It is understood that a loud bang heard across London just after 4am on Sunday was caused by RAF Typhoon jets going supersonic.
At approx 0400z Royal Air Force Typhoons callsign 5EA26 & 5EA27 launched from RAF Coningsby to an unresponsive aircraft
— Mil Radar (@MIL_Radar) December 1, 2019
The loud bang heard throughout north London and surrounding areas was the result of a sonic boom from RAF planes. There is no cause for concern.
— Metropolitan Police (@metpoliceuk) December 1, 2019
Quick Reaction Alert, or QRA, is when the RAF scramble their fighter jets within minutes to meet or intercept aircraft which give cause for concern.
Lossiemouth generally covers the northern sector, while Coningsby provides QRA in the south, which includes looking after London and events such as the Olympics. Southern QRA transferred temporarily to RAF Northolt in West London during the Games to add to the mix of military assets ensuring their safety.
A sonic boom is a loud sound kind of like an explosion. It’s caused by shock waves created by any object that travels through the air faster than the speed of sound. Sonic booms create huge amounts of sound energy. When an object moves through the air, it makes pressure waves in front of and behind it.