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NASA To Start Quiet Boom Flights over Galveston in Fall

To prepare for community overflights under its silent supersonic aircraft test program with the X-59 starting in 2023, NASA will fly an F/A-18 as it breaks through the speed of sound over Galveston, Texas, beginning in November. NASA’s F/A-18 testbed will be flown using a “quiet supersonic dive maneuver” to “aim quiet sonic thumps at a specific area,” a procedure that the agency first tested in 2011 over Edwards Air Force Base. ( More...

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Jiten Patel 3
Hopefully, silent boom will not be noticeable! it would be a move forward if we can get fleets of concord speed or faster in the air sooner than later.
ian mcdonell 1
David Lee 2
Read the article.
So we can send supersonic drones in-country to kill bad guys without waking the neighbors.
glen krc 1
This was the subject of a similar squawk last month. The accompanying video seemed to indicate that they had indeed been able to muffle booms significantly.
eichelro 1
Good to get some baseline hatred started before everyday booms start.
Matt Lacey 1
I wonder how they decide where to do the tests. They were doing this offshore of NASA Kennedy last year.
AWAAlum 1
Oh yay ! More fear is that by the time we've figured out how to reverse the damage, it will be irreversible. It's mind boggling how we stumble along killing this incredibly glorious place we call home.

And as an aside, I remember those tests in the 60s...sonic booms at 3:00 each afternoon. Yoiks. Even knowing it was coming, it'd shake you to the core.
chalet -5
This is going to be a waste of money. The sound barrier is the sound barrier regardless how much NASA wants to sugar coat it. One day in Sept.´67 yours truly was walking to classes at The San Luis Obispo Polytechnic College (now University) in California when two "explosions" shook the h... out of me. Two F-4s were running tests to see how people would react to sonic booms. The rest is history. There ain't and won´t be mufflers for that.
Dan Tennison 2
Actually this is not such a bad idea. I believe the X-59 has a very high ballistic coefficient and its sonic boom will be much less than a Concord type plane. Think middle sonic boom vs Concord. The fighter jets will need to be modified with very long nose cones or something to get their BC down.
flypilot12 2
NASA built a plane dubbed "The Pelican" that was a heavily modified F-5 that they used to test breaking the sound barrier with out a loud sonic boom. Read about it here:
Matt Lacey 1
Your comment is ignorant of recent decades of research on how to form the aircraft to deaden the shockwaves caused by supersonic flight. F-4s certainly weren’t designed for that. The waves can be curved and spread out so that they are thumps as described, rather than sharp cracks.
chalet 0
Your optimism is admirable.
chalet 0
The sonic boom is a function of the size of the aircraft. Braniff leased for a while one or two Concords and the first route was JFK-DFW, needless to say they could not fly supersonic for the reaction would have been terribly detrimental to the airline´s reputation so they cancelled it after a while. British Airways extended its LHR-JFK route to Miami and although a great deal of the routing was way offshore, they could not fly supersonic so they dropped the exersice. The weight of the Super F-18 is about 60,000 pounds and that of the Concorde 400,000. Also I understand that the strength of the sonic boom is a function of the speed of the vehicle, so you can expect that the tri-Sonic vehicle to shatter all sorts of windows on its path except perhaps those installed in banks at street level; even Cruise vessels are best advised to take precaution (sarcasm intended).
flypilot12 1
The size of the aircraft has little to do with it. The space shuttle was just a bit bigger than a 737 and I used to hear the double booms from them over my home in Florida often. It wasn't really that bad, while I've heard F-16s do it in person and these are much smaller, and the booms seemed very much louder to me. The fact that you just get down on the research and see no value in it, and assume, ignorantly, that it can never be surmounted is very telling of your state of mind:It's already made up and no amount of new information is going to change it for you. In that regard you like a flat earther, ignorant and proud of that fact, and as a result, not worth the aggravation of further consideration.
chalet 1
From your sobriquet it seems that you are no more than a plain mechanic for choppers, which is fine, but your knowledge on aviation matters, specially about sonic booms earns you a Zero, Zilch, Nada. NEver mind the silly comments about my personality that says a lot about yours. Anyway I have a tendency to be well informed before issuing a comment so going back to my previous statement that Sonic booms are affected among others by weight and size of the vehicle, I would strongly suggest you to read the following NASA article (don't think you may have the nerve to question them, or do you):
flypilot12 1
Thank you for proving my point. As is shown here a more slender and larger airplane produces a lower shock wave than a smaller and more blunt aircraft it is all about cross section and that was exactly what I said in my comment. What I find interesting is that you post a NASA article to support your position while deriding this squawk which is about an experiment from the same institution. As for being a helicopter mechanic I am but I have also worked on heavies, corporate birds, and fighters as a civilian and I am a part 147 instructor. The rest of your replies in this thread speak for themselves.


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