Back to Squawk list
  • 47

Rolls Royce Withdraws from Boom Supersonic Partnership

Rolls Royce and Boom conclude their partnership for the development of the engines on their Boom Overture aircraft. This leaves the 2029 date for the Overture looking less likely. ( More...

Sort type: [Top] [Newest]

mbrews 24
Boom, there it is ..... No engine - no flying
victorbravo77 10
Hey now, that's not fair to kites.
skylab72 1
BOOM, hello GE...
mbrews 4
there is a saying " Fools rush in, where wise ones fear to tread "

- IMHO, GE managers are no fools, and are not likely to rush in.

Shenghao Han 10
One of the biggest challenges of supersonic airline is the engines.
Really Tu-144 biggest failure is those terrible engines compared to Concord's Olympus 593.
No engine, no plane.
patrick baker 11
this aircraft development would have benefited a few elite in-a hurry travelers who mistakenly think their time is worth more to the world than the envirnometal damage comming up from their travels on Boom and similar aircraft. Rolls may have taken pencil to paper, firguring developmental costs divided by potential sales volume, concluding correctly this project is a loser in all aspects.
Peter Fuller 11
No doubt a business case for this engine could not be made, hence Rolls’ exit from the enterprise. The engine developed for Concorde was based on a military engine, and of course the whole Concorde program depended on governmental support and subsidy. Then and now a commercial supersonic airliner program isn’t viable without government money and lots of it. That’s not in the cards for Boom, so very unlikely their Overture airplane will ever make it into service.
Chris B 4
Exactly. Certain airlines are going to look like dummies.
patrick baker 6
what does it say that it took a financial analysis by Rolls ROyce to quash this misbegotten aircraft rather than the environmental case all staring us in the face.
mbrews 5
Your comment fails to consider whether Boom was paying RR for the previous studies, and when faced with committing their own resources, RR wisely says No Thank You, we are finished. It’s Always been a business case balancing risk vs reward
Peter Fuller 3
In our system the costs of environmental damage caused by manufacture and use of products made by for-profit entities are mostly externalized, to be dealt with by government at all levels, rather than by manufacturers and users directly. Accordingly, Rolls-Royce and Boom need only look at financial matters when making business decisions.
patrick baker -2
we all live on planet earth with a fragile atmosphere, and none of us can evade with silly semantics the responsiblilty to preserve and protect that fragile atmosphere that protects us all. Under our system- really....Sleeping through science classes has only served you badly in later life.
Mike Monk 1
But we are not all as gullible as most others.
David Rice -1
You do get that some humans are really selfish and don’t care about their impact on the planet, right? It has nothing to do with sleeping through science class, and much more to do with sleeping through ethics class. BTW - those people call themselves “Republicans”. Not “conservatives”, mind you, Republicans no longer espouse conservative ideals.
SkyAware123 -2
You do know there are democrats who prefer to dictate rules that don't work. The headline this week was: We won't allow ICE cars by 2030 (or35?) to be sold in our state. That VERY SAME WEEK the same people were told NOT to charge their electric cars because there isn't enough juice. Now that's solution for ya. They're called democrats. They don't think, they follow the herd. Mind you they are also called SHEEP.
Bruce Horwitz -1
The mandate for more EV's tomorrow is not in contradiction with the request to not charge them today. Instead, it is a recognition that we cannot keep dumping carbon into the atmosphere and a reminder that we must strengthen our infrastructure, as has been long recognized.

BTW, since you asked an irrelevant question, I'll ask: what do you call people who continue to support an ex-president who, to this day, has refused to accept his loss? Sheep is too nice. Oh, yeah, republicans, at least the primary voters. As for the republican politicians, cynical cowards seems appropriate.
SkyAware123 -1
I didn't ask any questions, let alone irrelevant ones. idiot. What do you call who continue to deny they bought the election in fraudulent and obvious ways? Sheep is indeed too nice, they are THIEVES CROOKS CRIMINALS. GO look at the 'results' under biden. disastrous doesn't even describe it. Decline everywhere and got us involved in a never ending war. Only a complete moron would believe these amateurs won.
David Rice -1
Your input, as usual, is not relevant to the conversation. Please return to your Cheetos/Mom’s basement.

[This comment has been downvoted. Show anyway.]

Mike Monk 2
Insults are usually the tool of those with little interlect or without anything useful to say.
uapilot -3
Cool, let’s compare educational and experience and see! Please????
uapilot -6
Rather. Let’s compare educations and aviation experience, hours, theatres, wars, airlines, type ratings….please? PRETTY PLEASE numbnuts!
lynx318 1
Did you even read the article? If a company like RR are in trouble, it's just another reflection of how the world economy is currently in trouble. Not the time to be wasting money on an uneconomical venture.
David Rice 0
Was this discussion about you? Why are you trying to make it about you? Focus…we’re discussing the business case for the development of an aircraft. Looks like you were easily distracted. Obviously you are someone not very educated. You lose. I love “owning” the Trumptards.
21voyageur 1
That environmental concerns were not high on the criteria list of the business plan.
SkyAware123 1
puhlease. Those few airplanes they would make (if ever) will make no difference. And if it's on sustainable fuel there is nothing.
Stephen Leftly 2
Actually SSTs, even on "sustainable" fuel ( itself a unicorn that doesn't exist - see below), due to the effect of releasing a lot of water vapor in the stratosphere, have large impacts on global warming.

From :

"Overall, the climate effect of a supersonic fleet is considerably larger than that of a
subsonic fleet. According to the IPCC [4], the RF from supersonic aircraft is about five times
larger than the RF from the subsonic fleet"

The only good thing is that as you say the number would be presumably pretty low.

SAF : If we use the current sources (fats oils greases ) we are simply taking them away from other uses (such as animal feed stock) which then causes other problems - like food price increases. If you look at the process it commonly calls for the addition of hydrogen - how is that made? Well that takes even more (green?) energy and so it goes. They only way you get anywhere near to zero emission for aviation is by using direct air capture which then uses renewable (Solar/Wind) electricity and right now we are not producing anywhere near enough solar/wind renewable energy. If Solar/Wind produced electricity is used for aircraft fuel it only means that somewhere else some fossil fuel is used to make up the shortfall.

You notice I left out nuclear...there are serious issues there that the nuclear fanboys like to gloss over. Nuclear could be an option : IF we could make them two or three orders of magnitudes safer, and IF we found an actual workable solution to safely storing heavy metal waste and a way to keep it safe for 250,000 years or so, and IF we found a way of getting at least 1,000 1GWe reactors built in the US (~20 per state) (note depending on how large efficiency gains are from switching to electric production rather than fossil fuels the 1,000 reactors is very optimistic it could easily be 3,000...60 per state)

Sadly there are no easy answers in the short to medium term ( medium being out to +30 years). I really wish there were but as of now we mostly have marketing hype in terms of SAF.
Colin Seftel 2
From Wikipedia, "The aircraft is intended to be capable of running completely on Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF)"
uapilot 2
SAFs? Another marketing lie! I know, let’s get really huge rubber bands and launch the supersonics across the pond!!!
sparkie624 4
Not really surprising... Not sure the world is ready for another supersonic at this time. Maybe in 20 years or so when there is more technology to back it. Even though we have planes to do it military wise, the military doesn't even have Supersonic troop Transports!
David Rice -6
What makes you any judge of what “the world is ready for”? “We have planes to do it military wise…”. That statement alone fulfills your promise of stupidity; what do “Supersonic troop Transports” have to do with an airline business case discussion? Please go back to your bowl of Cheetos in your mother’s basement.
Richard Woollams 4
This plane was vaporware from the start.
21voyageur 5
Hate to say I told you so, but I told you so. ;-{) This was all about money and not actually about building a serious commercial aircraft. Go public, bring in gobs of investor money primarily from speculators, target take out by one of the big boys, and sail into the sunset. Glad this happened before too many investors got suckered and burned. All IMHO.
mbrews 5
Well put. I had the same impression when I looked into the meager qualifications of Boom's venture enterprise. Zero track record of building ANY commercial aircraft
uapilot 4
Hate to break this to everyone BUT supersonic transport WILL NEVER be economically feasible and Boom hasn't had a single flight hour of supersonic flight yet as it’s still a “concept” that foolish airlines have poured millions into vice spending it on current ACTUAL operational aspects.
21voyageur 3
My pretty safe guess is that the airlines have not spent a cent of their capital. The currency given to BOOM was the airline's brand which will soon be forgotten.
SkyAware123 1
This day and age where the rich get richer there IS a market for it. Now as to how much sense it makes is another question.
21voyageur 2
The ultra-wealthy market that would actually purchase such aircraft exists but is very minute. I would further suggest that it is shrinking as the NetJets of the world have commoditized travel for the wealthy. Why spend $70-$80 million when you can have one at the ready for a mere fraction via fractional ownership? The ultra-wealthy typically got that way via financial acumen. The key success factor in aviation development and success has tipped away from fast, shiny, exclusive, and comfy, to one of simple volume. A general parallel to Netjets at 40,000 feet could be Uber at 0 feet. The times are not a changing, they have changed. All, IMHO.
Mark Kortum 2
Bravo to Boom for trying.
21voyageur 4
Not from me. This was a huckester-led business move aimed at making rich people richer at the expense of others nieve enough to invest.
mbrews 1
completely spot-on, Dan
C Anderson 0
No doubt you are a very nice person, especially so if the m in mbrews stands for "more." But I actually loathe the phrase 'spot-on". (By the way, I don't care much for the word "loathe" either.)
mbrews 1
Thats fine, no offense taken. There is an international crowd on flightaware.

Well, my ancestors probably brewed beer. but I learned to drink beer years back in Florida where the climate requires it .....
C Anderson 2
The critical comments are interesting. My view is that too much negative stuff inhibits actual innovation. I like to imagine that Wiulber and Orville set out to make a better bicycle and wound up with this funny contraption that flys. Too bad they didn't survive, and their know-it-all critics did. So maybe commercial supersonic flight actually isn't feasible, but the new stuff we might learn in the process is forever lost if we don't do the work.
SkyAware123 -3
Comparing a multi billion dollar investment to a plane put together in a garage by 2 guys is beyond ridiculous.
Leander Williams 2
Maybe GE will come up with an engine to compete.
Peter Fuller 2
Maybe, but best case the engine for the Boom Overture would still be a low-volume specialized niche product. Design, development, testing, certification, and production start-up costs would have to be amortized across a small number of engines. Most likely GE would quickly conclude that the numbers don’t work.
mbrews 1
If you probe further into Boom's public website, you will see that Bomm claims they will use (3) small GE J85 engines in their small XB-1 so-called technology demonstrator.

J85 engines are lightweight, but can only produce about 5000 pounds of thrust each. Widely used on T-38 Talon 2-seater supersonic trainer aircraft in US Air Force.

J85's with such low thrust are clearly NOT suitable for a theoretical 100-passenger supersonic transport.
21voyageur 2
IMHO, that strategy was to maintain some degree of interest/momentum/credibility as they attempt to build this business. I purposely used "business" and not "aircraft" in my prior sentence as the whole Boom pitch was, well, just that. A pitch. Generate investment, not an engineering exercise.
John Nichols 2
For a few billion, a bizjet 1+ planform is possible though not likely... same over water only restrictions as ever, but intercontinental surely. Maybe Elon could design a horizontal rocket 12-15 pax system...

He has my numbers. People stupid enough to spend millions for a suborbital hop would blow billions to get to London in thirty minutes from Miami...
Rob Palmer 2
I remember when a bunch of guys at the AF Association set-up at the Shoreham in Washington were there at past midnight watching the chandeliers being moved aside for this enormous GE engine to be wheeled in for tomorrow's display. The engine has to come first. I was the guy who asked "Wonder what the plane is going to look like?"
Richard Ciancuillo 1
Will try again soon ..
21voyageur 2
will never see the light of day - even if they find somebody else to join this circus play.
Joe Riley 1
Boom goes Zoom. Cheaper. Faster.
Don Hines 1
They could still go PW or GE.
Martin Dennett 2
Who will respond in the same way as RR...
James Simms 1
sreekumar kumaran 1
As the new world order being 'save the planet by reducing co2' by our ideolog western leaders who are into the climate change fracas, the chance of anything like a supersonic engine using fossil fuel is not going to fly.
jbermo 1
Too difficult to meet the international emissions standard of the 2030s.
21voyageur 1
In the medium o long run, volume of travel will be the determining factor and the BOOM plan - unless extended out decades - is aimed at elite travel. Any Concordes flying today? What's old is new.
SkyAware123 -4
Bill Piper 1
Maybe RR decision wasn't made on a purely financial basis - I would have thought further development of supersonic engines would have served them well for the military market. - Possibly, is was a lack of empathy between the two parties...
mbrews 1
Lack of empathy (feelings) - NO. Lack of Competence (at the swaggering newcomers of Boom) - YES

The military has plenty of expensive supersonic jet engines, commercial supersonic transports
simply cannot be operated profitably. See : history of Concorde
John Nichols 1
P/W J-58. Supersonic without the Ram feature. Or the Six Ramjet feature ducts...

1950's technology. Special fuel, and needs 1000 HP starter. But, if this can happen sixty years ago, well, duh....
21voyageur 2
So stepping back = stepping forward? Nothing like an SR-71 for the rich.
Elliot Cannon 1
I'm just an old retired guy but just exactly how fast do you need to fly to get somewhere?
21voyageur 1
1 mile an hour faster than your neighbor. All about being #1.
SkyAware123 0
All of the UK is on a clear path to nothingness. Including RR. DO you really think they're focused on a supersonic prestige BS project? They're probably gone within 10 years.
21voyageur 1
I trust you are limiting your comment to UK aviation. And the USA is in better shape? If Boeing is the bellwether of US aviation then the same outcome. At least the UK was smart enough to be part of the Airbus consortium.
SkyAware123 0
Airbus isn't going to hold up RR if they go under. Airbus will just use a different supplier like GE. As far as boeing goes that's true, they blew it compared to Airbus. But Boeing is 'too big to fail' and big government will step in. Too many military commitments to have them fail. Plus US government is handing out money like candy anyways so what's a couple billion more?
Jesse Carroll -8
If they fly over Califonias nutcase gov...doesnt it have to be electric by 2035?
Im Elon Musk can build something for the elites to get to their vacation homes !Just saying!
Bill Piper 1
I think we have enough problems changing our cars over to electric by then! How do you expect a s/sonic plane to be electric by then? - I doubt even E M can achieve that one!
21voyageur 1
In the absolute best of scenarios what was envisioned by BOOM, is elitist travel. Same as E Musk's space travel BS.
Gustavo Koldorff 0
It's not IF, it's WHEN.


Don't have an account? Register now (free) for customized features, flight alerts, and more!
Did you know that FlightAware flight tracking is supported by advertising?
You can help us keep FlightAware free by allowing ads from We work hard to keep our advertising relevant and unobtrusive to create a great experience. It's quick and easy to whitelist ads on FlightAware or please consider our premium accounts.