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Why Vertical take-off and landing(VTOL)?

The short answer is market access. 

There are over 6,000 improved heliports in the US. There are over 4,000 paved runways longer than 1,000 meters. We can take off and land from these ~10,000 airports and heliports.

On the other hand, there are less than 2,000 paved runways over 1,500 meters. Runway-dependent supersonic and hypersonic aircraft are limited to these <2,000 runways.

The Defense Department is also interested in breaking its dependence on runways.

Why rocket engines instead of ramjets or scramjets?

We use rocket engines because they cost less to develop and build. It costs hundreds of millions of dollars to develop supersonic jet engines because they are heavy and complex.

That said, rockets do use fuel faster than air-breathers - and practically-sized rockets flying ballistic trajectories have very short ranges.  Long-range ballistic trajectories require huge, Starship-sized, rockets. But, we’ve solved that problem by using a “boost-cruise-glide” approach, based on decades of work by the military.  Boost-cruise-glide extends our range to make our fuel efficiency competitive with air-breathing aircraft.

Bottom line: We build lower cost engines with longer ranges than air-breathing jet engines.

What about the
sonic boom?

In level flight, the Rocketliner® is so high that the boom barely reaches the ground.  Our sonic boom calculator (based on NASA and FAA work) shows a perceived loudness of 51.6 dB on the ground. 

What about the sonic boom when the aircraft lands?

Unlike our competitors, our boom will be momentary and concentrated in one place - the area below the descent, about 193 km away from the landing pad.

We will plan our flight path so that this small area is overwater or in sparsely populated areas.

That’s quieter than a normal conversation and much quieter than a small jet departing from a runway 6.5 km away.

51.6+
DBA

Rocketliner®

140+

DBA

Threshold of pain

90+

DBA

Heavy Truck
at 7 m

70+

DBA

Small jet departure at 6.5 km from the end of the runway

60+

DBA

Normal conversation

30+

DBA

Whispering

0+

DBA

Silence

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How are costs so low?

The NFA Intercontinental Rocketliner® costs about the same to manufacture and operate as a similarly-sized airplane.

However, it is 10 times faster - plus it is net carbon zero when fueled with Renewable Liquefied Natural Gas (RLNG). 

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FUEL: Why are you using Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) instead of Hydrogen or kerosene-based rocket propellant?

 

LNG is denser than Liquid Hydrogen, so it reduces the size and mass of the aircraft structure.  And it burns up to 80% cleaner than kerosene (using our trajectory).

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“OUR GOAL IS A renewably fueled, net carbon neutral aircraft”

According to the California Air Resources Board when produced from agricultural, wastewater, landfill and other renewable sources, Bio-LNG has a lower Carbon Intensity than Synthetic Aviation Fuel, Hydrogen or even electricity.
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With our digital cabin, you can choose.... Stratospheric views...

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Anywhere in the world in less than two hours

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