Monday, July 16, 2018

Boeing's 797 Is The Candy Wrapper Boeing Wants Also The Candy Bar

Boeing currently sells its airplanes for 30% of its future cash inflow where it could also market in-house products supporting those aircraft over the next thirty years for 70% more cash intake. Boeing theoretically, has a 70% in-house product margin not yet tapped. It could and now has indicated it will seek ways to move more product line to its core mission.

The following are possibilities and actual implementations:

·      Global services such as ground maintenance and Boeing staffing.
·      Global services such as over-arching training and Boeing proprietary parts supplier
·      Exclusive Supplier Contracts
·      Providing a third party gateway for major systems replacement such as engines, gearing, and electronics.
·      Finally, a nose to tail Boeing product suite.
·      Additionally, worldwide added value accessibility for leading-edge Boeing components

These are a wide-ranging list for what Boeing is establishing for its plus 70%  business model. Selling an airplane is a gateway into the Boeing airplane business catalog. It may become as simple as going to its electronic interface and selecting a preferred service item and a Boeing representative will confirm the service or add value to an airline own business plan. China is home to multiples of start-up airlines. The Boeing emphasis towards the added value model when buying an aircraft expands a customer’s options for its new ventures. Cash-strapped legacy carriers may also identify high-cost areas of its operations and quickly go to Boeing's 70% portion and pull out a plan that is more efficient so it can remain more competitive.

In other words, the 70% realm is created out of the one-stop shop philosophy. Boeing is changing its business model to accommodate rising airline customers at every stage of its growth and offers already mature airline customers’ options in which to lever its operations on-the-fly. The Boeing goal is to capture the financial potential after an airplane is sold by 70% over its next thirty years while in operation with an airline, at a value less than what the same airline could do on its own. Boeing being aggressive with it one-stop-shop business modeling convincing customers while purchasing a Boeing it is eligible for additional Boeing advantages over thirty Years. The over-arching business plan has a name and its called "The Edge".

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Boeing Chokes On Its 797 and Says 2019

Winging It has long predicted a 2018 797 launch. The time window is just right for Boeing but its leaders have just now cleared its voice saying, "2019 for the 797 Goldilocks and will launch (hinted) in 2019 because its business case is not yet perfected for the 797. Winging It also believes a concurrent program for the 797 exists. 

In other words, the program has seven years before an official delivery date but in those seven years, Boeing would also concurrently resolve all financial planning concerns. Boeing does have its customers for a launch at this time. It also has its technological bundle for the 797 in a row. The design points are now relegated to an adjustment period where the eraser could change what launch customer would want for a refining design. An observer (Winging It) has no idea what has just occurred with the Boeing 797 prototype but only assumes it will hold 220-270 passengers and fly 5000-mile distance with full loads.

As mentioned before, CFM (A GE joint venture with Safran, jet engine builders) has let this little nuance out of its bag; "CFM is ready to go with Boeing on a 797 45,000 lbs thrust range". That is a major concern (having a new engine) for this airplane program and one more year waiting for a launch does not change the 2025 first delivery date but does allow Rolls, PW and GE; a shot of making a solid proposal during 2019. The concurrency has started with an engine builder already "concurrently" working an engine-up by Paris where development is farther along than the press would indicate. Expect an engine proposal coming forward, with Boeing accepting a single source jet engine. Rolls Royce is working at a high pace proposing a 797 jet engine by Paris Air Show, 2019. CFN is working and indicating it is ready for Boeing's 797 and GE is lurking while PW GTF is also a strong contender.

It could announce at Farnborough but won't announce because Boeing has backed down its new airplane development swagger as a corporate policy, thus avoiding all-new airplane woes experienced from the 787 experience. Airbus knows where Boeing is going and Boeing is not in the Airbus rearview mirror. Airbus needs to clean its windscreen several times a day from Boeing splatters at this time. The 797 is the biggest spatter for Airbus, which no wiper could possibly clean in time for the Paris Airshow. Boeing is going to have a huge widebody order book at Farnborough while Airbus will announce several hundred single-aisle A-320's orders. The dollar order value will favor Boeing at Farnborough and beyond.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

The KC-46 Takes-Off

Needing a certificate from several agencies and especially the US Air Force, the Boeing corporation exhales as it completes its tanker tests this month. It is ready to start serving the US Air Force with its Boeing built KC-46 tankers going forward. One of the key problems for the tanker at a previous time of this final test was the remote sensing function for the boom hooking up with its flying customer's. Prior to the final test, the tanker's remote sensing would have some occasion to lose contact or scratch and dent the trailer fueling aircraft with its fueling probe. 

The former process for fuel transfer required an airman to lie flat watching the hook-up from a prone position while operating controls for its fueling procedure. The KC-46 now has an airman forward of this former position conducting this mission on a screen with all the tanker fueling capabilities at his fingertips. The tests for this modernization had some flaws in the process where glare showing from the sensor to the screen blocked a clear view for its operators. 

It went back to the shop for fixing and testing for which it now has passed using software upgrades and possibly some other equipment upgrades. It now works as tests indicate and the tanker can now deliver without operator obstruction of view.

A KC-46A Pegasus tanker takes off from Boeing Field, Seattle, June 4, 2018. The KC-46 program achieved an important milestone July 6, with completion of the final flight tests required for first aircraft delivery to the U.S. Air Force. (Courtesy photo)

KMUW reports:
"The recent tests involved the tanker’s remote vision system and refueling two more types of aircraft. Those results, combined with testing completed in June, made the tanker eligible for delivery, the Air Force said."

The tanker will have first delivery in late October to the Airforce at McConnell AFB, starting the sequence for 18 deliveries by April 2019.

Whew, it's about time and it sounds like a military marvel from all the work done on the program. It will fly the wounded, surveil, and fuel everything the Airforce has with wings except missiles. There are other functions not discussed and remains secret this airplane will do.

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

The B-21 Northrup Bomber Winner

The DoD has scheduled at least 100 active combat bombers and it could go as high as 164 production deliveries depending on costs and program progress. Northrup won the bidding war partially because it has experience in making a flying wing body bomber like its B-2 bomber.

B-2 Photo from National Interest
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Now comes the B-21 Raider from Northrup as it is rapidly approaching the Critical Design Review phase (CDR) depicted below.

LA Times Rendering 
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The CDR will report if the B-21 has reached a paper accomplishment of achieving design elements, meeting the Northrup's RFP proposal response before building the first flying prototype. It is an important milestone for the program. The technical paper shows how Northrup will accomplish the B-21 Raider completeness within costs for numbers requested. It may be a wide range CDR including testing and product upgrading during its production cycle.

National Interest Quote:

"We haven’t done CDR yet, we are on our way to critical design review,” Randy Walden, director and program executive officer for the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office—which is responsible for B-21 program— said during an speaking engagement held at the Air Force Association’ Mitchell Institute on June 25."

It will be a stealth bomber. On another note, the B-52 will incorporate heavy lifting weapons receptacles of 20,000 lbs for its wings. Suggesting a mission change within the shadows of the B-21 future capabilities.

Boeing Orders Up For June

It's a pre-Farnborough order blaze for Boeing totaling 460 net orders. Not detailing the Airbus book of 206 net orders may discourage Farnborough Air Show-goers unless it has held back order announcements until the UK airshow. Boeing will announce more at the airshow. It will be a dogfight for top dog at the ordering booth. The mid-year numbers favor Boeing but an end of 2018 order numbers are yet to come. Boeing's lead having some large MOU's not finalized, will boost the Boeing order book along the way.

Below is a Winging It/Boeing year to date net order synapsis of firmed orders:

The Max leads the pack with 347 net orders to date. The widebody group easily outpaces Airbus with Boeing's 141 net ordered. Airbus has only 50 net orders for its widebody this year. The "Airshow" will provide a platform for Airbus to catch-up, but will it? That becomes the question before the big event. Will It?

Monday, July 9, 2018

Making It Difficult For Airbus

Boeing has a plan and it’s the NMA 797. Airbus has a plane and it's the A-321NEO. Boeing would like to launch its 797 as an Airbus killer. In one fell swoop while announcing the 797 Boeing would like to stall both the A-321 and A-330NEO programs. Even though the 797 won't fly as far as the A-330NEO it doesn't have to because the purpose of its design is to land smack dab into the middle of where the market goes to and fro. That is to say, going from coast to coast linking millions. 

Boeing has all the pieces of a 797 from its drawing board to the flight line. It even has an "engine to go". The engine is another story and that's why it asked for engine makers to turn-in its RFP proposals a few days ago within 48 hours of its engine proposal deadline. Boeing has an engine, the proposals are for second place offering. I suppose it’s a CFM/GE with a 45,000 to 50,000 thrust range that it has already tested and is ready for the next step within the next three years. That is to say, flying on a 747 wing. The following are the big checkboxes completed before Farnborough Air Show.

Ø  Engine committed
Ø  Design confirmed
Ø  Customer Acceptance,
Ø  New Technology constrained to Boeing's already proven   technology
Ø  Production constrained by Location, Location, Location.
Ø  Realtors are celebrating at the local Hilton.
Ø  The 797 has a range of 5,200 miles/240 seats or 4,500   miles/270 seats
Ø  Everyone thinks of a Paris announcement with cream cheese   on a crumpet
Ø  Boeing is far removed from Paris as a pound is a pound the   world around 

Boeing's "job one" is to deflect Airbus at every turnstile. Waiting for a 2019 announcement at Paris keeps Airbus talking at the turnstile. Announcing during 2018 when the program is ready is the Boeing prize.

Friday, July 6, 2018

Farnborough UK

Fog glasses with optical sun shades is the complete Farnborough kit.

Image result for fog glasses

Choosing the right coat and shoes is next more import clothing on the list. I went for the Sherlock Holmes hunting cap including ear flaps, buttoned over the dome. The tobacco shop didn't have "my" pipe. It only had a Moby Dick style straight pipe. I quickly snatched up the Dr. Watson satchel with a monogrammed gold inlay "Farnborough 2018" on its flap.

Back to the center piece the coat.

Image result for sherlock holmes benedict cumberbatch

I found a high collar London Fogger draping down to mid shin bone. It came with a dark grey neck scarf off-setting the woolen coats tweed design. A Bennedict Cumberbach wannabe. The shoes are personnel and walking silly is the task at hand. I finished with the following Farnborough Airshow look as shown below.

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When sneaking around behind the curtains at each pavilion a more formal look was employed the over coat was added.

Image result for benedict cumberbatch sherlock shoes

Farnborough 2018, will introduce a new deduction motor and photographic memory cards.
Dr Watson will of course be manning the Sherlock booth for which I will stalk during the show.

Thursday, July 5, 2018

The Purpose Driven 797

The 797 dual aisle is aimed at the pinnacle of the single-aisle market, the 737 and A321. Airbus has had a long run with its A321 holding a baker's dozen and a half times ten going 4,000 miles now Boeing will take aim at building a new replacement for single-aisle travel. The key component is the dual aisle room is more efficient than a single aisle cattle shoot. Boeing added a 737-10 to its family of single-aisle continental flyers but it did not want to infringe upon devouring its single-aisle following with an all-new class of airplane like the 797. 

It wants to leapfrog Airbus' A321 capstone with a new class by not sacrificing its own single-aisle sales book. It doesn't want to harm the 787 range of function as many of that widebody travels under 5,000 miles on a particular route. The 797 is purpose-driven by fitting in and not dividing the Boeing market. It is also a disruptor for the A321 market. In a chess game, its a pawn next to opposition's king where any move by the king puts it into checkmate while the pawn put the King into check-mate at the same time. The 797 is that pawn. Airbus will have to build an all-new pawn to compete with Boeing, but it will also have to compete from behind the chess board's back line.

Boeing's finger is on that 797 pawn about to move one space forward on the corner to the Airbus King. 

Monday, July 2, 2018

Boeing Wrestles With Its 797 Egg Laying Chicken

The old question comes about from what came first? The Chicken or the egg? Boeing's 797 program is about to answer that age-old question with the 797. It says it wants to know how big the market will be for the 797 before it builds said aircraft. The other side says if we build it they will come thus expanding the market so the how big question is a moot point. The never-ending paradox defines Boeing's conundrum. We won't build until we know how big the market will be and the market won't know how big until Boeing makes first 797 delivery, or if it will buy more than Boeing's predictions. The best Boeing case scenario should of have been to keep quiet on the subject in case it's a nogo.

Boeing has climbed too far down that rope for it to climb back up from where it started. Boeing is overcommitted to an uncertain program to back off the 797. Its chicken has a white meat crowd following, and then a wings group who like its eggs easy over. Both groups want to have control of program costs most of the time. Boeing is well positioned to take a roll of its airplane development dice suffering a win-win outcome, and that's what Boeing was positioning itself for in the first place. This chicken is more apt to fly than lay an egg. The risk is Boeing fails to meet 797 expectation and can't recover its trip to the fence rail.

All in all the 797 has gone way past the end of a serviceable 797 rope and it will have to launch before it lays an egg.

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Vacation Starts Now

I'm on a personal traveling beat for the next two weeks. If something gets posted its raining somewhere. July 1-14 and so forth. Back for a Farnborough quip though. Enjoy your summer, it flies by too fast.