Supersonic civilian air travel is coming a step closer, as Boom Supersonic has selected a 65-acre campus at the Piedmont Triad International Airport in Greensboro, North Carolina as the site of its first full-scale manufacturing facility: the Overture Superfactory. The site is promised to be a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility for the 65-88 seat Overture supersonic airliner, with 400,000 square feet of buildings including final assembly line, test facility and customer delivery centre.
Boom expects to break ground on the factory later this year, with production to begin in 2024. The first Overture aircraft is slated to roll out in 2025, fly in 2026, and carry its first passengers by 2029. While the programme is ambitious, Boom says it is viable, with commercial interest in Overture, including orders and options, currently totalling US$14 billion from United Airlines and Japan Airlines. Boom is also working with the United States Air Force on government applications of the aircraft.
“Selecting the site for Overture manufacturing is a significant step forward in bringing sustainable supersonic air travel to passengers and airlines,” said Blake Scholl, founder and CEO of Boom Supersonic, based in Denver, Colorado. “With some of the country’s best and brightest aviation talent, key suppliers, and the state of North Carolina’s continued support, Boom is confident that Greensboro will emerge as the world’s supersonic manufacturing hub.”
Boom partly selected North Carolina as it has a strong aerospace workforce available, including a large number of US military veterans, as well as good access to technical schools, providing Boom with a pipeline of skilled labour. The Piedmont Triad area is also conveniently located for many tier-one aerospace suppliers, which will also benefit Boom as production of Overture ramps up. Even better: North Carolina is close to the eastern seaboard, which will facilitate supersonic flight testing over the Atlantic Ocean.
Boom expects to bring more than 1,750 jobs to North Carolina by 2030, expanding to a total of more than 2,400 jobs by 2032. North Carolina economists estimate that the Overture Superfactory will grow the state’s economy by at least $32.3 billion over 20 years.
Boom also wants to develop the next generation of supersonic professionals, and will thus also create 200 internships through 2032 for students who attend publicly funded North Carolina universities, community colleges, or technical schools.