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January 27, 2016updated Nov 12, 2020

The Future of Air Travel? The Antipode: From New York to London in Just 11 Minutes

By Zahra Al-Kateb

the-antipodeCharles Bombardier, the engineer behind the Skreemr jet, has unveiled another radical and faster design for future air travel.

Named the “Antipode”, the latest concept design can fly from New York to London in just 11 minutes while carrying 10 people at a time.

The Canadian designer told Forbes: “I wanted to create an aircraft concept capable of reaching its antipode – or diametrical opposite – as fast as possible.”

Developed in collaboration with Lunatic Koncepts founder Abhishek Roy, the Antipode will be able to turn an airfield into a flying ship thanks to the rocket boosters using liquid-oxygen or kerosene on its wings. Using a magnetic field, the jet would push along two conductive railings followed by the rocket boosters firing, allowing the jet to be pushed into the air. Finally the engine would propel the aircraft even further, travelling over 10 times the speed of sound.

This new design follows his previous Skreemr concept – an aircraft which promises to transport passengers between New York and London in under 30 minutes.

However, the road to developing the futuristic Skreemr concept design had its fair share of issues. Pressing problems included the aircrafts inability to lessen the sonic boom, as well as the heat that would rapidly accumulate while accelerating. However, shortly after the release of Skreemr, Bombardier was contacted by engineer Joseph Hazeltine and a solution came to light.

“I was contacted by Joseph Hazeltine, who proposed using a novel aerodynamic phenomenon called ‘long penetration mode’ (LPM).”

Unlike the Skreemr, the Anitpode would be capable of taking off from any airfield thanks to the rocket boosters attached to the wings. This would allow the aircraft to accelerate with enough thrust to reach up to 40,000 feet and Mach 5. “The aircraft’s onboard computer would then ignite its supersonic combustion ramjet engine and accelerate up to Mach 24” Bombardier added.

“The leading edge of the wings of the aircraft could be fitted with linear nozzles so that air could flow out of them too. That way, all leading edge surfaces could be cooled by LPM.”

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However, due to the fact that LPM can reduce heat but not eliminate it entirely, the aircraft would need to be built using heat and pressure proof materials.

Despite being faster than the Skreemr, according to Bombardier it could cost less to make. “The cost of producing the Antipode would be less than that of the Skreemr since it would be smaller and use existing technology” he told Forbes. “But it would still cost a lot more than any business jet on the market today.”

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