The US Military will be launching a test flight of a hypersonic aircraft capable of reaching any target in the world in less than a half hour.
Read the last part of that sentence again…In the time it takes to watch your favorite sitcom, you can be sipping tea chowing on crumpets in London or head-butting kangaroos with Russell Crowe in Australia.
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA, designed this wedge like aircraft that is capable of reaching 13,000 miles per hour. At that speed, it would be subjected to temperatures in excess of 3500 degrees Fahrenheit, which is enough to melt steel.
The test launch is schedule for this morning in California. This will be the second test flight of the Falcon Hypersonic Technology Vehicle 2 (HTV-2). The first HTV-2 met its demise when it crashed into the Pacific after losing contact nine minutes into the flight. Hopefully this test goes a little smoother but when you’re moving at 22 times the speed of a jetliner, a lot can go wrong…quickly.
Clearly this type of aircraft won’t be available for the general public to hop on, at least in the near future. Hell, even when it is available only people that are Oprah-rich will be able to afford it. So, since I will never get to play with their fancy-shmancy hypersonic vehicle, the least they could do would be to fabricate the hover board from Back to the Future II. Is that too much to ask? God that would be sweet…