Aerion SSBJ will fly in 2023
At October’s National Business Aviation Association Convention in Orlando, Aerion Corporation predicted that its AS2 supersonic business jet will fly in 2023 and make its first transatlantic flight on 24 October that year on the twentieth anniversary of the last commercial flight by Concorde. Concurrently, GE Aviation announced that it has completed initial design of its 16,000-20,000 pounds static thrust Affinity turbofan, the first supersonic engine purpose-built for business jets, which will power the eleven-seat, Mach 1.4, 60,000ft service ceiling AS2. The Affinity, described by GE’S Brad Mottier as “a remarkable engine for a remarkable aircraft”, has been designed to provide efficient supersonic flight over water and subsonic flight over land without requiring modifications to existing compliance regulations, meets stringent Stage 5 subsonic noise requirements, and betters current emissions standards.
Aerion Chief Executive Officer Tom Vice says that the company plans to build a maximum of 500 of the $120 million SSBJS aircraft and will reinvest the proceeds in followon designs that are larger and faster, including a supersonic airliner that is “already on the drawing board but won’t be like existing airliners”.
ABOVE: CG impression of the Affinity turbofanpowered Aerion SSBJ, due to fly in 2023