Virgin Galactic Set To Collaborate With Rolls-Royce On New High Speed Jet
Virgin Galactic may have just revealed the cabin interior of its commercial spacecraft last week, but it has now also announced its plans to build a high speed aircraft in collaboration with Rolls-Royce.
The concept follows the successful completion of its Mission Concept Review (“MCR”) program milestone coupled with authorisation from the Federal Aviation Administration’s (“FAA”) Center for Emerging Concepts and Innovation, which will allow Virgin Galactic to work with the FAA in order to follow the appropriate certification framework for the inventive aircraft.
“We are excited to complete the Mission Concept Review and unveil this initial design concept of a high speed aircraft, which we envision as blending safe and reliable commercial travel with an unrivalled customer experience,” George Whitesides, Chief Space Officer at Virgin Galactic, said in a press release, “We are pleased to collaborate with the innovative team at Rolls-Royce as we strive to develop sustainable, cutting-edge propulsion systems for the aircraft.”
The high speed jet, known as the Mach 3, is set to travel three times faster than the speed of sound while using state-of-the-art sustainable aviation fuel. This makes for an exciting step in Virgin Galactic’s development of industry leading sustainable-friendly high speed aircrafts.
The impressive high speed jet will be able to hold between nine to 19 passengers at 60,000 feet while allowing for custom cabin layouts, including business and first class seating and proper in-flight services.
The design philosophy of the aircraft covers making high speed travel practical, sustainable, safe, and reliable without sacrificing customer experience, and as such, Virgin Galactic will be designing the aircraft to meet a range of scenarios in order to properly provide a comparable experience in comparison to first class commercial flights.
“We are excited to partner with Virgin Galactic and TSC to explore the future of sustainable high speed flights,” added Tom Bell, Rolls-Royce North America Chairman & CEO. “Rolls-Royce brings a unique history in high-speed propulsion, going back to the Concorde, and offers world-class technical capabilities to develop and field the advanced propulsion systems needed to power commercially available high-Mach travel.”