Wednesday, June 7, 2017

What Others Have Whispered About a Boeing MOM

Many blogs from Winging It have attempted to get its wings around Boeing's Middle of The Market (MOM) aircraft. The refresher talking points about what Winging It thinks is simple (see points below)

  • Its gotta go 5,000 miles
  • It will be two aisle seven across seating
  • Plastic wings and metal body
  • Lower cabin pressure equaling the 787
  • Down sized from big bodied engine offering

Now DNA from India enters the aviation rumble with its assessment:

"We have looked at the mild and we have looked at the wild and I can tell you we know that if you are going to address that market, you need a new airplane," Tinseth told Reuters after a two-day meeting of airline leaders in Mexico.

The clue is offered, "All New MOM" aircraft from Boeing.

DNA Reported Randy Tenseth:

"The two mid-market models, designed to carry about 220-260 passengers over 3,500 to 5,000 nautical miles (6,400-9,260 km), will also have a wing resembling the distinctive stiletto design of the 787 Dreamliner but with significant internal differences." 

DNA says; "Carbon composites allow manufacturers to make complex pieces in one shape and are well suited to the more elliptical design that Boeing has in mind for the new mid-market fuselage."

Winging It proposed an all metal body in earlier articles but the goal post have moved with technology and a conceptual elliptical plastic body, thus maintaining passenger space. Advances on a build with CFRP makes a case for a plastic body. Every day something new replaces something sort of new. A metal body in the single aisle to Middle of the Market aisle  dual aisle maybe too heavy for a all new MOM  as Boeing wants a template for follow-on design and metal is so yesterday. DNA points out weight and space are critical criteria for a MOM. It can't be too heavy or too narrow and it must fly 5,000 miles and DNA suggest a narrow under body with limited freight space.

Limited freight saves weight, an elliptical oval shape plays into better lift and drag coefficients for flying bodies having a narrower crown and bottom than waste line area. It is built for passenger travel and not everything or the kitchen sink goes into the belly as it will be built for the passenger. The main thing again is weight reduction and an elliptical plastic body achieves less weight, less drag for body width, and more passenger space at the same time. Hence 5,000 miles is its distance bench mark. 

A new frame from scratch allows for new and future engines without having a suffering of little space with ground limitations for which the 737 has for its engines. A taller landing gear gives the MOM the just right engine stance. A clue coming forward would be if a single source engine builder like a 737's talking points or dual engine maker from the 787 plan. If Boeing decides having multiple engine makers does not make the sale, it will go all out with one maker for the MOM. Hence a battle with CFM,GE, and Rolls. Winging IT places a wager on GE engines for the MOM.

What's new over the 787 or 777X? A slew of Boeing innovations accumulated over the last decade. Laminar flow characteristics on the body skin, potentially new CRFP process which eliminates autoclave and pressure treatments, and the possibility of an all electric architecture  similar to the 787. Weight reductions and efficiency will guide the the MOM into existence. Boeing will have an preponderance of "Off-Its Shelf" parts and engineering compliment going into the MOM. If Boeing has already sunk costs into R&D then use it if applicable. If a vendor has a better solution use it. Mentioning losing weight again becomes redundant but is the critical feature of the 5,000 mile MOM and that makes it viable in the world market place.