Boeing showed off its new plane -- and boasted about big, multi-billion-dollar orders for the coming years -- but the real star of the Paris Air Show this past weekend was the ZEHST, which stands for Zero Emission Hypersonic Transportation. It will take about 40 years to build, but the mock-up attracted a lot of visitors when it was displayed at Le Bourget Airport for the oldest and biggest air show in the world.
Seen as the heir to the Aerospatiale-BAC Concorde, the ZEHST will reach speeds of up to 3,125 mph on a mix of oxygen and hydrogen. "The project is being overseen by Airbus' parent company, EADS, based in Toulouse, France," AOL reported. "EADS expects the planes to carry roughly 100 passengers, and expects that the aircraft will be able to launch for a regular runway, omitting the 'sonic boom' noises of the Concorde."
At projects speeds, flights on the ZEHST will take only minutes. A trip from New York to London could be cut down to only about an hour; London to Istanbul, 30 minutes.
"It is not a Concorde but it looks like a Concorde, showing that aerodynamics of the 1960s were already very smart," Jean Botti, innovation and technology director of EADS, told the Daily Mail. "The plane would fly just above the atmosphere, meaning it could fly at more than 3,000 mph."