Boom’s supersonic demonstrator aircraft, XB-1, took off for the first time March 22 during a successful inaugural flight at the Mojave Air & Space Port in Mojave, California.

As the world’s first independently developed supersonic jet, XB-1 is an entirely new airframe, designed as a technology demonstrator to inform the design and development of Overture, Boom’s supersonic airliner. In order to test and validate new technologies and designs, XB-1 has undergone extensive ground testing, and has now progressed to flight testing.

Chief Test Pilot Bill “Doc” Shoemaker was at the controls when XB-1 took flight, and Test Pilot Tristan “Geppetto” Brandenburg followed and monitored XB-1 in a T-38 chase plane. XB-1 reached a maximum altitude of 7,120 feet, and did not exceed 238 knots (273 mph) during the 12 minute flight.

The inaugural flight of XB-1 marks a major milestone on the path toward the return of supersonic travel. The XB-1 program set the foundation for the design and development of Overture, Boom’s commercial supersonic plane. Overture will carry 64-80 passengers at Mach 1.7, about twice the speed of today’s subsonic airliners. Optimized for speed, safety, and sustainability, Overture is designed to run on up to 100% sustainable aviation fuel (SAF).

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