Very droll ContinentalEWR!
But on that point, what if the papers were to heavily report every airline incident, including the vast majority that are not safety related, like the OAE tail incident?
Wouldn't be much room for any other news.
While I'm certain there will not be a proper Mach 2 SST replacement for Concorde when retirement comes, I'm saddened by that fact.
In today's airliner market, efficiency, down to the last %, is king.
But what will it bring us? More Mach 0.85 aircraft, oh but you'll have on-board internet access.
Think for a moment of the great technical innovations all around us, that we take for granted. Today's vast, bloated army of accountants, lawyers, 'consultants' etc, all would have cautioned against taking the risks to make these things happen, muttered about poor cash-flow potential and not of seeing a market, worse that mantra of 'poor shareholder value'.
Concorde was a financial disaster for the two governments of the day, but think of all the billions pissed away in Military/Industrial Complex failed projects, the untold millions that always seem to be spent on consultation fees these days, for the all but the simplest projects, (even a new sports stadium for Wembley, or worse doing some rail modernization, hardly rocket science are they?)
Sure we should learn from previous mistakes, be mindful of the need to control costs, properly evaluate risks, (and these factors do rule out a mass market SST in the foreseeable future, but if more research into solving the problems had been done by now, would a viable SST be so far off?).
I just cannot help thinking that we are more concerned now with the process of doing things rather than actually doing them, and a self-perpetuating industry, which does not create anything, has built up as a result.
If airlines were prepared to pay for a niche aircraft, serving a niche market, accept that despite big improvements from Concordes time, environmental considerations would limit a 200-250 seat, 6,000 mile, Mach 2 SST, building on Concorde experience, to say a 150-200 aircraft production run.
It would be expensive to buy, would really be optimised for overwater long-haul, with just First and Business class. It would resemble a stretched, aerodynamic improved Concorde, but most of the development cost would be put into developing the necessary Variable-cycle or Mid tandem-fan engines. But many of today's more efficient production techniques, newer and lighter materials and avionics, would of course have their part to play.
Something like the aircraft described above, (and I'm thinking of the 1990's Aerospatiale Alliance and BAe AST proposals here), is the only way a foreseeable Concorde replacement could emerge not too long after BA and AF retire their current SSTs.
But it absolutely won't happen, very probably it would be far too risky both financially and maybe technically, even with the attractions for the trans-pacific market.
But the point is, we are never going to know if that really is the case.