I also once made layouts ... laughing
  13. fa2998 20 February 2020 20: 42 New
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    Quote: Vasily Ponomarev
    but the problem of supersonic was still that the engines consume too much fuel, it was inefficient for operators to use them

    They will carry passengers who are "on the drum" that the plane is eating kerosene in tanks, and how much the ticket costs. Many will even get ownership. Such transportation is exclusive, not mass. hi
  14. Dude 20 February 2020 20: 52 New
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    Over the past ~ 30 years, this is probably the fiftieth article (and, certainly, with a sensational headline), where the appearance of a new-super-interesting-profitable-breakthrough-etc., super-sonic is announced.
    Wangyu: again - about nothing. request
  15. 75 Sergey 20 February 2020 22: 26 New
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    Plasma will solve the problem at the rate
  16. Pavel57 20 February 2020 23: 37 New
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    Americans began to create a silent plane about 30 years ago.
    1. Undecim 21 February 2020 01: 15 New
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      Rather, the Americans became concerned about the issue of reducing the noise of supersonic flights more than forty years ago.
      "Experiments distance, the downstream region is subsonic and on Shock Associated Noise of Supersonic Jets." An article in a journal of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics in July 1979.
  17. Kot_Kuzya 21 February 2020 08: 26 New
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    This nonsense reminded me something. Oh yes, the unforgettable “professional” Tukhachevsky demanded from the designers that the DRP should shoot without a jet of fire from behind, so that the DRP could be installed in a tank, bunker or ship. Here is the news about a supersonic plane flying without a shock wave from the same opera wassat
  18. Narak-zempo 21 February 2020 08: 41 New
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    The experimental X-59 QueSST is developed by the creators of U-2 and SR-71 Blackbird

    Dug up and revived?
  19. Calm 21 February 2020 13: 58 New
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    All the same, the air fleet, military or passenger, medicine, space programs have left us much, much ahead, and we must be blind so as not to see this and be silly to argue with this
  20. Old26 21 February 2020 15: 42 New
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    Quote: Aerodrome
    I don’t understand this “noiselessness” very much, but when you can smack from your territory .. Israel isn’t soaring ... now it seems that the main thing is the “range” and “finesse” of the missiles.

    And where does this in the future passenger supersonic aircraft?

    Quote: Aerodrome
    you know that these do not happen

    It certainly doesn’t. But the Concorde and TU-144 (especially its first hulls with engines under the fuselage) are probably disguised bombers? ....

    Quote: figvam
    and already on its basis there will be some kind of supersonic reconnaissance subtle for radars.

    An inconspicuous supersonic reconnaissance aircraft can be made not on the basis of a passenger aircraft.

    Quote: Whalebone
    Passenger supersonic is economically inefficient. The cost of tickets for Concord was very high, while the operation still brought losses and subsidized. Yes, you can build a supersonic business jet for those who don’t count money, and they’ll probably do it soon. With engines from F-18, for example. And the analogue of the B-787 at supersonic will cost as much as the B-777 or even more expensive. Who will fly twice as fast, but 7-10 times more expensive?

    A business class aircraft can and will be in demand. Full-fledged for 150-180 passengers - almost certainly never. Full download does not provide. For the bulk, cost is still more important. than speed. Who needs speed - business class. There at one time we developed 2 Sukhoi cars - S-21 and EMNIP S-51. On the S-21 EMNIP passenger capacity was to be about 8-12 people. On the S-51 - about twice as much ...
  21. Falcon5555 21 February 2020 19: 36 New
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    When standing on the ground, looks like a pelican.
    It is not clear how they will manage it. It must be unstable in a vertical plane. With any accidental deviation up or down, the "beak" will immediately pull it to where it originally deviated. And he will make somersaults and fall apart.
    1. Lad
      Lad 21 February 2020 22: 45 New
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      Send them a textbook on aerodynamics, otherwise they probably never saw him in the eye.
  22. iouris 22 February 2020 16: 04 New
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    Tu-144 and Concorde made their first flight in December-January 1968/1969. Half a century has passed. US law prohibits passenger liners that fly on a regular basis from breaking the sound barrier. Concords made flights to the USA as an exception.
  23. bang April 3 2020 11: 50 New
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    NASA preparing a replacement Concord and Tu-144
    NASA is more likely to restart civilian supersonic. There is nothing to replace, because neither the Concord nor the Tu-144 fly.
  24. DDT
    DDT 15 May 2020 16: 57 New
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    Authoritatively declare. winked Skankork as were idiots, and remained fool in the USSR, the problem of knocked out eardrums was solved by a simple technical solution, ear plugs. Who does not know, I can write an article! drinks