World's first supersonic private jet will replace
windows with live-streaming screens

| 17 comments
 

Boston engineering firm Spike Aerospace is building a windowless supersonic jet that will be able to fly from London to New York in under four hours, and will offer passengers digital views of their surroundings (+ slideshow).

World's first supersonic private jet will replace windows with live-streaming screens

The S-512 eschews the small porthole style windows typically found on planes in favour of full-length curved digital screens that run the length of the fuselage. An array of cameras installed on the outside of the cabin will feed images through to the displays, which will then be stitched together to create panoramic views.

World's first supersonic private jet will replace windows with live-streaming screens

"Passengers will be able to dim the screens to catch some sleep or change it to one of the many scenic images stored in the system," Spike Aerospace said in a press release.

World's first supersonic private jet will replace windows with live-streaming screens

Unlike standard commercial airliners, which fly at approximately 567 mph, the S-512 will achieve speeds of between 1,060-1,200mph thanks to advanced airframe and engine technology, and the absence of windows.

World's first supersonic private jet will replace windows with live-streaming screens

“It has long been known that the windows cause significant challenges in designing and constructing an aircraft fuselage. They require additional structural support, add to the parts count and add weight to the aircraft,” said the company.

World's first supersonic private jet will replace windows with live-streaming screens

The reduced weight and lack of drag caused by removing the windows will also mean the S-512 will use considerably less fuel compared to other private jets. Spike projects that this means the plane could carry 18 passengers at up to 1370 mph.

World's first supersonic private jet will replace windows with live-streaming screens

The result is a plane that will shave flight times in half, meaning traveling from Los Angeles to Tokyo would take eight instead of 16 hours.

World's first supersonic private jet will replace windows with live-streaming screens

The S-512 is still in development, but Spike Aerospace hopes to begin shipping in December 2018, with a price tag of £48million.

World's first supersonic private jet will replace windows with live-streaming screens

"We expect the first customers for the jet will be businesses and their management teams that need to manage global operations more efficiently. They will be able to reach destinations faster, evaluate more opportunities and have a bigger impact on their enterprises," said the company.

  • pigeon

    Why does it still have some demarkation of windows on the outside? Surely the opportunity here is to lose this for a seamless fuselage?

    • iag

      Without the demarked windows it’ll look like a drone. Not the most positive of associations.

      Got to love that magical table that floats.

  • Felix Tannenbaum

    To me, I would much rather see the clouds with my own two eyes. Intellectually I understand that there may not be much difference between what my eyes could see and what a digital screen can, and I understand that a digital screen could actually do a bunch of things my eyes and a window just can’t.
    But it seems to me that we are already spending most of our time in screen space. How nice it might be to actually exist in the real world.

    • boooo!

      I think the point is that windows have to be scrapped in order to go supersonic. I think the screens are more of a marketing stunt than anything else. There will be no sense of depth and the perspective and will be weird from all angles except one. This looks nice in pictures, but in real life it would probably be replaced by some kind of light effects or live-wallpaper-type thing.

      • roir

        Marketing stunt is the keyword here.

  • Fed Fef

    In what universe does Los Angeles – Tokyo take 16 hours?

  • Dr. Form

    Why even report about this? The interior looks like the average German working class home. Apparently the concept phase for this project was “supersonic” too. This makes me sad.

  • And

    This may be a silly question but do the pilots get windows or do they just sit in front of a 3D TV screen?

  • George Alexander Petkov

    I don’t see it viable. Back in the day when we had no internet, Concorde still couldn’t make it and proved to be a massive failure in terms of revenues.

    Today, business owners and managers don’t need to travel thousands of miles to make sure their businesses across the world work the way they should, as we have all the means we need to do this from a distance. Even tools as common as Skype are used to conduct interviews with people in different country or even continent. Online management systems provide all the insight we need. And we even see more and more business owners opting for the low-cost airlines for travel within Europe or the US.

    In terms of the design – as much as I’m a huge geek and think the screens are cool as an idea, I would rather see it through a window with my own eyes, as Felix Tannenbaum mentioned.

  • Marco Lammers

    Much that raises eyebrows in this proposal. For example, aircraft windows are typically used with our nose glued to the glass to try and get as much as possible a perspective looking down.

  • http://www.libertydisciple.com/ The Liberty Disciple

    “This won’t cause motion sickness” said the engineer testing this inside a simulator.

  • Dylan

    I’m just finding it hard to explain why a supersonic business jet would try to cut down on drag by deleting the windows and having straight wings. It’s rather like cutting down on weight by cutting your hair and having a skin rub rather than just taking the obvious action and going on a diet.

    It also looks like landing will be hard with that nose . I wonder if they will use a drop nose or cameras? As well as the above, I’m sure that people will enjoy having multiple business jets nosily sonic booming above them. At least Concorde was larger so it would take more passengers less frequently, if demand actually comes through with this aircraft the noise pollution is potentially terrible.

  • I know

    Mum and Dad always told me never sit too close to the TV.

  • Freeway Flyer

    If they could just make the real windows look like the picture, we would be a step closer to fulfilling our human fantasy of actually “flying”.

  • Rae Claire

    The sort of folks who would be flying in this plane (and only over oceans anyway) are probably not window-peepers to start with, so they might like it. For the coach class class (me), I think the relief given by a glimpse of something other than our tray tables is valuable.

  • KK

    Publicity stunt! This plane won’t happen, the designs haven’t considered that the planes centre of gravity needs to be over the wing, and the long nose will make it unstable. Also, the wings look very rectangular! It’s like they came of a Cessna!

  • Porschephile

    Straight wings? Consistently supersonic?
    It does look cool but the designer is clearly on crack.