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Slideshow: The Airplanes Of The Future

This article is more than 10 years old.

NASA contracted with Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and Northrop Grumman to imagine aircraft that could replace the current fleet, which hasn't seen a significant makeover since the 1950s.

The assignment? Design a plane that can:

  • Fly 7,000 miles without refueling
  • Carry a payload of 50 to 100 thousand pounds worth of passengers or cargo
  • Be able to reach 80 percent the speed of sound - that's about 540 miles per hour
  • Be ready to fly by 2025

This segment aired on January 27, 2011. The audio for this segment is not available.

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