Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Boeing's Merging Technology

Boeing has a merger going on as a sort. Its not the devouring of a competitor like a Lockheed Martin or a composite wing maker from Japan moving to the 777X Everett wing plant. Its more like merging its proprietary pantry into everything it cooks with its Commercial Aviation Division. The merging includes its Space and technology with the military arm. Even the merging goes both ways with the Commercial division giving The Navy its Sub Locating 737's. The 767 is now a tanker called the KC-46. Missiles, drones, and 787 "oh my". Do you want a AH64 -Apache with that order?

Boeing Photo Credit

A Boeing War Bird sans mood lighting.

Getting back to commercial aviation and travel logging, Let's consider what the merging implosion is doing. First there was the "Moon Shooting 787" Any self respecting Boeing engineer or sub contracting engineer will tell you tell that in heart beat, "It was about every airplane Boeing builds, every copter it flies and every drone flying off the deck an aircraft carrier". Merging technology comes from NASA projects, autoclaves and aluminum formulation. Even the SR-72, yes you heard me right, Lockheed's Skunk-worked SR-72  can go Mach 5+ with some friendly help from Boeing subcontracting, as part of that merging technology.

The 787 did not shift the Boeing  paradigm. Competition did that for Boeing. Boeing built excellent aircraft during the 90's, with each model being unique in its design. Havoc ensued for aviation flight line commandos, who had to learn each models different design and tooling quirks. The 737 to the 757 and then 767; all unique and flying differently. Boeing made a very effective change. The new Max merged its technology with "Boeing's Moon Shot" technological bin of advanced engineering. The Max will fly like a 787. A pilot can transition from smallest to the largest qualifying in the shortest possible time. It is a key result of merging Boeing's goal of spending Billions on the 787. It had spent the billions for all its merging technology as one seminal effort not just the 787.

All of this merges into the 787 and goes back out flowing to the 777X and 737 Max. Plus the venerable Queen of the skies, 747-8i. Even the KC-46 (AKA 767)  has 787 flight avionics and flight controls.

The 787 did not shift the Boeing paradigm, competition did that to Boeing. Boeing built excellent aircraft with each model being unique in its design. Havoc for aviation flight line commandos ensued, who then have to learn each models different design and tooling quirks. The 737 to the 757 and then 767, all different and flying differently. Boeing now has changed the maintenance synchronization so effectively from its "Moon Shot" 787 program. The new Max merged its technology with the "Moon's" technological bin of advanced engineering. The Max will fly like a 787 and maintain with key 787 like servicing ques. A pilot can transition from smallest  to the largest Boeing, qualifying in the shortest possible time. It is a key result of merging with Boeing's goal of spending Billions on the 787. Where it is now a resource for all its merging technology coming from that one seminal effort. The 787 was  the means for Boeing's justification of its change management's end.

Boeing needed the 787 placebo for escaping all its diverse obsessions found in its nature. No longer are there corporate Obsessions in the test kitchen of ideas messing around. The 787 took the company way past its own eclectic and insatiable appetite for its aircraft OCD to something grander. It shot past commonality of the mundane as Airbus has achieved. Boeing's own compulsive behavior can not be breached by another design binge from a competitor. Remedial help came with one assignment. Build an all new, plastic, and metal aircraft. It Unified the corporation with technology. Mission was accomplished. All Boeing projects now have 787 DNA in them. Whether its direct technology transferred over from the 787 or indirect from lessons learned, both will serve Boeing DNA well for thirty more years.

Boeing made the paradigm shift, as demonstrated in both sales and deliveries. It left Airbus holding a tacky array of insufficient advancements on its aircraft. The 787 made Boeing the world's largest Aircraft Company again. In 2004 Boeing said let's make something best for its customers, our corporation, and this industry. The shift has become, "We did it", chant. "Now let's preserve our leap with a brighter horizon for all our divisions, and stay away from the Moon for awhile". It will drive everyone crazy, if we are mooning forward. Horizons are made for lovers of aviation. Moons are for Madmen.