STILLWATER, Okla. (KFOR) – A group of Oklahoma State University students are setting their sights high with a goal of breaking the sound barrier with an unmanned aircraft.
The ambitious project named Project Boom includes nearly a dozen current and former engineering, architecture and technology students.
“We sat down and tried to figure out if it was even possible to build an unmanned aircraft capable of breaking the sound barrier,” said Cole Replogle, a recent OSU graduate and current University of Cambridge graduate student. “We found out that maybe it was, which was good enough for us, so we began moving forward with the project.”
They are part of a 200-member team spanning the globe that is working on designing, building, and piloting the aircraft.
“This is a project that I couldn’t let pass by,” Johnathan Burgess said. “Being a part of this project is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”
So far, the team has an engine and is currently working on getting materials to construct the airframe.
“A person could earn a Ph.D. studying the effects of the transonic regime (the sector of flight as speeds near the sound barrier) on all phases of flight,” Burgess said. “There are so many variables we’ll have to take into consideration the closer we get to breaking the sound barrier.”
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