Venus Aerospace says its hypersonic plane could fly LA-Tokyo in an hour

  • Venus Aerospace, a startup from Houston, said it was working on a Mach 12 hypersonic aircraft.
  • The trip from Los Angeles to Tokyo could take an hour, the company said.
  • Prime Movers Lab led Venus Aerospace’s $ 3 million seed funding round in March.
  • See more stories on the Insider business page.

Venus Aerospace, a startup from Houston, said it was working on a hypersonic Mach 12 aircraft that would cut the travel time from Los Angeles to Tokyo to an hour.

“It’s for the common people,” said CEO Sarah “Sassie” Duggleby Bloomberg Businessweek.

At maximum speed, the plane would move about 12 times the speed of sound, The Chronicle of Houston reported. Most commercial flights between Los Angeles and Tokyo make the trip in about 12 hours.

The company said on his website that he made breakthroughs in engine efficiency, aircraft shape and on-board cooling technology. This technology would make “hourly global transportation profitable,” the company said.

Venus Aerospace announced in early March a $ 3 million seed fundraiser led by Prime Movers Lab.

“This futuristic concept that was once a dream is now a reality, and watching it physically unfold with a team of talented scientists and engineers is just amazing,” Duggleby said in A press release at the time.

The company’s aircraft would travel at an altitude of around 150,000 feet, or about 28.4 miles, nearly four times higher than most passenger jets, according to reports.

Last week, Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic made its third flight to the edge of space, reaching Mach 3 and an altitude of 55.45 miles. Space begins about 50 miles above the Earth’s surface, according to NASA and the US military.

Venus Aerospace moved to Texas from California to be closer to Spaceport Houston, said Brandon Simmons, of Prime Movers Lab, in a blog post.

Simmons wrote that Duggleby previously worked at Virgin Orbit. Co-founder and CTO Andrew Duggleby has held positions at Virgin Orbit and Virgin Galactic. The startup has around 15 employees.

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