I'm new on Aviation SE, so allow me first to apologize for the hassle. I'm sure you get a lot of low quality questions from new users here, and I really don't want to contribute to that. However, I hope I can get something clarified.

I asked the question "Why are there no commercial supersonic flights at present?", and after a few hours it was closed as a duplicate of "Why did Air France retire Concorde?"

Now, I had certainly seen this question before asking (I always check for duplicates), and it's hard for me to understand why this is a duplicate. The old one is about a particular event related to Air France and a particular type of airplane in 2003. It was preceeded by a serious accident.

Now, in my question we are 13 years forward in time. I'm not even asking about that particular airplane. I'm asking about the current situation, while the old one was about a particular case, 13 years ago.

I'm sure many of the same reasons that made Concorde shut down are also reasons why there are no supersonic commercial flights today, but does that make it a duplicate? A good answer to my question could explain the overlap of reasons and use that to outline the current situation. For example, Airbus seems to be trying to develop a new supersonic jet. It would be interesting to know what is constraining their efforts, etc.

So, I hope I (and @DanieleProcida, who also requested it) can at least get an explanation for why this was seen as a duplicate. Are the requirements for duplicates here really that wide?

  • $\begingroup$ Airbus' aircraft would encounter similar issues as to what Concorde encountered, such as the high fuel prices and large amounts of fumes, so considering they haven't found much new technology to counter that, it would be a carbon copy of what happened with Concorde (possibly except the crash, of course). $\endgroup$
    – Atem
    Jun 12, 2016 at 10:17
  • $\begingroup$ @Atem I see. Well, does potential answers overlapping make differing questions duplicates? And why are we assuming the situation is the same now as in 2003? Do we not need to back that up with sources, elaboration, etc? (Lots may have changed, see this link for an example.) And can we really do that by tagging it as a duplicate, rather than explaining the similarities and differences in an actual answer? $\endgroup$
    – Fiksdal
    Jun 12, 2016 at 10:28
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @Atem I think there are a lot of presumptions in your statement. Concord was a very particular aircraft, and there is no guarantee that a more modern SST would have the exact same issue. In fact the reasoning behind not having an SST today may be entirely different altogether. $\endgroup$
    – Jae Carr
    Jun 12, 2016 at 16:10
  • $\begingroup$ @Fiksdal I think it's up to the asker to show specifically why why a modern aircraft is different. I agree that questions can be reopened because things have changed, but we can't reask every question that might be outdated. If it's not a duplicate, please explain what specific parts of an old answer are outdated. $\endgroup$ Jun 13, 2016 at 1:37

1 Answer 1


First, we have to acknowledge that in the meta stack exchange page you posted it advises, "If you ask a question similar to another question and it is likely to get the exact same answer, you have yourself a duplicate question." Here the answers are similar, so it's up the asker to explain specifically why it's different.

In general, if a question is substantially more general than a previous similar question, it's not a duplicate. Does the more general question invite answers that are non-trivially different than the answers in the original question? If so, it's in your best interest to acknowledge the original question and be clear and specific about what different answers you're looking for.

You aren't the first person to ask "why don't new aircraft have X" or "what is currently being designed," then when pointed to an article about historical considerations, claims it isn't a duplicate. Usually the question degrades into "well what's changed in the past decade or two." While such a question about recent changes would be acceptable, it's not nearly as good of a question as the original historical considerations one.

I don't think your question is a duplicate, but you should rephrase it so that it's clear why we shouldn't just copy and paste an answer from the duplicate and say "it's just like the Concorde, the speed of sound and sonic boom considerations hasn't changed." If you want different answers, make sure you ask the right question.

  • $\begingroup$ So, do you think this question is a duplicate, or not? $\endgroup$
    – Fiksdal
    Jun 12, 2016 at 17:09
  • $\begingroup$ @Fiksdal I rewrote the answer to clarify my stance. $\endgroup$ Jun 13, 2016 at 2:41
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks, buy my question is open now anyway, and I think changing it now would not be nice to the two people who have already answered. $\endgroup$
    – Fiksdal
    Jun 13, 2016 at 5:03

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