The world of aviation has always been at the very edge of innovation, bringing in new and exciting technologies that have been adopted later on by the consumer market. When you come to think of it, the private jet industry has a very high standard to fulfill. When your customers are all high-net-worth individuals who literally make the world go round, you are expected to deliver on a standard defined by excellence. Naturally, this means that the stalwarts of this industry, Bombardier, Embraer, Cessna, Gulfstream, etc fight for the smallest competitive edge amongst themselves. This translates to large research and development budgets and entire teams that are just dedicated to thinking up the next big innovation.
This list is only going to reinforce that belief even more. The future offerings in the world of private jets are only getting more interesting as time goes on. Here are some of the most interesting and intriguing private jet concepts in the world.
Overture by Boom
The ending of the Concorde’s legendary run as the fastest passenger jet in the world seemed to signal to many people that perhaps going as fast as possible was not the best place to concentrate their energy. After this point, passenger jets focused a lot more on comfort and greater feasibility. However, today, there is another startup that has decided to go down this path once again. Boom, a company that has decided to redefine the space of the private jet sector by essentially promising to cut flight times in half. In a world in which stocks crash in a matter of minutes and life goes by at a speed of gigabytes per second, the fact that this concept jet can take you from New York to London in about 3.5 hours means that there is a lot of interest that this jet has rightfully garnered. It is said to be capable of reaching speeds in excess of Mach 2.2, while even the fastest private jets in the market right now stay well under Mach 0.9. The demonstrator was unveiled to the public in 2020 and Boom are aiming of releasing this jet in the market in 2026. If it is as good as they say, the annals of history have to be prepared to be re-written.
IXION by Technicon Design
Everyone remembers the first time they traveled on an aircraft. Looking at the whole world and passing it by on a clear day, seeing humanity reduced to mere figures in your line of sight, is truly an experience that sticks in the mind. When you are in the air at 40,000 feet, all that humanity is so proud to have built seems so insignificant and unimportant at first. The first reaction of innovators when they see an experience like that is to devise ways in which they can enhance it even more. If a single window of an aircraft can provide a view that is so breathtaking, what if the entire aircraft was transparent? In terms of the physical requirements that an aircraft’s body needs to pass, there’s no realistic way in which an aircraft can be made completely see-through. In typical innovator fashion, Technicon Design came up with a work around so ingenious that it might just work. Essentially, the interior of the aircraft is lined with screens all around, which project a real-time view of the outside of the aircraft through the use of 360-degree cameras. You get the experience that you are seeing through the aircraft, but in reality, you are only seeing a 360-degree live feed of what the outside world looks if the aircraft was transparent. Yes, this idea really is that crazy.
Alice by Eviation
Electric aircraft have always been a tough nut to crack. The classic problem is the fact that an aircraft needs to be as light as possible in order to be airborne. On the other hand, electric batteries are extremely heavy, and this means that batteries have to shed a lot of weight before we can see electric aircraft really become the paradigm-shift they have always been poised to be. While the electric revolution has finally hit the world of automobiles, with more and more electric cars being made every year, we are yet to see a truly sustainable electric aircraft. Alice by Eviation is another attempt in achieving that very goal. It has a range of nearly 500 nautical miles and has been one of the best attempts at creating a paradigm shift in the world of aviation. The development process of the aircraft has been less than ideal, with several issues coming into play and hindering the public launch. Nevertheless, the fact that they have been able to create an electric aircraft with about 440 nautical miles in range is certainly an achievement that has to be appreciated.
Pulse by Embraer
Perhaps the most ‘hopeful’ of all of these concepts, it isn’t very likely that we would see the pulse turn into reality any time soon. It plays on another dream that humankind has had for a long time, an aircraft that would be able to merge the experience of being a car into itself. Even Embraer themselves are of the opinion that the aircraft would be a thing in 2070, most people who are reading this right now would be probably dead by then. However, Embraer do get 10/10 for their imagination. The aircraft uses materials that literally have not been put into existence yet, like transparent metals. The ‘pod’ is immensely important to the whole experience, with the transparent metal being able to provide a completely clear view of the outside world. If we are being realistic, this one’s not coming out in our lifetimes, however we can always hope for a ‘flying car 2022’ to flash by our screens every now and then.
SpaceShipTwo by Virgin Galactic
Casual space travel is a concept that has been in the hearts and minds of people since mankind first put its foot on the moon. SpaceShipTWO is a project that has been in the making for about 1.5 decades. Interestingly enough, in the very recent past, we have been able to see concepts of how the interior would look. A single look at the inside of the SpaceShipTwo reminds you of two things, the interior of an S-Class and faint memories of Star Trek. Combining two of these awesome things together, you get quite special a result. In fact, the test flights for this space aircraft are already planned out for the near future. Considering that commercial space travel has been dubbed as the gold rush of the 21st century, one can reasonably expect the people behind this aircraft to give it their best in order to make this a reality. This concept has been envisioned as being able to travel 60 miles into space, making the views from the windows of this aircraft quite special. Imagine the Instagram stories!
Explorer by Lufthansa Technik
The 2021 Monaco Yacht Show was dominated by the unveiling of the Lufthansa Technik. While it certainly dials back on the ‘crazy’ element which is so easily apparent in other aircraft on this list, the bonus is that this one is much more realistic and feasible to build in the near future. The concept of the private jet is that you get to fly from point A to Point B with the greatest luxury possible. Essentially, the jet is just an instrument that helps you to unlock an experience. The Lufthansa Technik is a dynamic reimagining of that concept, with the focus being on the jet itself rather than traversing the outside world. The jet becomes the experience itself. The massive Airbus A330 is being used as the base for this concept aircraft. Essentially, when the aircraft is completely grounded, it works as a five-star hotel that is able to provide its guest with every single amenity available. In doing that, it eclipses all the private aircraft that are already on the market, since they are always bounded by the fact that they have to provide that experience in the air. A flagship feature is the open-air terrace, where the successful CEOs and entrepreneurs of the world can enjoy a moment of relaxation in the sun or catch a cold night breeze in the summer. The ceiling of the jet is lined with screens in which the guests can enjoy any visuals that they want. They can have the video of a live aquarium or the jungle savannah, which all sounds like a beautiful, high-tech dream.