Boeing building plane that can fly five times the speed of sound

Wellington to London in three hours? Sign us up.
Wellington to London in three hours? Sign us up. Photo credit: Boeing

Aircraft giant Boeing has announced it is working on a super-speed, 'hypersonic' plane capable of travelling at a velocity five times the speed of sound.

The plans, released on Tuesday (local time) at an aviation conference in Georgia, US, say it could fly at up to 6500km/h.

Boeing chief hypersonic scientist Kevin Bowcutt said the plane will be revolutionary for global travel.

"We're excited about the potential of hypersonic technology to connect the world faster than ever before," he said.

The speed of the flight would make an Auckland to Los Angeles trip a cool hour and a half. Wellington to London? Just three hours.

The aircraft would be capable of carrying passengers at full speed, though Boeing said it would also be used commercially or for the military.

Dr Bowcutt said it is possible this design could become a reality within 20 to 30 years.