The time taken for an average flight from Miami to Seattle is about six hours and 40 minutes, but imagine if it were possible to reduce that time to 50 minutes or less. A new study by Researchers at NASA and Binghamton University, State University of New York, could result in a substantial decrease in flight times.
The study, funded partly by the U.S. Air Force, is one of the principal steps toward the development of planes capable of moving at hypersonic speeds, five to 10 times the speed of sound. There are presently quite a few problems when it comes to construction of these super planes, said Binghamton University Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering Changhong Ke. The first of which is identifying a material that can handle hypersonic travel.
Normally, carbon nanotubes have been employed in planes for their strength - they are stronger than steel - and their ability to conduct heat. However, BNNTs possess high potential when it comes to air travel.