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American Airlines agrees to purchase 20 supersonic planes from Boom

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American Airlines has agreed to buy 20 supersonic Overture planes from Boom Supersonic, the businesses announced Tuesday.

The deal is the second firm order within the last two years for Boom, still years from constructing its first business airplane. United Airlines made a commitment last yr to purchase 15 Overture jets.

“Passengers want flights which can be faster, more convenient, more sustainable and that is what Overture delivers,” Boom CEO Blake Scholl told CNBC. “Flight times may be as little as half as what we now have today, and that works great in networks like American where we will fly Miami to London in lower than five hours.”

Boom says the Overture jet will fly as fast as Mach 1.7, or 1,304 mph, dramatically cutting trans-Atlantic and trans-Pacific flight times. For instance, a flight from Seattle to Tokyo, which usually takes just over 10 hours, might be accomplished in six hours in an Overture, in response to Boom.

“Supersonic travel can be a crucial a part of our ability to deliver for our customers,” American’s chief financial officer, Derek Kerr, said in a press release announcing the order. American is paying Boom an undisclosed amount as a nonrefundable deposit.

The airline also has the choice to buy one other 40 Overtures in the long run.

A mock up of Boom Supersonic’s proposed “Overture” plane. The U.S. firm has said it’s targeting the mid-2020s for it to enter service.

Boom Supersonic

Boom says its supersonic planes will carry 65 to 80 passenger while flying on sustainable aviation fuel offering lower emissions.

Still, Overture is years away from becoming a reality. Boom will construct the jet at a recent manufacturing plant in North Carolina and expects to roll out the primary model in 2025, with the primary flight in 2026. If the flight tests and certification process goes as scheduled, Boom says the Overture will enter business service by the top of the last decade.

— CNBC’s Meghan Reeder contributed to this text.

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