Role Supersonic airliner
National origin United Kingdom and France
Manufacturer: BAC (later BAe and BAE Systems)
Sud Aviation (later Aérospatiale and Airbus)
First flight 2 March 1969
Introduction 21 January 1976
Retired 24 October 2003
Primary users British Airways / Air France
Number built 20 (inc. 6 non-commercial aircraft)
Brequet Sahara 765 / Brequet 941 Transport
Nord Noratlas Nord Master / Nord Pinquin
Epsilon / Jodel / Caravelle / Concorde SST
The Aérospatiale/BAC Concorde (/ˈkɒŋkɔːrd/) is a British–French turbojet-powered supersonic passenger airliner that was operated from 1976 until 2003. It had a maximum speed over twice the speed of sound, at Mach 2.04 (1,354 mph or 2,180 km/h at cruise altitude), with seating for 92 to 128 passengers. First flown in 1969, Concorde entered service in 1976 and operated for 27 years. It is one of only two supersonic transports to have been operated commercially; the other is the Soviet-built Tupolev Tu-144, which operated in the late 1970s.
Concorde was jointly developed and manufactured by Sud Aviation (later Aérospatiale) and the British Aircraft Corporation (BAC) under an Anglo-French treaty. Twenty aircraft were built, including six prototypes and development aircraft. Air France and British Airways were the only airlines to purchase and fly Concorde. The aircraft was used mainly by wealthy passengers who could afford to pay a high price in exchange for the aircraft’s speed and luxury service. For example,
The origins of the Concorde project date to the early 1950s, when Arnold Hall, director of the Royal Aircraft Establishment (RAE), asked Morien Morgan to form a committee to study the supersonic transport (SST) concept. The group met for the first time in February 1954 and delivered their first report in April 1955. At the time it was known that the drag at supersonic speeds was strongly related to the span of the wing. This led to the use of very short-span, very thin trapezoidal wings such as those seen on the control surfaces of many missiles, or in aircraft such as the Lockheed F-104 Starfighter or the Avro 730 that the team studied. The team outlined a baseline configuration that resembled an enlarged Avro 730.
This same short span produced very little lift at low speed, which resulted in extremely long take-off runs and frighteningly high landing speeds. In an SST design, this would have required enormous engine power to lift off from existing runways, and to provide the fuel needed, “some horribly large aeroplanes” resulted.
You are definitely intrigued to discoverDassault Concorde SST (1969)
Concorde G-BBDG was used for test flying and trials work. It was retired in 1981 and then only used for spares. It was dismantled and transported by road from Filton to the Brooklands Museum in Surrey where it was restored from essentially a shell. It remains open to visitors to the museum, and wears the original Negus & Negus livery worn by the Concorde fleet during their initial years of service with BA. Concorde G-BOAB, nicknamed Alpha Bravo, was never modified and returned to service with the rest of British Airways’ fleet, and has remained at London Heathrow Airport since its final flight, a ferry flight from JFK in 2000. Although the aircraft was effectively retired, G-BOAB was used as a test aircraft for the Project Rocket interiors that were in the process of being added to the rest of BA’s fleet.
Concorde is an ogival delta winged aircraft with four Olympus engines based on those employed in the RAF's Avro Vulcan strategic bomber. It is one of the few commercial aircraft to employ a tailless design (the Tupolev Tu-144 being another). Concorde was the first airliner to have a (in this case, analogue) fly-by-wire flight-control system; the avionics system Concorde used was unique because it was the first commercial aircraft to employ hybrid circuits. The principal designer for the project was Pierre Satre, with Sir Archibald Russell as his deputy.
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