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Old October 29th, 2005, 02:36 AM   #61
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Is the new B747 advanced is longer and wider? Kind of an extended version but has a better engine fit for a much longer haul flights? I love 747 as well. I'm just always skeptic about the newly introduced aircrafts, i'll probably try flying them if i have a choice after they are tested to be a reliable aircrafts in after 4 or 5 years use atleast.
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Old October 29th, 2005, 11:25 AM   #62
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The new 747 Adv. is an 'Advanced' version of the 747. As for a advanced version, it need a greater seating capacity, so the exterior is stretched, so it have more seats than the current plane, of 416 to 450 seats in three classes. The Advanced would have new engines, similar to those designed for the 787, plus other improvements such as a new interior and an enhanced flight deck.

so the things what changing for the 747-400ER.
- New Interior.
- New Flightdeck
(Maybe the same as the 787.)
- More seating capacity.
- Better preformance
- Lower costs / seat than a -400ER or A380-800.
- Greater range. (8,000 nautical miles, 14,816 km)
- Faster speed. (Cruising speed of 0.86 Mach)
- New engines. GEnx engines. (the same as used by the 787.)
- Large Stretch bij 11.7 feet.

The 747 Advanced passenger version: “stretched” in two bands for a total extension of 11.7 feet.

[The 747 Advanced Freighter would add 17.3 feet (5.3 meters) in length and 16% additional cargo volume.]

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Old October 29th, 2005, 04:23 PM   #63
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So cool!

BTW what is SIA?
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Old October 29th, 2005, 04:34 PM   #64
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Well done Boeing!
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Old October 29th, 2005, 06:21 PM   #65
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Originally Posted by Jo48
So cool!

BTW what is SIA?
SIA stands for Singapore International Airlines (or does SI is an abbreviated word of Singapore and then followed by A for Airlines)
"The community is now no longer about the people, but about shops and polluting motorcars. A sad thing that is to befall a town when it has lost its civic community and is transformed into a soulless shopping centre..." Awang Goneng, a Malaysian blogger.
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Old October 29th, 2005, 07:23 PM   #66
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Originally Posted by New York Yankee
... 14 for Air Canada...
It's actually 32 With options to make it around 90+aircrafts
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Old October 29th, 2005, 07:24 PM   #67
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Originally Posted by Monkey
Well done Boeing!
the orders are not confirmed yet. this is only a forecast.

but the talks with the airliners are going very well and we know for sure that these airliners going for boeing. but the only thing is that they are just not orderd yet.
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Old October 29th, 2005, 07:25 PM   #68
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Originally Posted by Bertez
It's actually 32 With options to make it around 90+aircrafts
a'ight! that's only better!
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Old October 29th, 2005, 07:38 PM   #69
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They're hiring right now. I hope they call me back. I'm one of thousands who were laid off in 2003 and 2004.
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Old October 29th, 2005, 10:44 PM   #70
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Bad for you. but it's a good forecast for you!
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Old December 30th, 2005, 01:08 PM   #71
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Boeing orders of 2006

How much orders does Boeing allready have for the year of 2006.

They've stopped the backlog of 2005 one week ago. but they have in this week some new orders.

What is the total of this time?

BTW, post here the orders for boeing in the new year of 2006.
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Old December 30th, 2005, 04:39 PM   #72
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There's already a thread about that.
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Old December 31st, 2005, 12:36 AM   #73
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I know, but this is about the orders placed this week, which are counting allready for the backlog of 2006,
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Old April 7th, 2006, 12:19 AM   #74
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Boeing's first-quarter jet deliveries climb 40 percent

Boeing's first-quarter jet deliveries climb 40 percent

Bloomberg News

Boeing said first-quarter airliner deliveries climbed 40 percent, helped by demand from low-cost and international carriers.

Shipments of commercial jets last quarter rose to 98, the jet maker said in a statement today. That's up from 70 a year earlier.

Seventy two deliveries were for Boeing's 737 model popular with discount airlines such as Southwest Airlines and Ryanair Holdings.

The deliveries included 17 of the company's more profitable 777 wide-body jets, or 17 percent of the total, compared with eight in last year's first quarter, or 11 percent.

Boeing expects to deliver 395 planes this year. Boeing and rival Airbus are benefiting as airlines worldwide order more fuel-efficient new jets to meet rising demand for air-travel in India and China.

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Old September 5th, 2007, 11:12 AM   #75
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Boeing's Answer to the Airbus Challenge

How Boeing Got Going.
10 September 2007

The 787 forced the firm to rethink its manufacturing process.

It was the jet that Boeing didn't build that averted what could have become one of the worst crash landings in the company's 91-year history--and cleared Boeing to conquer the skies again. In October 2002, executives of the aircraft manufacturer met with a group of global airline representatives at a conference center on the Seattle waterfront. The executives were trying desperately to figure out what to build next to hold off a soaring Airbus. One Boeing boss drew a graph on a whiteboard, the axes being cruising range and passenger numbers. Then he asked the airline representatives to locate their ideal position on the graph.

The distribution of the data points showed the company that airlines favored efficiency over speed--the exact opposite of what Boeing was thinking. Two months later, Boeing ditched plans for a high-speed, high-cost jetliner to embark on a new program, the 7E7--E for efficiency--that has since changed global aviation and airframe manufacturing. Fast-forward five years to the prize: the 787 Dreamliner--a midrange cruiser that has already logged 47 clients for 684 jet orders, worth $114 billion in sales.

The 787, made in a completely new system, has also remade Boeing. The top-down, we-know-everything assembler had to evolve into a more cooperative, power-sharing systems integrator. Opening its eyes and ears to client partners is one lesson that Boeing (now based in Chicago) has learned. And it wasn't an easy one. Not long ago, the company was under fire for losing ground to Airbus, based in Toulouse, France, the competitor that had just primed its ascendancy by investing $10 billion in a modern-day Spruce Goose, the 555-seat A380. In 2003 a paper by two professors at the State University of New York at Buffalo even suggested that Boeing would be out of the jetliner business by 2013--the year the largest 787 model, the 787-10, is now set to launch. The 787-8 will fly from Paine Field in Everett, Wash., later this month to begin the shortest flight-test schedule in the company's history.

"There is an arsenal of lessons learned," said Scott Strode, Boeing's vice president of airplane development and production for the 787, during the airplane's July premiere in Seattle. "There's room to improve, but that will not change the fundamental belief that distribution and sharing is a good thing."

That includes sharing the jet's risks by getting more partner manufacturers worldwide to do the heavy lifting and take exposure for the $10 billion project onto their books. Boeing has taken risks with new materials and technologies and fashioned the Dreamliner into something that beleaguered airlines and their passengers might actually enjoy. Analysts say the 787 might be the first plane that passengers actually choose to fly because of new interior amenities, such as more pressurization, more humidity, bigger windows, more room as well as a lower carbon footprint per seat. That hits a sweet spot with airlines when coupled with savings in operations and maintenance costs.

Airbus, which was formed as a consortium of manufacturers, has long been a company that thrived on a shared approach, although most of what it is sharing now is pain. The company's woes--ranging from 10,000 announced layoffs this past spring to the two-year production delays (costing an additional $3 billion) of the A380 have wiped out the lead it had on Boeing. Total orders so far this year show Boeing with 701, 13 more than Airbus. In the weeks following the highly publicized 787 rollout on July 8, Boeing posted its largest quarterly profit in nearly four years, at $1.1 billion. And for the first time, its commercial-airplane unit earned more than its defense side; half-year revenues increased 15%, to $16.3 billion, with a 13% increase on airplane deliveries over 2006 (Defense revenues increased 5%, to $15.7 billion.) Boeing's backlog of orders increased 47%, to a record $208 billion, more than seven times the unit's 2006 revenues.

Clearly, Boeing learned by asking. "They went out there and had to come up with a winner," says Ray Neidl, U.S. director of Calyon Securities. "That aircraft would have to be a mainstay in the international, wide-bodied, long-distance competition for years to come." The lesson was kicked off by Airbus' announcement of the giant A380 in 2000, when it was still called the A3XX program. Boeing initially parried with plans for the Sonic Cruiser, to travel nearly the speed of sound, or 20% faster than the Mach 0.85 of conventional jets. "It would have been great for North American, European and Asian markets, but it would have entailed higher operating costs and higher fuel burn," says Neidl. Airlines, racked by higher fuel costs, needed relief. So the company changed course to what is now a 20% more fuel-efficient jet (compared to a 767-300ER), the 787--or what Boeing nicknamed the "son of the Sonic Cruiser."

Boeing is planning to shift the emphasis on speed to the production line. It took a page from lean manufacturing to help manage its restructured partner base and outsourcing of parts. The company has pushed outsourcing to new levels, about 70% of the aircraft. (Boeing and Airbus both averaged about 50% on previous jets.) The change in supply management has increased competition among suppliers and subcontractors, which will allow Boeing to speed up final assembly of the 787. The goal is three days, in contrast to 14 days for the 777. Boeing hopes to produce up to 16 aircraft a month, which would mean exceeding the 112 planned deliveries in 2008 and 2009

As chief of the 787 program, Mike Bair has always had a firm grip on the Dreamliner's development, but that's because he knows when to let go. Bair says Boeing made as significant a change in how it approached systems, avionics and hydraulics as it did in giving more responsibility to its high-cost partner manufacturers such as Kawasaki Heavy Industries of Japan and Italy's Alenia/ Vought Aircraft Industries. For example, the specification control document, which explains how to build an electrical-distribution system, was about 2,500 pages for the 777. "[Partners] had to figure out 2,500 pages of stuff, and we monitored them applying 2,500 pages of stuff," says Bair.

On the 787, the equivalent assignment was 25 pages. "For high-level requirements, you go design it," says Blair. "We're not going to micromanage how you do it." Bair says this accomplishes three things: partners can show their expertise; there is no duplication of work; and innovation can flourish where "in the past it was our way or no way." He doesn't consider these new methods revolutionary."It's just that we've never done it to this degree before," he says.

Boeing hired North Carolina--based New Breed Logistics to manage the lightly tooled final assembly of the major composite parts coming in to Boeing's Everett plant from as far away as Italy, Japan and Australia. To Richard Aboulafia, vice president of analysis for Teal Group, an aerospace and defense consultancy, the 787's production process qualifies it as the iPod of aerospace--essentially not only the new face of aviation but of American manufacturing as well. "Look at your iPod. Where was it built? Who the hell cares? That's not where the value is," he says. "You design, you integrate, you sell, you support, you finance. There's a lot to be said for putting it together under your roof, but leave bending metal or pouring plastic to someone else."

Bair says the 787 has been a more complicated management process because Boeing doesn't have day-to-day inside control but says the diversity of cultural perspective and expertise has strengthened the team. Also playing in Boeing's game: financiers and bankers. What do bankers know about building aircraft? "They gave us some great advice in terms of configuration in the airplane, going to a more standard aircraft and having the ability to switch engine manufacturers," says Randy Tinseth, vice president of marketing. The payoff: higher residual value of the airplane. Aboulafia says getting that kind of endorsement probably took a lot of hand holding and diplomacy, but the lesson is to get out there with the best business case you can offer: "Any doubts that the partners have are gone, of course, because this is the most successful launch in the history of any aircraft."

Technically, a key selling point is the use of carbon-fiber composites in 50% of the Dreamliner by weight (80% by volume), adding to the new jet's reputation as a "game changer." Carbon-reinforced plastic in places such as the wings, fuselage and floorboards not only makes the aircraft lighter--and reduces fuel consumption--but also provides the opportunity to change systems integration, rework maintenance programs, overhaul cabin interiors and upgrade aerodynamic performance. Boeing is working with the world's largest producer of carbon fiber, Tokyo-based Toray Industries, which is still fine-tuning its mass production (this is the first large-scale work Toray has done) and tooling. But with the use of more carbon-fiber composites in aircraft--the A350 will also be 50%--Boeing is on top of the trend.

In the $60 billion duopoly of airplane manufacture, however, the question is: For how long? The two companies enjoy one of the more entertaining rivalries in business, never passing on an opportunity to slag each other's products. While many clients think the 787 is the best solution for the increasing demand in the point-to-point market, for instance, Airbus knocks the 787-8 as too small. Tinseth says Boeing initially wanted to make the 787 larger, but airlines talked the company out of it, trading size for range, so the new aircraft could replace the 767s in their fleets. "We still believe there's a market for big airplanes. It's just not as big as [Airbus] thinks it is," says Tinseth.

Airbus' counterstroke to the Dreamliner is a bigger (average 314 seats), more technologically advanced, fuel-efficient A350, an "Xtra Wide-Body" plane planned for rollout in 2013 The goal is to compete with the Dreamliner for new business while rendering the economics of Boeing's transoceanic 777 obsolete. Boeing is already headed for a larger plane, the 787-10, a potential 320-seater, primarily because of demand from airlines like Dubai-based Emirates and Australia's Qantas Airways.

To Airbus, the message of Boeing's 787-10 is clear: "The fact that the airplane is on the drawing board today is an accolade to the competitive threat from the A350-1000," says Chris Jones, vice president of marketing for Airbus. Qantas has placed 65 firm orders for the 787 and has the option of 20 more. But an Emirates spokeswoman says the airline is still undecided over the 787 or the A350. Emirates is the largest purchaser of the A380, at 55 orders.

Boeing says it isn't sweating the A350. First, it has a five-year technology lead over the A350-900. "When all the dust settles, the important thing is that we keep progressing," says Bair. "They will figure it out, but we will be five and six years into knowing what we know and be that much better at it." And the 47-strong customer base that Boeing has for the 787 shows validation of the company's vision and its intent to dislodge Airbus' grip on the medium-range market. Boeing is trying to make the 787 easier to buy too. It offers airlines the choice of two engines, made by either GE or Rolls-Royce. Airbus offers only a customized Rolls-Royce Trent engine because the engines GE offered to A350 customers fit only two of the three versions. GE won't make an engine for the A350-1000 to compete with the one it has developed for the 777.

The spacing between rollouts of its 787 models also gives Boeing a slight advantage. Boeing plans to have about two to three years between its 787-8, 787-9 and 787-10, in order to have time to work out any bugs that might arise during test flights. But Airbus will have only one year between its 350-900, 350-800 and 350-1000 launches, meaning it has to be closer to flawless, a status it clearly hasn't reached with the A380.

Some Airbus watchers blame the A380--with 165 orders--for hogging valuable resources and causing delays in the A350 schedule. The two planes stand for Airbus' somewhat divergent views on how to meet the needs of travelers as all aspects of flying grow. Critics say the company overestimated the double-decker market--and overcommitted with its investment of $16 billion. On Oct. 15, the A380 will be delivered to launch customer Singapore Airlines after more than a year's delay. "Airbus was thinking that people wanted massive airplanes to go between the continents," says Neidl. "What's wrong with that is that they don't." The A380 might work for flights to hubs such as London's Heathrow but probably not for intermediate cities, where passengers prefer direct service. And while seat-mile costs can be reduced for an airline with such an aircraft, too many seats to fill can erode yields.

Analyst Aboulafia offers this blunt assessment: "It's probably the single biggest mistake in aviation history. Even if the development program weren't technically botched, you still have the problem that it's just the wrong plane." Boeing expects to deliver its revamped 747-8 in 2010, costing about $4 billion to develop and probably priced at about $292 million, vs. about $319 million for the competing A380.

Demand for aircraft is now. "This is the first simultaneous civil and military upturn I've seen in 20 years," says Aboulafia. "And the angle of that upturn is very steep." The International Air Transport Association predicts that 2007 will be the first profitable year for airlines since 2000 True, net profit of about $5 billion is paltry at best in a $470 billion industry, but it puts the airlines in a buying mood. Boeing is sold out for both 2007 and 2008 and expects to deliver 445 airplanes this year and 520 next year.

Want to buy a Dreamliner? Sorry, production is spoken for until 2015--underlining the company's need for a speedy new production line, since it could sell more if it could make more. Not long ago, it seemed as if Boeing couldn't make anything. Tim Clark, president of Emirates, said in January 2005, "Boeing has struggled with the development work needed to take the company into the 21st century." Boeing has now arrived, and so will the 787--the first Dreamliner goes to All Nippon Airways in May. Sure, Boeing's CEO, Jim McNerney, worries about the 787 every day. "Only the paranoid survive when you are doing these airplane programs," he has said. Yet it looks as if Boeing, by letting go of some of the details and focusing on the big picture, has eased its ride to the top.

Boeing 787-8 (first flight: 2008)
ENGINES: GEnx (GE); Trent 1000 (Rolls-Royce)
PASSENGER CAPACITY: 210 to 250 seats
RANGE: up to 8,200 nautical miles
FUEL CONSUMPTION: 20% less than 767-300ER
LIST PRICE: $157 million to $167 million
ORDERS: 525, worth about $82.4 billion
MATERIALS: 50% composites; 20% aluminum; 15% titanium, 10% steel; 5% other

Airbus 350-800 (due 2014)
ENGINES: Trent XWB (Rolls-Royce)
RANGE: 8,300 nautical miles
FUEL CONSUMPTION: 25% less than 777-300ER
LIST PRICE: $199.3 million
ORDERS: 109, worth about $21.7 billion
MATERIALS: 52% composites; 20% aluminum; 14% titanium; 7% steel; 7% other
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Old March 22nd, 2010, 06:03 PM   #76
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Boeing's Albaugh: 'in 2011 we'll deliver more airplanes' than Airbus

Boeing's Albaugh: 'in 2011 we'll deliver more airplanes' than Airbus

Boeing will bring its third 787 Dreamliner into service (making it the fourth to fly) next Sunday, add two 747-8 Freighters to the flight-test program this month, decide later this year on increasing the 737 production rate and re-engining the single-aisle moneymaker and deliver more airplanes than airbus in 2011, Boeing Commercial Airplanes President and Chief Executive Jim Albaugh said Tuesday morning in a Webcast talk at the J.P. Morgan Aviation, Transportation & Defense Conference.

Here are more details.

On the 787:

  • "We've got a very aggressive flight-test program in front of us. We're going to have six airplanes flying. We have to fly those airplanes around 90 hours a week. ... So far it's progressing well."
  • "Three are flying right now we've got a fourth airplane coming into service next Sunday, and then we've got two others that are going to come in in the second quarter."
  • "So far we've done over 100 stalls. We've had a number of engine outs. We've been able to do an autoland. We're about 40 percent through flutter tests and the things solid as a rock. The other day we had it into a dive, we were going Mach .97. ... We've had it up to 43,000 feet and it remained pressurized at 6,000 feet."
  • "Right now we've got a month, month and a half of contingency in the program against the entry into service date later this fall, early next winter, but I want more contingency. We're working very hard to improve the efficiency of the test program, which means do more test points per flight. And we're also trying to improve the turnaround of the airplane so we can get more hours in the air with the six airplanes we're going to have."
  • And have to ramp up production rate. "Right now we're at two (a month). We're going to go to two and a half per month in August and by 2013 we need to get up to 10 a month. Let me put that in perspective. The largest number of widebody airplanes we've manufactured was 92 and those are 747s back in 1970. ... We've drilled down to all the manufacturing cells within our first-, second-, third- and fourth-level suppliers. We're making sure that they have to the tools, the people, the processes and they have conservative learning curves in place, and we're going to make darned sure we can meet the commitments that we've made relative to deliveries."
  • Profitability -- "We've made a significant investment in this airplane and, while it's profitable, it's not profitable enough to justify the kind of investment that we've made. So we're working very hard to improve the productivity in our factory. We're working very hard to get all the design changes done. We're working very hard with our subcontractors to add value engineering into what they do and also to compress their cycle time and generate the kind of earnings that justify the kind of investment that we've made."
  • "We get more confident every day that we're going to be able to achieve the kind of guarantees we gave our customers relative to the performance of the airplane."
  • "We expect to have our first delivery out of Charleston in the first quarter of 2012."
  • "We've seen a 50 percent reduction in the factory costs in final assembly in the last five airplanes as compared with the previous five airplanes and we're also seeing some reduced cycle times and improved quality and reduced costs coming out of our supply chain."
On the 737:

  • "We're taking a hard look at what we want to do with the rate. Right now we are at 31 and a half airplanes per month and we will make a decision some time this summer about increasing that rate. We are sold out in 2011. We are over committed in 2012. We think we're coming back into a positive cycle in the marketplace. There were some sales we could have made last year that we didn't because we thought if we waited we could sell airplanes for more. I think that was a prudent thing for us to do."
  • "You project out another five or six years and you're going to see a crowded marketplace. We are not going to be in a duopoly in seven or eight years and certainly not in 10 or 15 years."
  • "If you re-engine, what you want to make sure of is you're not a me-too airplane. ... We want to make sure, if we do re-engine, that we have an airplane that enjoys a 5, 6, 7 percent efficiency or value capability above the competition."
  • "If we make a decision not to re-engine, we won't make a decision to do a new airplane."
  • "We are right now talking to all three engine manufacturers. We think they all will provide improvement in efficiency of about 10 to 15 percent."
  • "We also are looking at how we can take some of the technologies that we developed on the 787 and scale that down to the 737."
  • Boeing will decide on re-engining "probably toward the end of the year."
On competition:

  • "We're second place in a duopoly. That means you're in last place, and I don't want to be in last place. I want to be in first place. And we're going to have some real challenges from the Canadians, the Brazilians, the Japanese, the Chinese, the Russians, and we need to make sure that we're doing the things today to keep us competitive in the future. and that means continuing to do what the Boeing Company has always done over the years and that is to push technology and to take risks. I can tell you the risks will be more prudent than maybe some of the risks we took in the past, but we understand we have to deliver an airplane that has more value than the competition. There's no question in my mind that some of these (new competitors') airplanes will be good airplanes."
  • "I want to reestablish the market leadership. And my view is that in 2011 we'll deliver more airplanes than the competitor, but I want to do that for a lot of years to come going forward."
  • "I think one of our strategic decisions will be how do we cooperate with the Chinese, or do we decide we want to compete against them."
On the 747-8:

  • "We've flown this airplane about eight times, 33 hours of flight time on it."
  • "We have a third airplane that's coming on line on the 15th of this month and we have another airplane coming online on the 17th."
  • Working on "what do we do to make this a more profitable program than it is today. Relative to the guarantees, we've got the range. ... We've got the payload. And we've got some things to work in the factory to get this thing up to rate."
On 777 production rate:

  • "We're looking very hard at a rate increase there as well, and we'll make a decision some time in April. ... If we were to make an announcement in April we would actually go up in rate in 2011. Obviously we don't want to go up in rate and then have to come back down. ... We need to feel very, very confident that we can go to the six or seven airplanes (a month), whatever we might decide to do and we need to be able to stay there for years to come."
  • "We anticipate to have a couple of orders in the near term on 777. ... We have people coming back into the market to buy this airplane."
  • "The A350's going to be a good airplane and certainly it will compete against the 777, we understand that. But the A350-1000, you pick a day, a year that it will be delivered. We think we've got a lot of good years of production on the 777-300ER left. We've asked Lars Andersen to come in and make that airplane more efficient than it is today, so it does compete very well against the A350-1000."
On the economic and orders outlook:

  • "Since 2005 we've had some 4,250 orders. Right now we've got a backlog of 3,400 airplanes. But last year we had net orders of only 142. I think the good news is we're starting to see traffic come back. We think traffic will be at 2208 levels this year. ... We think we'll see the airlines come back into the market in 2012."
On his reorganization efforts:

  • "What I wanted to do was make sure that we were focused on execution, we were focused on functional excellence and we were also focused on growth."
  • Created new engineering positions -- "The idea here is to make sure that they provide the kind of oversight to development programs to ensure we don't have some of the kinds of issues that we had on the 787 program in the future."
  • "I looked around Boeing Commercial and I wondered where the graybeards were, where were the icons of the Boeing Company and, unfortunately, many of these people had retired, and I brought seven back."
  • "We also didn't have a program-management function in place."
  • "We also wanted to make sure we were more focused in terms of business development."
On customer relationships:

  • "One thing I've been impressed with as I've traveled around and talked to customers is the great relationships that we have and the relationships that have been built over the last five, six decades. We have some rebuilding to do because we've disappointed them. Many would say that we've impacted their business plans. We don't want to disappoint them going forward."
On the Air Force's aerial refueling tanker competition:

  • "It's the longest running soap opera since Days of our Lives. I'm not sure we've seen the last episode."
Source: http://blog.seattlepi.com/aerospace/archives/197096.asp
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Old August 9th, 2010, 07:28 PM   #77
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BOEING | General News & Discussion

I figured we should use one thread for all Boeing related news and discussions, similar to the Airbus thread, that do not warrant a new thread instead of new threads for every piece of news.

Boeing's workhorse 737 must confront new competitors

The hottest buzz around the Farnborough Air Show near London will be the push by Canada's Bombardier to break the longtime stranglehold that Airbus and Boeing have on the vital single-aisle, or narrow-body, jet market.The 737 narrow-body is the best-selling Boeing jet ever, and a workhorse airliner on domestic routes in the U.S. and overseas.
But expected orders at the show for Bombardier's new narrow-body CSeries jet, which competes directly against the Boeing 737-700 as well as the Airbus A319, would signal the beginnings of a significant challenge.Both Boeing and Airbus face a tough strategic decision: how to handle the immediate threat from the CSeries and, further out, the proposed Chinese C919 and Russian MS-21 narrow-bodies, all powered by new, highly efficient engines.
The 737 is a cash cow for Boeing, which has said it will decide this year whether to put a new engine on the 737 or design an all-new replacement jet. That decision will affect the long-term future of 10,000 workers in Renton who produce almost 400 of the jets a year.
Bombardier's forthcoming plane has already shocked the aviation world with its first U.S. order: In February Indianapolis-based Republic Airways, until then an Airbus customer, ordered 40 CSeries jets. "If the CSeries gathers steam, Airbus and Boeing need to move faster than they have been," said Richard Aboulafia, aviation analyst with the Teal Group. "The market is speaking quite loudly. That's the exciting aspect of Farnborough. It might get a lot louder."
"It comes down to the great narrow-body war," he said.
The key CSeries selling point is its new-generation Pratt & Whitney engines that promise about 15 percent better fuel efficiency than the engines on the 737. For airlines, that would mean enormous savings. The plane is scheduled to enter service in 2013.

What will Southwest do?

As existing 737 airline customers assess the future, none is more important to Boeing than Southwest Airlines. It has 545 of the jets in its fleet and will need to replace about 200 of its older models in the next decade.
"We need new economics," said Mike Van de Ven, Southwest's chief operating officer. "We're indifferent whether that's a new airplane or a re-engined airplane."

But Van de Ven ruled out waiting for some later, more revolutionary engine technology. "Doing nothing until 2025 is not an option," he said. "We want some options in the near term." Van de Ven said he's interested in any solution using the "engines ready for service now" — including the Pratt & Whitney engine — that deliver the fuel efficiency Southwest needs.
So could Southwest eventually consider an order for the CSeries? Van de Ven said he has talked to Bombardier, but he expresses confidence in the carrier's close 39-year relationship with Boeing. "Boeing is in the business to get the most competitive narrow-body in the marketplace," he said. "We want that. I feel like their needs and our needs are very tightly aligned."

Analyst Aboulafia thinks the pressure on Boeing to match the fuel efficiency of the CSeries sooner rather than later inevitably will lead to the quicker alternative, mounting a new engine on the existing 737.

"I don't see any other Boeing technologies that would be compelling in the next five years," he said. "And I don't see the airlines patiently waiting longer than a few years."

Airbus is adding to the pressure. A person familiar with the European plane-maker's plans said Airbus will not formally launch a new engine option for its A320 narrow-body family at Farnborough. But it is closer than Boeing to pulling the trigger on re-engining and has lined up several airlines ready to buy.

Re-engining is not trivial. Boeing would likely have to spend around $1 billion to strengthen the 737 wing and attachment points for the heavier new engines. The landing gear would also need to be modified. Still, developing a whole new airplane could cost 10 times as much.

High stakes for jobs here

Rogers Weed, director of Washington state's Commerce Department, said Boeing's decision is freighted with implications for the state as well as the company. Choosing to add a new engine could preserve what Boeing has in Renton for years to come.

But if Boeing opts to replace the 737 with a new plane, Washington will have to persuade the company to do final assembly here. Which way will Boeing go? In the narrow-body war, the generals try not to give away their strategic thinking. Company executives have publicly played down the benefits airlines could expect from re-engining the 737 and have been quietly dismissive of the CSeries threat.

Randy Tinseth, Boeing Commercial Airplanes marketing vice president, said the CSeries's maximum capacity of 149 passengers gives it a limited market. Boeing's 737 family stretches from 100 seats to just over 200. The CSeries "will have a niche in the market, but how big?" said veteran Boeing engineer Joe Sutter, who played a lead role in developing the original 737.

While Aboulafia agrees, he still thinks the CSeries could sell well enough to produce 50 a year. And if Boeing and Airbus don't opt for new engines, Bombardier could find a market for more like 100 a year, he said. "Why not buy a niche aircraft with significantly better operating costs?" Aboulafia asked.

Farnborough will reveal the level of market interest.

Qatar is expected to announce a CSeries order. If a Chinese airline also orders the jet, as expected, that'll give Bombardier's plane an entry into what most observers see as the key market in the coming decades. Winning a CSeries order from a major jet-leasing company would be an enormous boost for Bombardier, showing that third-party financiers have confidence in its success. One tantalizing possibility is an order from Air Lease Corp, the startup headed by former International Lease Finance Corp. boss and market-maker Steven Udvar-Hazy.

Eyes on China, Russia

Meanwhile, though the proposed Chinese C919 narrow-body jet family is in early development, Boeing continues to talk up that threat as greater than the CSeries.

"Out in the 2015-2020 time frame, we see the C919 coming into the market and we expect them to sell," Tinseth said.

Irkut, the Russian company offering the MS-21 narrow-body jet family, will display a mock-up cabin at the air show. Aviation analyst Adam Pilarski, of consulting firm Avitas, regards both the Chinese and Russian jets as serious competitors. The Chinese and Russians have selected Western avionics suppliers and both planes feature next-generation, fuel-efficient engines similar to the CSeries. But each project still has many details undecided.

"The Russians and the Chinese themselves don't know that much yet," Pilarski said. "The governments decided something big will happen and the attitude is, 'We don't yet know 100 percent how to do it, but we will do it.' "' Pilarski said the first planes produced likely won't match those of Boeing and Airbus, but both China and Russia will be persistent.

"The first planes that come out will not be great (but) the first 737s were not that great," he said. "The Chinese and the Russians want this to be a big industry for them," Pilarski added. "If they decide that, it will happen." He foresees the C919 and MS-21 selling mainly in their home market as cheaper, serviceable jets.

In contrast, he said, Boeing and Airbus will have to aim higher and add value. If Boeing chooses to go for an all-new 737 replacement, Pilarski said, one speculation is that it might not be a narrow-body at all, but a radical short twin-aisle design. "Technology does not sell airplanes," said Sutter, the still-vigorous 89-year-old who now advises Boeing Commercial Airplanes Chief Jim Albaugh on strategy. "The guy who comes up with the right airplane for the market is going to get the biggest share of the pie."

That's why, faced with the threats ahead from newcomers, Boeing's decision on the future for its 737-size jets is crucial. It cannot risk doing nothing. "That's probably right," said Sutter. "It's interesting to watch the youngsters fight with that problem. There's going to be a lot of discussion at Farnborough."


Last edited by KB; August 9th, 2010 at 07:39 PM.
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Old August 9th, 2010, 07:50 PM   #78
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US FAA orders fixes in Boeing 747s

Concerned about potentially hazardous takeoff problems affecting many of the largest Boeing 747 airliners, U.S. air-safety regulators have proposed mandatory fixes to ensure the jumbo jets will climb properly.

The Federal Aviation Administration last week moved to require certain engine-related wiring changes to Boeing 747-400 models. The fixes, according to the agency, are necessary to avoid potentially dangerous retraction of flaps, or panels that deploy from the wings to provide extra lift during takeoffs.

The FAA and manufacturer Boeing Co. discovered that during takeoffs, sensors on a piece of equipment called thrust-reversers can prompt some leading-edge flaps to retract without pilot commands. Thrust-reversers are designed to muffle or redirect air coming out of the engine, but they are supposed to be deployed only after touchdown.

Retracting flaps during critical early phases of flight "could result in reduced climb performance and consequent collision with terrain and obstacles," according to the FAA.

The agency's proposed directive, issued last week, covers nearly 100 Boeing 747s flown by U.S. carriers and equipped with engines manufactured by both General Electric Co. and the Pratt & Whitney unit of United Technologies Corp. Many more planes flown by foreign carriers eventually will be covered by similar directives expected to be issued by air-safety regulators in Europe and elsewhere. The goal is to prevent small movements of thrust-reverser parts during takeoffs from triggering flap retractions.

A Boeing spokeswoman said Sunday that the company itself issued service bulletins earlier this year urging airlines to voluntarily make the modifications. But only the FAA can mandate U.S. carriers to make such fixes.

U.S. aviation regulators previously ordered similar fixes to Boeing 747-400 jets equipped with engines manufactured by Rolls-Royce PLC. Those modifications were mandated to become effective immediately because the planes with Rolls-Royce engines appeared especially prone to flap retractions.

In one incident, according to the FAA, the pilots of one airline it didn't identify reported receiving stall warnings on a Boeing 747-400 jetliner shortly after takeoff when the leading edge flaps retracted on their own, and again when the flaps were redeployed automatically. The incident involved a Rolls-Royce engine, and the FAA didn't provide a date.

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Old August 9th, 2010, 08:04 PM   #79
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Boeing Sugar Volt looks to the skies in the year 2035

By Noel McKeegan
11:42 August 2, 2010

Boeing SUGAR Volt concept design (Image: NASA/The Boeing Company)

Although the theme of AirVenture 2010 was "Salute to Veterans," the future of air travel was also brought to the fore – and that means electric airplanes. The focus on e-aviation culminated in the World Symposium of Electric Aircraft last Friday and among the many interesting designs discussed was Boeing's Subsonic Ultra Green Aircraft Research (SUGAR) Volt concept. Borne out of the same NASA research program that gave birth to MIT's D “double bubble” concept, the SUGAR Volt is a twin-engine aircraft design notable for its trussed, elongated wings and electric battery gas turbine hybrid propulsion system – a system designed to reduce fuel burn by more than 70 percent and total energy use by 55 percent. Could this be the future shape of commercial air transportation?

The SUGAR Volt (a choice of name that Chevrolet might have something to say about) is envisioned as running on either fuel or electricity and could include hinges in the wing design so that they could be folded when on the ground. It is designed to fly at Mach 0.79, carry 154 passengers over a range of 3,500 nautical miles and achieve shorter takeoff distance.

A second Boeing-led design known as Icon II was also put forward in the NASA research program. This concept uses a split tail design to achieve supersonic flight over land with reduced fuel burn and noise. Icon II could carry The Icon II concept can carry 120 passengers, cruise at Mach 1.6 to Mach 1.8 and achieve a range of about 5,000 nautical miles.

The goals of the NASA supersonic research program included a 71-decibel reduction below current Federal Aviation Administration noise standards, a greater than 75 percent reduction in nitrogen oxide emissions, a greater than 70 percent reduction in fuel burn performance and reduced air traffic congestion and delays at airports.

The program was targeted at designs that could be feasible in the 2030-2035 time frame. It concluded in April and further research announcements are expected.

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Old August 13th, 2010, 02:58 PM   #80
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Air India Compensation Claims For Boeing 787 Delays Unrealistic


Boeing’s flagship 787 is delayed – we all know it. Air India’s claim for compensation, while just, has another element here – the airline, like most other Indian carriers, is a poorly run entity. Blame Boeing all you like, the real fault lies at Air India’s door.


There isn’t a 787 customer who couldn’t have made (or saved) millions had the airplane arrived into their fleets on time. As it is, the 787 is and has been delayed and there’s no changing that fact. Since the Air India merger with Indian Airlines in 2007, the newly formed National Aviation Company of India Limited (NACIL) has struggled to either coalesce the two firms together and has been slow to change its business in the wake of falling business and high yield traffic.

After placing the biggest order in the history of Indian aviation in late 2005, Air India has inducted a number of 777-200LR and 777-300ERs and has been negotiating with Boeing to cancel the last three 777-300ERs it has on order.

Air India claims the 787s could have saved them money yet they have not deployed the 777-200LRs or 777-300ERs, arguably the most efficient widebody jets in service today, effectively enough to reap the rewards of their multi-billion dollar investments. There is nothing to suggest the 787s would have been any better when yield attrition would have eroded all the fuel burn savings the airplane has.

India has been struggling to cope with massive overcapacity on its domestic network and its airlines are simply too laden with red tape, political interference and apathy to move towards efficient operations and compete against foreign airlines coming into the country. If Air India gets anywhere near the reported $840m in damages they seek, it serves only to highlight how badly run the airline is – granted, not as bad as Kingfisher Airlines who can’t even afford to fuel their jets, but still bad nonetheless.

And to think, Air India still has another three 777-300ERs to be delivered – there are airlines like Emirates who can’t get enough of these fuel efficient airplanes and here we have Air India wanting to cancel orders yet with the same tongue complain about how badly it has been affected by the absence of the 787.

The irony of this will not be lost on Boeing.

Many airlines are entitled to claim for the delays on the 787, but to accuse Boeing of being somehow responsible (directly or indirectly) for any business woes just goes to show the lengths many will go so that they can avoid being blamed for their own inadequacies.

Boeing has admitted time and again it has gotten things wrong on the 787.

Its high time Air India realised it has no one else to blame but itself for its poor performance.

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