By Tariq Tahir, NY Post
Plans for a hypersonic plane capable of flying between Beijing and New York in an hour have been unveiled by a Chinese company.
The “rocket with wings” is being designed to fly at an astonishing 7,000 miles per hour and tests are reportedly due to begin next year.
Scientists hope it will be ready to take to the air by 2024.
The futuristic plane is being developed by Space Transportation, which hopes to conduct a full point-to-point flight by the end of the decade, reports Space.com.
A video released by the company shows the plane detaching from the wing powered by rockets after take-off, before continuing to its destination.
Meanwhile, the wing and boosters then land back on the launch pad.
When it arrives, the plane will land using three legs that unfold from the rear.
The company boasts it will be able to link New York with the capital of China in just an hour.
“We are developing a winged rocket for high-speed, point-to-point transportation, which is lower in cost than rockets that carry satellites and faster than traditional aircraft,” the firm told Chinese media.
Hypersonic aircraft are chief among China’s hi-tech plans with the country continuing to pour large sums of money and resources into the sector.
At the end of last year, plans for an aircraft that can transport ten people anywhere on Earth in one hour were unveiled.
The prototype has a pair of delta wings similar to those of the French and British designed Concorde, but with tips pointing up.
The proposed 148-foot hypersonic plane is larger than a Boeing 737 and has two engines mounted on top of its main body, reported the South China Morning Post.
The Communist giant has also been developing a 6,000 mph nuke missile engine which is reportedly based on a design abandoned by Nasa because it cost too much.
US intelligence and military officials were reportedly left stunned last summer after China launched a rocket in space carrying a hypersonic glide vehicle that circled the globe before speeding towards its target.
The nuke-capable missile missed its target by about two-dozen miles when it was secretly launched in August, intelligence sources told the Financial Times.
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