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Subject: fx-discuss: Re: Claim Sorb judged false - surely it is true
From: "Michael C. Berch" <>
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Date: Mon, 8 Mar 2021 00:17:45 -0800
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 I did not expect the judgment of Sorb as false to be even remotely controversial.  While I agree that high-mach air transportation is (probably) zero, on the other hand so is high-mach suborbital transportation.  I have not seen *any* reference to high-mach suborbital transportation in any "standard industry surveys”, whether in the aerospace, transport, or economic fields or even in the popular news media.  

A couple of points:  

1. Nothing in the claim makes any reference to “paying customers”. There is no reason to believe that military flights would not qualify, so long as they meet the other criteria (transport of passengers, luggage or cargo). There are a few active types of fighter jets that are capable of M2.5, and senior officers who are qualified pilots do, in fact, fly from base to base on fighter aircraft on occasion in order to rack up the required number of hours to retain their type qualification. However, supersonic flying is highly restricted within the U.S., and I have seen no evidence that any of the officer-pilot “transport” flights ever exceed M2.5. (I have no information about Russia, China, or any other countries with supersonic aircraft.)

2. Sounding rockets are not transportation of passengers, luggage, or cargo from point to point, but instead are intended to reach certain altitudes for research, experimentation, and atmospheric and weather observation.  More to the point, the example given in a publication devoted to sounding rockets has a graph showing speed vs. time of a particular, presumably typical, sounding rocket, and the maximum speed shown in the graph appears to be approximately M1.3. 

<> PDF, page 4, "Figure 5: Mach number vs. time”

3. The sense of the claim, created in 1995, is that suborbital transportation of passengers, luggage, or cargo would become of some importance (or even minor importance) over the following 25 years. That completely failed to occur.  

Michael C. Berch 
FX #74 (niobium)

> On Mar 7, 2021, at 3:52 PM, chrisran.bma e-mail <> wrote:
> Hi 
> The claim sorb appears to have been judged as false. I believe it is true.
> The only flying aircraft that can do mach 2.5 are military and I would suggest not transport as in having a paying customer, which was suggested by claim creator.
> There are lots of sounding rocket used for research and these often are operated for fee paying researchers. I believe they often meet the required speed and don't use locally available gasses.
> So some suborbital exceeds zero high-mach air transportation.
> The claim should be discussed and considered rather than just being judged false.
> Regards
> Chris
> (crandles 7886)
> disclosure I had over +4000 holding 

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