GREENSBORO, N.C. — The founder and CEO of Boom Supersonic, the high-speed airplane manufacturer planning to build a factory at the Piedmont Triad International Airport, visited Greensboro Thursday for President Biden's remarks at North Carolina A&T State University.
President Biden applauded the nation's largest historically black college/university for its role in preparing students for STEM and also discussed the Triad's manufacturing growth.
"Instead of shuttered factories, we're building clean energy technology that's going to power the future in America and around the world," Biden said Thursday.
Boom Supersonic CEO Blake Scholl is excited for what the future holds.
"There is tremendous energy and importance in a renaissance of American leadership and a renaissance of American manufacturing," said Scholl, when asked why Boom wanted to have a presence at Biden's speech. "When it comes to supersonic specifically, China’s working on this, Russia is working on this and America needs to boom. America needs to be a leader in high-speed (aviation)."
The company announced in January it will build its first manufacturing plant at Piedmont Triad International Airport in Greensboro. Boom expects to break ground on the facility later in 2022 and production will begin in 2024.
Boom is bringing more than 1,700 jobs to Greensboro by 2030 and investing more than $500 million in our area. The company said it hopes to employ 2,400 workers by 2032. Officials said the jobs will pay an average of $69,000 a year - more than Guilford County's median wage.
The Colorado-based company plans to build and test its Overture supersonic airliner at PTI. The jet concept can carry 88 passengers and fly at twice the speed of normal passenger jets all on sustainable fuels. The first Overture aircraft will be unveiled in 2025, fly in 2026, and carry its first passengers by 2029.
"We love the deep history in this community," Scholl said. "And, in my mind, it goes all the way back to the Wright brothers and I love that we are building a supersonic renaissance not too far from where the first airplane was flown."
Scholl said he is glad to see more attention on sustainable aviation fuel from the Biden Administration.
"At Boom, something we deeply believe in is a world in which more people can go more places, more often is a better world for us to live in, a better world for our children to grow up in," Scholl said.
United has already put in an order for 15 Overture aircraft, once they are ready for commercial flights. According to Scholl, tickets would be about 75% less expensive than the Concorde, the supersonic plane that was in service from the 1970s until 2003. Scholl said tickets on the Concorde could cost thousands of dollars. When it comes to safety, the CEO said they are designing Overture to the same "most stringent safety standards" that apply to all aircraft.
Boom Supersonic said Overture won't fly faster than the speed of sound while over land, so people on the ground won't be exposed to sonic booms.
While over the ocean, Overture will fly at supersonic speeds. The company said passengers won't even notice when the plane breaks the sound barrier.
"It’s important to us that when we bring supersonic flight to a community, it’s good news, not scary news because people are worried about the noise impacts," said Scholl.