A flight from Recife, capital of Pernambuco, to São Paulo takes about three hours. But imagine being able to travel around the world in a third of that time? That's what China tries to do. In search of ever faster aircraft, the asian giant It has been developing for two years a model capable of reaching six times the speed of sound.

The project schedule, carried out by the Beijing Institute of Technology and the Spacecraft Systems Engineering Institute, predicts that the transport could start operating in 14 years, in the year 2035.

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The aircraft will be able to transport up to ten people to any place on the planet, within an hour. In another ten years, 2045, the idea is to transport 100 people.

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The Chinese super-aircraft is called Starry Sky-2. The 2018 project details show a 45-metre model, one-third larger than a Boeing 737-700, an airplane with more than 10 units in operation and carrying 150 passengers.

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In addition to its length, China's vehicle has delta wings, similar to those of the old Concorde supersonic passenger airliner. The difference, however, is the upward wings. The Starry Sky-2 also has two engines on top of the fuselage.

Chinese researchers test aerodynamic models in the space. The idea is to evaluate the aircraft's performance at high altitudes. Tests are highly needed, mainly because of the challenges posed by speeds greater than five times the speed of sound, or hypersonics.

Another detail observed, at that time of the project, is that the powerful aircraft has areas subject to heat and pressure peaks. This makes extra protection necessary, as the Starry Sky-2 can reach a speed of 7.300 km/h. A commercial jet plane, for example, can reach 900 km/h.

Street: Folha de São Paulo

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