The HyperSoar is a hypersonic aircraft concept designed by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory engineer Preston Carter. It would be capable of flying at around Mach 12 (9200 MPH - 14700 km/h), allowing it to transit between any two points on the globe in under two hours. The HyperSoar is predicted to be a passenger plane capable of skipping outside the atmosphere to prevent it from overheating and burning up in the atmosphere. A trip from Chicago to Tokyo (10,123 kilometers) would take 18 skips, or 72 minutes. To travel from Los Angeles to New York (3,978 kilometers) would involve about 5 skips and take 35 minutes. Both flights require a total of about 2,450 kilometers and 27 minutes for take off and landing, meaning that it would take 8 minutes in the air for LA to NY and 45 for Chicago to Tokyo. According to plans, it would use hydrocarbon-based engines instead of hydrogen-based ones outside the atmosphere, as well as experimental jet engine technology. The project was expected to begin testing by 2010.
Although reports continued to reference the press releases (in 1998 and repeated in 2000), no development in the project was forthcoming. The Hypersoar concept was acquired from LLNL by DARPA, and in 2002 it was combined with the USAF X-41 Common Aero Vehicle to form the Falcon program.