Weight Penalty:

Setting aside hypersonic flight, Boeing’s Darryl Davis says a supersonic platform is well within the realm of the possible by 2018. However, a supersonic, intercontinental platform would probably weigh two to 2.5 times as much as a subsonic platform, Davis noted. In aircraft, weight usually equates to cost. Davis said Boeing is looking at hybrid concepts of motherships and drones, or standoff sensors coupled with passive penetrators.