Progress is a funny thing. Mankind had been racing past aviation milestones for generations. But it seemed like everything came to a sobering halt when the Concorde crashed in Paris ten years ago, killing 113 people and putting the brakes on supersonic commercial aviation. The trial over the incident is only now wrapping up in Paris, but the Concorde may not be grounded forever.
Mirroring the two national airlines that operated the Concorde for years – British Airways and Air France – a $22 million collaboration between Britain's Save Concorde Group (SCG) and France's Olympus 593 has been hard at work to get the supersonic jetliner back in the air. The joint team of engineers is now preparing for initial tests on the Rolls-Royce engines that could lead to the Concorde being cleared for flight once again. The target is to have the jet fly over the opening ceremonies for the 2012 Olympic Games in London.
But before you go rearranging your next vacation around the shorter transatlantic flight times the Concorde once afforded to those who could afford it, bear in mind that the goal is to have it operational in a "heritage capacity", indicating that while it may fly for demonstration purposes, it likely will never return to commercial aviation.