Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Another 767 Approach Has Landed

The venerable 767 is finding a way to keep alive. Boeing's backlog website shows about 98 767 to be built as of May 31, 2018. Adding the recent 12 ordered by FedEx, the number rises to even 110 frames to be built. No more 767-300ER passenger aircraft have been ordered at this time nor is it expected.  Why do customers keep ordering the 767F such as the US military tanker program, the freight haulers UPS and FedEx? photo
Image result for 767 freight airframe

AJOT Quote:

"The 767 Freighter, based on the 767-300ER (extended range) passenger jet, can carry approximately 58 tons (52.7 tonnes) of revenue cargo with intercontinental range, making it a flexible platform for serving long-haul, regional or feeder markets."

Airbus admits it builds airframes for passenger traffic only and a freight version from the same passenger aircraft would have a gross shortfall for freight hauling due to its passenger optimized design. Boeing has designed all its family of aircraft for passenger or freight hauling even though freight is a Boeing secondary goal. The 787 family has yet to reveal a freight market or its freight capacity. 
However, now that the A-330 has replaced the 767 in the marketplace for hauling passengers. The 767 has reared its heavy capacity legs above the marketplace. The 767 frame can haul 58 tons in a conveniently configured frame for which the A-330 won't match. 

The military saw this airframe in a bidding war with Airbus over the KC-46 tanker project. It took two bidding processes to settle the airplane makers differences and Boeing won the bidding war, where it hasn't looked back since then. It just sells 767 freighter models based on the 767-300ER, even though it doesn't have the latest engines nor aerodynamic attributes, the A-330 passenger model is based on. The 767 can haul a semi-truck load of weight including the truck weight itself.
The news has now reported 12 more 767 freight airframes are ordered by FedEx, thus Boeing announces plans of increasing producing from 2.5 units to 3 units a month. The future freight order book may continue to rise as other competitors to FedEx may join the freight battle with more orders. This is the third production increase for the 767 in recent times.

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

The DDG 1000 Is Just Prototype "A"

The Zumalt DDG1000 doesn't have half its weapons capabilities envisioned. As an example no railgun (too expensive), no advanced cruise missile (under development), and finally, its concurrent adversaries ( the competition changes how it does its business every day).

The plug and play ship is not a destroyer since its bigger than a cruiser. Its invisibility on a radar screen is its chief design attribute as known by anyone paying attention. A new ship class designation should be assigned. A battleship is too big and old, a cruiser is so 1980, and the DDG1000 is just a weapons carrying ghost. Not to mention frigates and LCS, the DDG1000 has its own number sequence. What will really get the ball rolling is a new enumeration and class designation for what the navy has wrought.

The Zumwalt class ship is every ship thrown into a seabag stirred not shaken. Concurrency is plugging whatever works well into its hull. The ship lacks its own class. A class name comes to mind best representing what it is on the ocean. A destroyer destroys everything in harm's way including itself if necessary. A battleship is the main gun in a gun battle. A frigate is just a frigate with some hops to its propulsion system. The Arleigh Burke class is a very effective upscaled WWII Tin Can with everything that has been long since scrapped from what destroyers dream about.

Therefore the prototypical number should be as follows: 100-A,100-B, and 100-C. A new class name should be a Formula-1 class of ship. It goes faster than a cruiser and destroys the competition in a battle and can do it all in the littorals once upgraded for its time and place. A Formula-1 is constantly being tuned and tested not unlike the race car on race day or during track testing. The weather plays into what tire a Formula -1 racer uses not unlike the DDG1000 Zumwalt needs an over-expensive cruise missile for moving targets. The class designation and ship sequence number should be F-1-100A until its dialed in as a warfighter. The Navy has until the letter Z to get it right. The DDG1003 is the third version which should be designated as F-1-100C.

Monday, June 18, 2018

I Will Defend

The DDG1001 is named for Michael Monsoor. He died for his country, his team and most of all for his family. He will not be forgotten, his ship's namesake carries his spirit into battle.  Like most Medal of Honor recipients, he was a vivacious soldier, sailor or an Airman for this country's preservation. Now a ship bears his name. I take time and blog space to re-link this story from "The Drive" and offer the below video in memory of Michael Monsoor, and his dedication to this nation and its defense.

God Bless this ship and its mission 

Sunday, June 17, 2018

The Cattle And The Bean Stock

It's not a fairy tale but a real tale chasing its head going in a circle. Cattle, formerly known as airline passengers, is not what's it all about, but becomes a useful tool which all airlines require. A cow must sit in a seat for up to 17 hrs but not exceeding 20 hours as airlines have not conceived of a 20-hour cow hauler, but is trying in some sort of maniacal burst of genius. Of course, the "head" is an airline CEO. Now another head is the airplane builder who can invent and promote how more "efficient" its airplane flies holding cows going east or west. The planemaker has big barns holding its ideas for the airline. The cow is an airplane passenger that gives milk to the airline and the planemaker.

The Belgrade Theatre in association with Imagine Theatre present
Related image

Jack In The Bean Stock Just For Kids Below

Chapter II describes the bean who counts things and writes down those things with a pleasing stack of beans. It too needs cows with lots of milk to give. The bean counter is hired to please the stock which will be described in Chapter III. They all love the cow to death and chapter IV will describe that love. Back to chapter II. The bean is the driving force behind every behind. A collective "huh" is heard throughout the kingdom. The whole scheme is driven by the stock and not the cow. The bean counting proves the airplane-maker, is in the business of making beans count more than the cows giving milk, but milk is what grows those beans driving the stock upwards. Let's put cows in its proper seat assignment and make more efficient meat hooks for the cows. Let's compress the meat in smaller and smaller WC's with hand sanitizer coming out of its partition. A sink? I don't see no stinking sink! Cows only need a trough the size of a banana. These were bean counter's ideas, I know, I used to count beans.

Chapter III is about the stock going skyward to the great kingdom of mythological industrial giants. The stock is what bean counters do in its spare time hence the words bean stock. The stockholder has a slang name bantered about as "every man's Jack" or commonly known as common Jack or better known as common stock. The higher the stock grows the more common Jack becomes relevant. Getting more cattle in smaller spaces came from the "doing more with less" paradigm. The guy who called it an oxymoron was fired. Milk was needed to grow the stock since the bean counter said so. The airplane was built for more cattle and meat hooks were allocated hanging next to the very small WC. In fact, "the do more with less" VP's were busy slapping each other on the back when the oxymoron guy left the building unnoticed. 

Chapter IV is an ever ending love for the cow and its milk. After that, the cow is on its own leaving an airport in some sort of yellow conveyance. The CEO's love their milk, hence they love the cow, but will only go so far since the real dependency is on Jack and his common bean Stock. The airplane is built for stock growth and the Airline serves as many cows as can be counted even without having adequate troughs in the WC. The single-aisle "Max" becomes another "oxymoron" and its an American airline idea making the planemaker so very pleased as its stock grows so high and after the bean counters keep counting while the nearby cattle only just moo and low, hanging from its efficient meat hooks for every cow's "comfortable flight"?

The flight attendant read somewhere the latest Max passenger will have a tissue box sized sink fold out of the wall with a push of a red button. It is recommended the passenger should not deploy the sink if standing or sitting in the loo. It could cause great passenger harm if the airplane hits rough air.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

The Aggressive Nature of Boeing's "All Hands On Deck"

Ever wonder why Boeing sales have taken off in 2018 which was predicted to be a down sales year? You are not alone. Perhaps 2017 was just an anomaly as both mega builders, Airbus and Boeing booked about thousand airplanes each during 2017, but Boeing was honing its strategic spear. It had a big tent approach to its market. An airplane customer walks into Boeing's tent and asked for military accessories. 

Image result for world's biggest tent

The sales chief offers, "it's on aisle 17 just behind the drone section hanging from the tent beams".

Not only does Boeing have drones it has a whole world-wide customer services campaign. It has established a way for an airline customer to get from Actuators to airplane ZZZ's and that's in the seat department. An airline can hire Boeing to maintain, build and fly your business. The real secret to the Boeing sauce is that all hands are on deck welcoming the buyers and talking the same language with one another. One sales trooper will grab a peer out of ancillary sales department and say, 

"I want the airline customer to shake this person's hand, they can fix you up with a fully automated Boeing product kiosk of your choice"  The ancillary salesperson starts talking how good is the Max 7 and if you can't go big, the Max 7 is just the right size.

Hold on, "I thought we were talking airport kiosks," says the customer?

The sales team looks on with a knowing smile and mutters to the customer, "let's go to dinner".

Over the horderves, "You have no airplane, No ground team, no problem,  we can build your airline for you in this big tent. You say you need a headwind report on a route? No problem it's on aisle 22 just behind the weather balloons which are behind computers and wifi department. Did I mention the Max 7 flies 3,800 miles connecting almost any paved landing strip, anywhere? The headwind wind women can help with your Max 7 order as well before you check out. Did I mention loans?" 

"We have a banking kiosk at the front, making loans, just for airlines needing anything under this big tent, we are currently loaning with favorable rates on the Max 7".

Before the main course is even served the customer is beginning to get it. Every salesperson is on deck with the full suite of Boeing product. Not only on deck, but they can put together the deal and get you the right people to do it! Even as far away as aisle 39  located in the far corner of the "Big Tent".

The DIY airline only wants airplanes and that's it. The Boeing, "no problem team", spurs into action and offers the right airplane for DIY airlines, of course, the Max 7, at a sensible discount.  

The Airbus sales teams are looking for the "Big Tent's" exit, nobody got the memo and they are lost.

and... that's why 2018 is having a great Boeing sales year.

Friday, June 15, 2018

Oder Wars 787/777X VS A350 ULR

There airline carriers all over the map pleading for big RFP's from both Boeing and Airbus. June saw the news about Qantas, New Zealand, and Oman asking for airframe what if's from the makers.  The airlines want to go big in passengers and miles. Project Sunrise is a Qantas tease for either mega airplane maker. New Zealand well entrenched with its 787-9's seeks to provide service across the wide Pacific going to both New York and all destinations possible in South America.

Oman wants a bid with the 787 and A330 much like Hawaiian airlines just held where Boeing won the day. The wildcard is how the 777X can play into the deal-making. The A350ULR is the Airbus hold card for both Qantas and New Zealand deal making. The 777X becomes the spoiler and timing of such an aircraft the determiner. Airframe price is an influencer on those who seek a fleet strategy. Since Boeing already has a foothold on all three airlines mentioned it has a good chance of winning orders from two out of three mentioned. The fleet A-330 is hiding in the background as its models' age so the 787 has to go against replacing those older A330's with a 787 instead of an A-330NEO. Hawaiian went with Boeing in the same circumstance and Airbus may be in the mood of giving away is airframes on the cheap. Its airplane ordering trench warfare and Boeing has the high ground at this time in the A-330NEO battle.

June saw a lot of airplane talk about what airlines are looking for and both makers heard those talking those points.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

How Long Is The 797 Vision?

The 797 idea may have started before the 757 stopped productions during the year 2004.  Boeing shelved the middle of the market concept when there was no 757 replacement revealed to the public. It had its hands full with the 787 and other models of 777 and the Max. It was a running battle with Airbus and airplane supremacy. The time has come where years of engineering with other programs and the now apparent 797 program has occurred.  It was stated by another aviation journalist that it takes 10 years to build a clean sheet design before it is delivered. Counting back fourteen years may have signaled a back room engineering design had already hatched for a 797. It depended on the 787, and the 737 Max to make it happen.

A 797 has been a WIP for at least five years as it gathers technology developed by all Boeing's commercial aviation programs. Its been the last three years Boeing has consulted with its customers for the perfect NMA that would fill a 4,000 plane gap between the Max and the 787. Ten years may be a correct estimation for a clean sheet and Boeing has already checked off many of those years pondering its NMA program. It has reached the point of just freezing the concept and announcing the launch customers.  Boeing is further down the launch road than pundits may like to think out of some deduction and logic.

A 797 launch is going to happen sooner rather than later. It has unused plant space or property space for building an immense 797 facility. It makes sense to move the Everett 787  production to its own sole source facility in Charleston, SC. The SC facility can build all the 787 types by expanding on its vast acreage, at that site with more cement and steel buildings erected. The supplier system is in place in SC and Boeing has proven it can build production space very quickly, as in under 18 months. 

The 797 Jumpstart will occur in the Northwest as the 797 is refined into a flying copy while additional 787 production comes with building all the 787's at Boeing's Charleston, SC site. It can and it will deliver 14 787's a month from that site. It has already proven the low country can do what it is tasked to do.

However, Boeing-Everett is up to designing, testing, and building the 797 under a very close watch from its expert engineers who are experienced in the new plane programs. A natural logic would be for having the 777X, 747F, and 767F-Military all occur in Everett, WA. The 797 could and will fit in the production within this Northwest location. It's a natural decision to fold in the 797 on its available floor space since it became open when surge lines evaporated and other programs wound down. 

Boeing has space and has very capable people anchored in the Northwest to do this program starting from its already and current three-year-old design points, reducing its ten years required for a first delivery clean sheet down to seven years, and ending with first delivery in 2025. 

Boeing doesn't have to retest the copyrighted technologies it developed over the last 15 years. It only has to integrate those technologies into the 797. It is what Boeing already has available without using risky testing processes or using any untested assumptions since those technologies were already de-risked from all other programs mentioned from Boeing's family of aircraft.

The unknown 797 engine program is the NMA's biggest hurdle and it seems logic will put Boeing into accepting a 50,000 thrust engine from GE/Safran as its sole 797 source engine offering. Boeing would not improve its market with a dual engine maker choice for its customers. The 797 stands alone and an Airbus counter would most likely be developing an A321 off-shoot with A Rolls Royce engine at the forefront. 

The development engine time at this point from a clean sheet is about five years. The Boeing engine supplier has been working on an engine concept over the last three years. At a launch customers announcement, an offered engine will already have thousands of hours run through its casings.

Boeing Beats Airbus YTD, by 3-1 After May Count Totals

Total order numbers reach a net 306 orders for Boeing's as of May 31, 2018 date as compared to the Airbus tally of 111 units. This is almost a Boeing 3-1 order lead before Farnborough Airshow the chart below recaps Boeings month and YTD totals. The month reported 43 net orders added during May. The big number was the 787-9 and 787-8 orders for a net number of 10 -9's and 2  -8's bringing the 787 net total to 83 for its YTD number.

Monday, June 11, 2018

Rolls Royce Package "B" Is Sent To Detention With Package "C"

Rolls Royce is having one of those years. First its 787 engine Trent 1000 Package "C" started disintegrating its fan blades, then came an inner compressor flaw and now 166 of its Boeing Trent 1000, Package "B", engines have been flagged and will be sent to the penalty box until further notice. 

The Winging Tally shows Rolls Royce has its engines on 273 787's or times two it has delivered  546 engines to its Boeing customers. Package "B" engine review equals 166 as mentioned above. It was reported that Rolls Royce has 380 affected engines for inspection delivered to 787 customers. In total the affected Rolls Royce engines now tally 546 engines under review or needs fixing.  These numbers don't include spares but do address units flying with paying customers. Otherwise, the whole lot of 787 Rolls Royce Trent Engines are now under a review or needs immediate fixing. The FAA has restricted the 787 with Rolls Royce Package "C" from flying 140 minutes away from an airport. The ultimate and prior rating was for 330 minutes from any applicable airport, The 2 hour and 20-minute flying window hobbles Rolls Royce customers to lease older airframes or models as a fill-in while the 787-Rolls remains grounded or under a mechanical fix process. 

The company just announced a 10% across the board lay-off of employees while it halts certain field and production operations until a resolution is completed. A speculation is that Rolls was chasing the GE engine performance and it pushed through solutions within its jet engineering that failed to hold up during airline operations. It also may end up making the Dreamliner a one engine aircraft if Rolls doesn't solve its current engine crises.  A situation GE would love to address with Rolls Royce customers having Dreamliners.


Is it possible to re-engine aircraft with different engine options?

The two different engine models compatible with the 787 use a standard electrical interface to allow an aircraft to be fitted with either Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 or General Electric GEnx engines. This interchangeability aims to save time and cost when changing engine types; while the previous aircraft could exchange engines for those of a different manufacturer, the high cost and time required made it rare.

The benefit of interchangeability makes leasing aircraft easier for the lessor, as their fleet would be compatible with all the airlines and their existing facilities.

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Denver Mile High Will Go to 150 Gates

It already has 6 long runways. The lengths of 12,000 ft or 16,000 are immense. It is known that Denver could double its runways to 12 if required. By 2021, it could handle a mass aviation exodus from the eastern part of this nation. The addition of 39 new gates was reported by AirlineRatings

That means, when completed, in the next three years, Denver could handle another 39 flights every hour for taking-off or landing while bringing the total gates capacity to 150. If an airplane holds 200 passengers, then every hour could see a 30K passenger exchange. 

Immense came to mind, but other insidious thoughts float to the top of my head. In a time of war, Denver is known as the DC of the west. The rocky mountain front holds vast underground facilities only a 30-mile shot from Denver International Airport. Of course, that could transport 30,000 people via interstate or the rumored underground rail system to the Rocky Mountain front. Most of DIA terminals have rail connections in its terminal basements. 

Some tracks lead into cement doors and nobody knows where those lead. Riding a "passenger car" to the terminal of your destination and looking out its window, one can see those track spurs to nowhere. I have and have wondered what's up with that?

Image result for denver airport

Going to internet rumor sites concludes it's not a good idea to investigate too far into your imagination without a good exit plan. However, 39 new gates and the possibility for another 6 runways makes one wonder a lot. 

Image result for denver airport

The situation room is rendered on DIA's massive murals when walking unescorted through the terminals. The tent-like architecture speaks of a nomadic center for people wanting to become lost.