Supersonic hopeful Boom Technologies has named its choice for an engine supplier for its 88-seat Overture Mach-busting airliner project. Florida Turbine Technologies, acquired in 2019 by San Diego, California-based Kratos Turbine Technologies, is best known for drone engines. It will be joined on the project by General Electric’s GE Additive division, a specialist in additive manufacturing, better known as 3D printing.
Other supersonic aircraft efforts have selected modified versions of existing turbofans. Rolls-Royce stepped away from the Overture project earlier this year and there has not been demonstrable interest from other established airliner turbofan producers.
Boom has suggested that a clean-sheet design is best. Facing down industry skepticism, Boom CEO Blake Scholl said, “This is the first engine designed from scratch for sustainable commercial supersonic flight. I understand that people say Boom’s got its work cut out for us.” He added that he hopes to welcome skeptics on board for a flight on the Overture in the future.
The four-engine Overture design is expected to fly at Mach 1.7. Market hurdles include regulations that currently ban supersonic flight over land in the U.S., limiting operations to overwater routes. Boom said it has received unspecified deposits for the Overture from American Airlines and United. The Overture is slated to be built in Greensboro, North Carolina.