NASA has unveiled recent updates to its Lockheed Martin-designed X-59 Quiet SuperSonic Technology jet and said that construction of the Mach 1.4-speed aircraft is halfway complete, Aviation International News reported Monday.
The X-59 QueSST supersonic aircraft entered the assembly phase in September 2020 and is scheduled to conduct its maiden flight in 2022.
Late last year, General Electric’s aviation business delivered its F414-GE-100 turbofan engine for X-59. Lockheed’s Skunk Works arm secured a $247.5M contract to build the supersonic aircraft.
According to NASA, X-59 construction work “made great strides” in the assembly of the jet’s wing section, flight deck and associated hardware.
The agency expects community testing of the aircraft to commence in 2024.