Friday, December 28, 2012

One Man's Rubbish Is Another Man's Feast(updated)

Not long ago it was reported by the head cheese, from Ryan Air, that the 737 Max is Rubbish. That CEO is still employed having Ryan Air under his careful guidance.  Why the name calling and hate mongering for Boeing's new product? I hope to answer that question after we examine a "brief" on the 737 Max. First here is an excerpt from March 29, 2012 news clippings.

WBJ site report from the Rubbish pile: Citation below by Daniel McCoy of WBJ
"Ryanair CEO Michael O’Leary on Thursday, speaking about a plan to swoop in on jet orders he believes other carriers will drop, again voiced a negative opinion of the Boeing Co.’s 737 MAX.
Although he said Airbus’ A320neo “does credibly deliver” on its promised fuel savings, the 737 Max “as a product, is rubbish,” according to a report from Bloomberg.
This isn’t the first time O’Leary has voiced his opinion on the 737 MAX, Boeing’s new engine variant of the 737.
In January, he said he was “unimpressed” with the aircraft and expected that weight issues would offset the fuel savings Boeing says the plane will offer.
The leader of European low-fare carrier also said he is interested in a jetliner that he’s hoping will be developed by China."
Many airline customers have examined his statements since March of 2012. Here is the timely response:
At the time of his Rubbish pronouncement the stats; Then vs Now, nine month later.
 First Quarter 2012 Orders Detail, Then Report
 O'leary sets the fire! 

2012 Orders Detail, Now Report
Customers are not listening to O'Leary, because they are not paid from the same source.
That is what happened to Michael O Leary's dire comment on the 737 MAX.
Memorandum File:
To: Cows, Flame Throwers,  Neophytes, and China. 
From: Lifndrag

Date: December 31,2012
1. 648 additional 737's have been purchased since O'Leary's rendering of "Rubbish" and compared to Boeing's recent accounting even though the year's final number are not compiled.
2. Somebody did not give Mr. O' Leary my memo.
3. By definition A "Shill" is by Merriam Webster Dictionary a...: to act as a spokesperson or promoter <the eminent Shakespearean producer…is now shilling for a brokerage house — Andy Rooney> Used in a sentence. "Mr. O'Leary is a shill for his paymaster Chinese Aeronautics known for (advanced achievements in making Jets and Aero Space) accomplishments."
4. Money is floating somewhere nearby Ryan Air that has no discernible origin.
5. Mr O'Leary had a cow, over the Max, and started a fire near Boeing World Headquarters in Chicago's and was seen leaving town on a Chinese made Jet.  
Now that I had some fun I want to finish my observation in a civil manner.
Exhibit A:

The Seattle Times Reports on December 28,2012 (PRA): by:Seattle Times business staff 

"With the Boeing plane lighter than the Airbus, the MAX version of the LEAP is much smaller than the neo version — 69 inches vs. 78 inches in diameter.
Yet, CFM is contractually guaranteeing that the MAX and the neo engines will each be 15 percent more fuel-efficient than current models.
That sounds like a recipe for maintaining today’s status quo, in which Airbus and Boeing split the narrowbody market roughly evenly." 
Retaining status quo is solid ground for Boeing during the Engine Wars. A plus for attracting and keeping Airline customers. They will gain market appeal from other sources, for innovation and commonalities found in its revised family of aircraft. Boeing is making a strategic move by setting standards in consistent form for all its other new aircraft.  Never underestimate the great expectation factor for the traveling public. That expectation is set on the 787 now translates to the 737.  A customer boards a Max and is familiar and comfortable as on a 787. A pilot pushes buttons and switches the controls and looks at screens similar to the 777 and 787.  Training time and familiarization for flying the 737 is one step away from flying the 787. Maintenance commonalities like procedural checks become consistent with Boeing' family of aircraft. Differences on the surface are subtle from model to model. However, the complexity going from one aircraft to another increases as well. Maintenance procedures and technical knowledge will significantly change from model to model.  The drill to check the maintenance work will be similar (electronic flight bag) but to do the maintenance will vary, significantly. 
The articles further states:
"The total weight savings from using composites in the fan system alone is 500 pounds.
Snecma’s debris rejection system ensures that sand or other runway detritus that is sucked in by the fan is centrifuged out to the edges and bypasses the engine core.
GE’s expertise is in the hot, high-pressure core of the engine, where the air is squeezed until its volume is reduced by a factor of 22 — twice the compression ratio in today’s 737 engine.
As the compressed air flows into a combustion chamber that can reach a temperature of more than 3,000 degrees F, only a separate streaming layer of cool air prevents the metal from melting.
The hot gas flow then turns a high pressure turbine, around which is a shroud made from a ceramic composite, strengthened with metallic threads — just thousandths of an inch away from the fast-spinning turbine blades.
Both the spinning and the static components expand with heat, so a flow of cooling air, precisely adjusted on the fly, must be used to tweak the temperature and maintain the tight clearance."

Having read the Seattle Times offering, one gains an appreciation for the difficulty in the tasks of high heat constraints, high pressure management, and extremely low tolerances for extremely fast moving parts. The engine is just one part of the Max puzzle. 

R & D Article

Without going into great detail, follow these bullet points about what this means from my memo to Mr. O'Leary, which he didn't read!
  • CFM, Engine Vs The Neo GTF is a push, both jump up by 12% fuel economy.
  • Drag and Weight the MAX advances by only having a 2% gain vs The Neo 3.5%
  • Wing geometries net gain is 2% for the Neo
  • Advance Technology Winglet (phew) was not added on the Boeing's proposed duel feathered tips (Flight Feathers, yeah)
  • The difference is an additional 6% for the Max gained from NG design from the original 737.
  • The 737 Max base model has 162 revenue seats where the Neo Base has 150.

From this optimistic Boeing Chart, the total Max gains is 17%, and the Neo is 12% from base model, for one man's rubbish is another man's feast. Boeing is betting that a lighter aircraft, holding more passengers with the 787 motif will win the day. This will be one tricked out model when done. The "well" Boeing is drawing from, is deep, but the water is so fine.

The Deep Well:
  • 787 commonalities
  • Complex Engine Technology
  • Lessons Learned Book
  • New Materials Parts Bin (High Tech Aluminum, increased use of new metals)
  • Aero Design Advancement (dual feathers, body changes, Engine placement, and wing design).
Tweaking technology and enhancing the Boeing wing with the Advanced Technology Winglets (ATW) will change significantly the relationship between the old and the new. It is noted that Boeing is tweaking the center of gravity with engine placement. They are also looking at trailing edge 787 like, wing adjustments in relationship to the shifted center of gravity from engine placement. There are pluses and minuses for both adjustments.  Boeing is seeking the sweet spot (Max spot) for both.  Before that is done, the right sized engine diameter for Boeing is closing in on a "Max Spot", this has come about since Mr. O'Leary's barn fire in Chicago. The engine diameter that Boeing is strongly looking at is 68.4 inches. An inch here or there changes efficiency by .05% one way or other. By changing size upward you increase performance, but create more drag and weight.  What is the net effect? That is the Max spot, and  is now what is currently undergoing testing before final configuration. 
Enough said for  Aviation Geekdom, I would like to briefly comment on the passenger side. The Max design will improve the interior from its current 787 like interior. The Max will also have 787 like avionics. Other internal core efficiency has not yet arrived on the usual press releases, but it is in the background.  Boeing has an opportunity to trick out this pony from the  "Lessons Learned Book Of 787".
The Max to-do List:
  • Final Engine Configuration with weight, drag and placement.  Boeing is inches away from the final answer.
  • Nose gear design is dependent on bullet number one results.
  • What 787 architectures flow forward, when stuffing it to the "Max".
  • Final wing tweaks dependent on engine placement and size in inches change.
  • Transitional Design Improvements. Prepare the Max Design as if it will become a plastic design. Meaning how the Max is put together, could easily translate to a plastic model, like the 787.  
  • Max is a Continuous Improvement (QM exercise) model for passenger comfort. You can help fill in this blank.
Don't be surprised at the Max Party shortly after the NEO flies.
Boeing will include surprises from its proprietary bag already shared with customers during sales meetings, but not released to the press as of late.

As this piece started, "One Man's Rubbish is another man's feast", Mr. O'Leary does not have the gravitas of Akbar Al Baker (Qatar) nor the resources of Boeing to call it rubbish.  It is like it sounds, a paid advertisement from China. Even though people in the know don't buy hype, they just seek the truth and buy airplanes. Hype is defined by Boeing, Airbus and others. Truth is found in the air from satisfied customers. After all, it was just a barn fire outside Chicago. Mr O'Leary, the town didn't burn down, by a long shill's distance.

cc: +, all lurkers, and people loving Aviation's Renaissance.