The new NASA X-59 aircraft might reach supersonic speeds with less sonic boom.

The X-59 aircraft is designed to be barely audible in flight.

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The quietness of Lockheed Martin’s NASA-developed X-59 Quesst supersonic commercial plane will be demonstrated during a livestream of the flying test. The $247.5 million Quiet SuperSonic Tech, or Quesst for short, will be seen in the program when it suddenly appears from Lockheed Martin’s Skunk Works facility in Palmdale, California.

NASA has been working to prove that the X-59 can fly above cities without producing noise pollution or sonic booms since 2018. With this test flight, the six-year project has made significant progress.

The first flight will be streamed live on YouTube, the NASA app, and the NASA+ streaming service on January 12 at 4 p.m. ET.

As per the space agency, a survey will be carried out to ascertain the noises that individuals perceived from the aircraft during its first flight. It was not apparent how it would find these folks or how many people it would survey. The information acquired will be used by regulators to help propose new rules that limit the use of supersonic planes. The US federal government has banned all private supersonic aircraft from crossing land for more than 50 years.

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said, “This aircraft has the potential to transform aviation in the United States,” when the agency first announced its quiet supersonic technology project in 2018. Even though the aircraft was not supposed to take to the air until 2021, its unveiling today signifies a noteworthy accomplishment for the QueSST project. By 2027, NASA hopes to have more definitive information on the new aircraft technology’s capacity to lower flight noise.

If new regulations permitting supersonic jet aircraft to fly close to land are eventually put into place, high-speed commercial flights may come to pass. Lockheed Martin and NASA announced that they will conduct safety checks for about nine months following the completion of the aircraft’s development. After enough evidence is provided to show that the aircraft can be flown safely, NASA plans to expand the flight testing of the Quesst aircraft to other US cities and carry out more surveys to collect more data on the noise it produces.

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