But it will be years before that could become a reality. Shuford said the company is targeting an 8- to 10-year time frame, including a 4- to 5-year process for Federal Aviation Administration certification.
The aircraft “has the potential to have great societal and economic impact,” said Khosla Ventures founder Vinod Khosla in a written statement in the announcement on the Hermeus website.
The company said its board members include former Blue Origin president Rob Meyerson, former Lockheed Martin Skunk Works general manager Rob Weiss, former FAA associate administrator George Nield, former Northwest Airlines technical operations director Mitch Free and others.
Hermeus says its CEO and co-founder AJ Piplica, Shuford and the other co-founders previously worked at Atlanta-based Generation Orbit, where they helped develop a hypersonic flight research vehicle X-60A for the Air Force Research Laboratory through the Air Force Small Business Innovation Research program.
Piplica said in a written statement that Hermeus aims to “revolutionize the global transportation infrastructure” by “radically increasing the speed of travel over long distances.”