787-10 to come later than suggested

The Boeing 787-10 will come much later than most suggestions, according to this article by Bloomberg.It was widely thought that Boeing Commercial would go to the Board by year-end to seek an Authority to Offer (ATO) the plane by year-end of next year, with an EIS perhaps around 2016.

Boeing officials bragged that this model would have superior economics and would be an “A330-300 killer.” It would also replace the 777-200ER.

Now, according to Bloomberg, no move to the Board is apparently imminent and the prospect of the EIS moves to the end of this decade.

What does this mean for the 777X? Does this mean the X timeline moves up? Boeing has been saying it’s not in a hurry due to what it believes to be uncertainty over the Airbus A350-1000.

Update: Boeing contacted us to say that nothing has changed in its timeline as outlined in the news article.

65 comments on “787-10 to come later than suggested

  1. could this lengthening of product cycles be a result of the comfortable duopoly that’s been established?
    I know product cycles have been slowing down for decades, partly due to increased complexity, but where is the incentive for the OEM’s to improve their product when they have a 50/50 split between their portfolio’s. Yes, you can gamble and try to gain some larger slice of the pie – but the risks involved, combined with the fact that gov’t support to both parties is being restricted ever more, make that unattractive. Also, the selling out of production slots for at least half a decade means many orders will be driven by availability rather than the actual product features.

    I do not see a similar cycle delay automotive – indicating this is not due solely to complexity.
    I do see something similar in processors – where there is also a duopoly.

    • Automotive industry today is working from platforms.
      ( and morphing some details is not really a “product cycle” )

      Look at possible constraints.
      manpower ( how simple a stretch would a -10 be, how much will the next new NB absorb? )
      manufacture ( is there a path to the originally expected production cost
      or will the Dreamliner production (method) run into diminishing returns on a high level )

      If Boeing pushes a 777 upgrade in lieu of the “simple” -10 derivative barrels might be a cul de sac.

      • I agree with Uwe — platforms are a big factor. And automotive industry is working on mass production, the top platforms (such as those used by VW group) are used to build millions of cars per year. Meanwhile, the production for the top aircraft models is still less than two aircraft per day — this is less than even hand-built cars such as Rolls Royce, Bentley or Ferrari, and not comparable to volume manufacturers.

  2. I am guessing there are various factors at play here; cost, resources, risk, requirement.

    Pure speculation by an outsider would be that they don’t feel the need or pressure to do this yet (what they have clearly stated in the article) but I would also suspect that they don’t have the resources for this. They still have the 787-9, the Max and the Tanker to sort out over the next 5 to 8 years (depending on if they have things back under control or not). I also believe the boardroom might be balking at more programs until they get better cashflow (some will point out the glowing quarterly reports, but I still believe that this is part of the reason for pushing the 787-10 back) and, of course, who knows what else they are really planning for the future (777-?)?

    I am somewhat confused over something here. I was always under the impression that the 787-8 and -9 were supposed to be the A330 killers. Why has it now fallen on the 787-10 to kill the A330-300?

    • “I am somewhat confused over something here. I was always under the impression that the 787-8 and -9 were supposed to be the A330 killers. Why has it now fallen on the 787-10 to kill the A330-300?”

      You noticed that, did you….

      • Your confusion is justified, Boeings marketing boasting has always been that the 787-8 & 9 would in effect compromise demand for the 330.

        For a host of reasons this has not occured, not least that the 330 airframe continues to present EADS with opportunities to improve it’s operating perameters & this work continues apace, price comparisons 330 vs 787 at todays less frenzied airframe BOGOF costs & realising profitabilty favour EADS by a significant margin, constantly moving crude prices enhance the 330 option.

        In contrast if we believe what the industry is or perhaps not telling us, Boeing still struggles to realise it’s promised performance figures, with a number of issues still being of concern & a complete unknown.

        History proves that radical design changes are by their very nature riddled with problems the 787 certainly represents the worst recent case scenario, but the if it hadn’t been Boeing it may well have been Airbus.

        It seems that the 787 may well be the first & last composite airframe of it’s type & size, too much too soon perhaps.

    • The 787-9 is the same length as the A330-300, weighs less and can carry an extra passenger in each row. It has more modern engines and systems. It’s hard to see how it wouldn’t kill the A330*. I guess the -10 is making doubly sure. Like using a bazooka after you have already plunged the knife in.

      *once the weapon is available to use of course

      • ———————————-A332—A333—787-8—787-9
        Cabin length between
        doors 1 and 4—————-39.78—45.1—-37.26—43.36

        A330-200: 3 additional rows of Y class seats over that of the 787-8.

        A330-300: 2 additional rows of Y class seats over that of the 787-9

        In a typical two class set-up and with the A330 at 8 abreast and the 787 at 9 abreast, the A332 and the 787-8 will have roughly the same number of seats, while the 787-9 will have up to 10 more seats than that of the A330-300.

        The A330-300 IMO is competative with the 787-9 on routes with sector lengths of less than 4500 nm; even when Y-class on the 789 is configured in a nine abreast configuration.

      • The A330-300 is competitive with the 787-9 as long as the latter is not readily available, I agree. That’s actually a tribute to the A330: it’s not worth waiting for the 787. But the 9 abreast versus 8 abreast thing is the killer. Nothing to do with technology. If you can add an extra seat per row while keeping the other attributes constant, you have a winner.

        The 787 was originally marketed as an 8 across plane. It was at the point when Air India reckoned they would go 9 across that the A350 Mark I disappeared into the dust. Ironic, given Boeing’s later issues with Air India.

      • With just 10 more seats the 787-9 will only beat the A330-300 with single digits on CASK on intermediate range routes.

        Price will be the weapon of choice for Airbus when the 787-9 should finally be produced in greater numbers during the latter part of the decade.

        Perhaps Boeing should have matched the cabin length of the A330-300 with the 787-9.

      • It seems that in a 9-abreast configuration, the seat cushion widths are 16.9 inches (787) and 16.7 inches (A330). Not a huge difference in my opinion — both would be rather painful sardine cans from a pax point of view.

      • That’s not correct. :-)

        A330 at nine abreast: Two 16.5″ aisles, twelve 2″ armrests and nine seats with a cushion width of 16.4″. No wonder Airbus classifies the A330 at nine abreast as “charter class”. ;-)

        787 at nine abreast: Two 18″ aisles, twelve 2″ armrests and nine seats with a cushion width of 17.2″.

        Interestingly, on the original A350 Airbus planned to use reprofiled thinner fuselage frames around the windows in order to reduce the thickness of both the fuselage frames, in addition to a slightly thinner lining, which would result in two extra inches of width on both sides of the original BMW-designed cabin. Hence the A330-derived A350 at nine abreast would have had two 17″ aisles, twelve 2″ armrests and nine seats with a cushion width of 16.7″.

        In comparison, the current 777-300ER at 10 abreast: Two 17″ aisles, thirteen 2″ armrests and 10 seats with a cushion width of 17″ inches.

      • OK, let me include my references:

        A330: 16.7-inch seat cushion width, aisle width unspecified:

        http://www.airbus.com/aircraftfamilies/passengeraircraft/a330family/a330-300/cabin-layout/

        787: 18-inch aisle, 16.9-inch seat cushion width (in the QR 9-across configuration)

        http://www.boeing.com/commercial/airports/acaps/787sec2.pdf

        http://www.qatarairways.com/english_global/press-release.page?pr_id=pressrelease_pressrelease_20120307

        The Airbus number is close (16.4″ vs 16.7″) but if the 787 really has a seat cushion width of 17.2″, why would QR advertise it as only 16.9″?

      • thysi, from your 2nd link, please take a look at page 11

        http://www.boeing.com/commercial/airports/acaps/787sec2.pdf

        9-abreast has two 18 inch aisles and three triplets of seats with each one having a width of 59.6 inches.

        59.6″ = (4 x 2 inch-armrests) + (3 x 17.2″ seat-cushion-width)

        As for the A330, please take a look at the A330 aircraft characteristics for airport planning document:

        (2-5-0 – Page 2)

        http://www.airbus.com/fileadmin/media_gallery/files/tech_data/AC/Airbus-AC_A330_Dec11.pdf

        9-abreast has two 16.5 inch aisles (N) and three triplets of seats with each one having a width of 57.1 inches (M).

        If the seat cushion width is 16.7 inches, then the width of the armrests must be reduced to 1.75 inches while retaining the aisles width of 16.5 inches.

        I don’t know why QR advertise the 787 Y-class seat cushion width at 16.9 inches. Perhaps they want to match the A350’s aisle width of 18.35 inches. ;-) That leaves 2 inch extra of width; or an armrest width of 2.17 inches.

      • Clearly the numbers don’t all match. And with critical pieces of information missing (like armrest widths) we may never know who is “right”.

        But, regardless, at 9 abreast, both the A330 and 787 will have seat cushion widths in the 16.5-17″ range. And to me, anything in that range is sardine class!

      • Come on thysi, the numbers match. The only reliable data are from Airbus’ and Boeing’s airplane characteristics data for general airport planning. :-)

        Again, the 787 in a standard 9-abreast configuration has 17.2 seat cushion widths, twelve 2 inch armrests and two 18 inch aisles. Some customers may opt for wider aisles and narrower seats, or wider seats and narrower aisles, but that doesn’t change the fact that the 787 is significantly more comfortable than the A330 at 9-abreast. Of course, the A330 will have wider seats than the 787 at 9-abreast when the A330 is configured in the normal 8-abreast configuration.

        Finally, I’d rather fly for a few hours aboard an Air Asia A330 which has a 9-abreast configuration, than on a 15 hour flight aboard an Emirates 777-200LR which has a 10-abreast
        configuration and seat cushion widths of 17 inches and 17 inch aisles.

      • I would challenge the description of a 17.2-inch (based on your doucment choice!) wide seat as “comfortable.” I could maybe accept “less uncomfortable” … :)

  3. A couple of years ago I thought there was a vibe that making the double stretched 787-10 was very challenging and that the business case for Boeing would be unfavorable. If I remember correctly the consensus was that it would be most likely that the 787-10 would not be built.
    In reaction to the XWB-1000 plans it seemed that Boeing started to openly talk about the 787-10 and all reservations from outsiders seemed to have vanished.
    I know most readers here like to have links to substantiate the above, I’m sorry that I’m not able to deliver those.
    My main question is do you think that this ‘gut feeling’ is correct and that there were reservations about the 787-10, that somehow these vanished (after Boeing started talking about the model more), and that the current delay could very well be connected to these initial reservations.
    In other words how complex is designing the double stretch in reality and does it seem to be viable for Boeing?

  4. Realistically it’s going to take Boeing to the end of the decade just to clear the existing 787 backlog. And that assumes they don’t sell a single other 787-8 or 9. Whereas they would sell loads if only they could get them to customers within a sensible timeframe. The -10 doesn’t help Boeing commercially at all in the medium term.

    The 777 is less certain. The 777 had a stunning sales year in 2011. Before that, and this year so far too, Boeing have been running down the backlog.

  5. Aspire Aviation has a long piece on Cathay Pacific’s fuel cost problems,
    (http://www.aspireaviation.com/2012/08/13/gleam-of-hope-for-cathay-pacific-in-stormy-skies/.), including this::

    “This morning we got board approval for 10 new additional A350-1000s that will come through in 2020. This is important to us because these new fleet are much more fuel efficient. They’re about 17% less fuel burn than the 777[-300ERs], the A350-1000s,” Cathay Pacific finance director Martin Murray commented.

    To my knowledge, this is the first confirmation by a major airline of Airbus’ claim that the A350-1000 will be a viable replacement for the -300ER. Boeing has been on the fence for a while, waiting to understand what the -1000’s specs and appeal will be. Now they have an answer, and one at that that clearly means that if B has to choose between the 787-10 and the 777X, it is time to go for the latter.

    • Reading Aviation Aspire is like listening to a preacher who can’t stop talking. Their long winded nuance crammed sentences and paragraphs obscures the information they’re trying to convey.

      More to the point, Cathay’s -1000 order might just be Swire’s boost in assistance to the UK’s Airbus wing plant. The Broughton site has been embarrassing and costly to Airbus lately with A380 wing cracks, and A350 wing CFRP panels to metal join industrialization.

      Surely, opening a competing wing facility on the continent for the next new aircraft would be a welcome move by many within Airbus.

      • RH Hastings :
        Reading Aviation Aspire is like listening to a preacher who can’t stop talking. Their long winded nuance crammed sentences and paragraphs obscures the information they’re trying to convey.

        Is that a praphrasation of “TL;DR”?

        RH Hastings :
        More to the point, Cathay’s -1000 order might just be Swire’s boost in assistance to the UK’s Airbus wing plant. The Broughton site has been embarrassing and costly to Airbus lately with A380 wing cracks, and A350 wing CFRP panels to metal join industrialization.

        As you are suggesting that Swire Group, a private company and 100% shareholder of Swire Pacific, in turn a 40% shareholder of Cathay Pacific, influenced the decision to convert 16 A350-900 to -1000 and order an additional 10 -1000 in order to help the Broughton plant of Airbus SAS, a company that Swire has no shares in, I assume you can provide some evidence for this?

        RH Hastings :
        Surely, opening a competing wing facility on the continent for the next new aircraft would be a welcome move by many within Airbus.

        Again, some evidence would be nice. As far as I can see, none of the issues you mentioned are actually related to the Broughton plant itself or its staff, but to product design/material – they relate to the plant because that just happens to be the place where Airbus makes its wings.

      • RH, when you can write Chinese as well as Aspire can write English, then perhaps you have room to criticize. In the meantime, such comments violate our Reader Comment guidelines. Knock it off.

    • Still, Boeing seems to be beating around the bush.

      AW&ST/July 9, 2012 (page 84):

      The other complication with defining the 777X remains the status of the A350-1000. “There is an ambiguity around what the competition is doing, and when you’re making an investment of this size, determining what they’re doing is important,” says Piasecki. Although the outline speculation of the big Airbus twin has been fixed before, key customers such as Emirates and Qatar continue to demand improvements in range, payload and fuel burn. To truly compete, “the A350-1000 has to be something that it isn’t today,” she says.

      So for the moment, despite would-be customers’ growing pressure on Boeing to act sooner rather than later, Piasecki says she believes “we have time on the 777X program. We won’t put our entry-into-service (around the end of the decade) at risk.”

      During last year’s Paris Air Show, Piasecki was seemingly convinced that the 737NG was competitive with the neo, and now, according to her, the A350-1000 has to be “something that it isn’t today” – whatever that’s supposed to mean.

      • .. the A350-1000 has to be “something that it isn’t today” …
        sowing FUD. similar to the NSA phantom.
        Afaics it worked for a short time last year for selling 777-*.
        The -10 too may have its fans limited to airliners.net ;-)

      • Boeing knows that when the conceptual 777-9X is supposed to EIS, Airbus could already be working on an all new aircraft designed to bridge the gap between the A350-1000 and a next generation stretched A380 incorporating RR’s “2025 preferred system concept UltraFan engines”*** having a TSFC improvement of up to 10 percent over that of the Trent XWB engine. In 2017 Airbus should have enough freed-up engineering resources to focus on an all new project.

        Boeing needs to carefully elaborate which strategy to pursue:

        A) Develop a 70-80 percent “all new” 777X and risk being overtaken by an all new Airbus family of twin-aisle aircraft -10 abreast in economy class and possibly having a short 747-style upper deck – covering capacities from 400 to 500 seats, and with A380 stretch models covering capacities from 600-700 seats (in a three class configuration).

        B) Develop an all new WB aircraft family – possible one with a 747-style upper deck – and not risk having to throw away the $6 to $8 billion possible required to develop the 777X family.

        Using largely the same procedure as was tried out last year with the 737NG vs. the neo, Boeing is IMO trying to buy time, since they are seemingly not very coherent on the matter.

        *** AW&ST/July 9, 2012 (page 88)

  6. I just think an A359 lower 20-25 tons MTOW , with some wheight rip out adjustments will easily make it with the B789-10 !

    This was the initial Airbus project, 4 years ago … and may be the next step after the A351 !
    The 6000+ Nm versions of all the A350, may be still in the sleeves of JL …
    Just allow Airbus the necessary time .. to get off the woods, with the initial A350 program !

    Surely, if Airbus don’t go seriously “NEO” with the A330, we shall see later a shorter new wing to fit with a 6500 nm version of the A358 and may be too with a A359 with lower MTOW !

  7. not sure, this is reliable news -of the 787-10 pushed to the right end of decade – if true , it is a case of “B going there again”-this on and off mode ;either they are not sure of the ” 330 killer” any more with a simple stretch or the market is telling them that they need to upgrade the 777 300 ER or else… Any case , this back and forth -earlier seen in Max ,hopefully will not be repeated and B has learnt a lesson. Meanwhile, 330 is getting better and better- range wise , already at the top on efficiency. This news is a clear positive for A.

  8. I made a comment a while back about Boeing’s seeming lack of urgency. Now when I see them explicitly saying “we’re not in a hurry” to get a major project started, that really worries me. I particularly question their feeling that there’s no pressure from customers to get the 787-10 out, after reading this http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/istat-2012-lufthansa-alc-vie-to-be-787-10x-launch-customer-369681/ earlier in the year. If the “no hurry” attitude on the 7810 is due to perceiving a more urgent need for the 777x, I can understand that, but then they need to get the 777x launched and moving asap. Either way, Boeing really needs to shake off this “no hurry” mentality, or Airbus is going to end up eating a lot more of their lunch than they should be.

  9. They have never been in great hurry to introduce another widebody since several years now.
    The abandon of the A340 leaves the door wide open for the 777-300ER. The successive delays on the A350XWB program may have comforted their situation further.

    Do they need to hurry today? The answer is obviously NO.

    • And the imminent, albeit delayed EIS of the A350-900 means Airbus will have a virtual monopoly on the 300-320 seat segment until Boeing gets the 787-10 out there, which even at the earliest cannot happen before 2017. That means Boeing will basicly be in the same position for that segment as Airbus has been in the 350-seat segment for the last decade. Sound fun?

      Yes, the 777-300ER has a clear field right now, but it’s obvious it can’t hold up against the A350-1000. So the more lag time there is between the EIS of the A350-1000 and the 777x, the longer Airbus will be able to dominate that segment. Obviously it’s not in Boeing’s interest to push programs along before they’re ready and end up incurring more 787-style delays, but not even bothering to move the design forward expeditiously is simply squandering time they can never get back.

      Any business is about getting the best products to market as fast as possible, relative to competitors. There’s a reason for the saying “time is money”. They need to hurry.

      • Boeing has already spent a lot of money on the 787 and it won’t be profitable for at least another ten years, if ever. They are now spending more money on the 737 MAX. Soon they will spend even more money on the 777X.

        Since both their financial and engineering resources are limited they have to make painful choices in order to remain profitable, even if that makes them somewhat less competitive.

      • What is abundantly clear is that the A330-300 will be competetive with the 787-9 on most, if not all of the routes which the A333 operates on today. If Boeing had optimised the 787-9 with a maximum range of 6800 nm and not 8000 nm, the 789 would have had a MTOW similar to that of the 787-8. Hence it would not have to carry around excess weight not needed on the routes flown by today’s A333. In short, the A333 was optimised for the A-market while the 787-9 is optimised for the B-market. If the 787-9 had been optimised for the A-market the situation wouldn’t be nearly so rosy for the A333.

        Since Airbus can price the A333 competitively – and the fact that open 787-9 production slots will only be available in reasonable numbers towards the end of the decade – Airbus should IMO have little difficulty maintaining the current A330 production output for the rest of this decade and into the next.

        What is also abundantly clear is that the 777-300ER will not be competitive with the A350-1000. In short, the 77W was optimised for the B-market and so is the A350-1000. B-market economics is significantly more sensitive to excess weight.

        What all this means is that despite some of the dire predictions that have been floating around in the blogosphere for the last 8 years or so, that the 787 would “kill” the A330; at the end of the day it nevertheless may start to sink in, for some, that the original $3.5 -$4 billion A333/A343 program – which now lives on primarily in the gradually evolved A333, can be competive with one major product of the $20-$25 billion*** 787 program, while the original $12 billion 777-200 program – which now lives on primarily in the 777-300ER – will not be competitive with the A350-1000 unless the 777-family undergoes an extensive/expensive upgrade.

        *** My estimate. It’s difficult though to estimate the real costs of the 787 program.

      • OV, repeating this “A333 will be competitive with the 789″ mantra in multiple comments does not make it any less dead wrong. The 787 is and will be substantially better than the A330 across the entirety of both families on all segment lengths. http://www.aspireaviation.com/2012/07/10/airbus-is-right-on-a330-improvement-strategy/ The 788 beats the A332, despite the latter’s additional seats, the 789 will substantially beat the 333, and the 7810 (whenever Boeing gets around to it) will blow the 333 out of the water. The only thing that’s been keeping the A330 in the ball game has been the delays and lack of available slots with the 787 and A350. That will probably last a few more years (hence the minor A330 upgrades), but ultimately the newer planes will kill the A330; even a neo can’t close the gap.

        I agree that the 777-300ER cannot match the A350-1000, which, as I said, is why Boeing needs to get moving on the 777x as well.

      • Brian, fuel costs as a percentage of direct operating costs (DOC) vary significantly based on the length of the flight. The longer the flight, the higher the fuel costs as a percentage of the direct operating cost. Hence, with continued high fuel prices, long-haul flights represent the biggest challenge to profitable operations because the share of fuel on these flights, compared with all the other fees and costs, is the largest.

        That’s why the fuel burn differential between the 777-300ER and the A350-1000, on long-haul flights, is more significant – to the detriment of the 77W – than it is between the A330-300 and the 787-9 on medium-haul flights.

        Compared to the A333, the 787-9 will have higher airport fees (due to the higher MTOW) and higher lease charges, but lower fuel costs and slightly less maintenance costs. Still, the DOC differential between the 787-9 and the A333, on medium-haul flights, shouldn’t be much more than 5 percent, in favour of the former. Hence, the A333 IMO will remain competitive for quite some time.

        Compared to the A350-1000, the 777-300ER will have higher airport fees (due to the higher MTOW), significantly higher fuel costs as a percentage of DOC on long-haul flights, higher maintenance costs, but lower lease charges. Hence, the DOC differential between the A350-1000 and the 77W, on long haul flights, could well be more than 10 percent, in favour of the former, which would seem to indicate that the 77W will see very few sales post A350-1000 EIS.

        Finally, the A330-300 production infrastructure has long since been paid for. Manufacturing costs have been going down as the production rate have increased. As of today, Airbus’ weapon is early delivery slots, while in the mid-term the weapon of choice will be price.

        As of today, Boeing’s weapon against the A350-1000 is early delivery slots. However, after 2017/2018 price would not be an effective weapon against the A350-1000 due to the likely double digit DOC betterment of the A350-1000 over the 77W.

    • Why should Airbus “hurry”?

      Clearly, Boeing will soon pass Airbus in production output and once again become the largest OEM in the LCA business. Meanwhile, Airbus should be producing more than 600 NB and WB units per year from 2013 to 2016. From 2017 and onwards they should pass the milestone of an annual production output of more than 700 units per year, due primarily to the production ramp-up of the A350 program. I’m not so sure Boeing will be number one then. Again, why “hurry”?

  10. Phil :
    Boeings marketing boasting has always been that the 787-8 & 9 would in effect compromise demand for the 330. For a host of reasons this has not occurred.

    This may explain why Airbus isn’t in a hurry to do an A330neo.

  11. RH Hastings :
    The Broughton site has been embarrassing and costly to Airbus lately with A380 wing cracks, and A350 wing CFRP panels to metal join industrialization. Surely, opening a competing wing facility on the continent for the next new aircraft would be a welcome move by many within Airbus.

    The A380 wing was not designed in Broughton, but only manufactured there. The A350 wing problem was just a software issue that has since been rectified.

    More competition would only make Airbus less competitive. Wing design and manufacturing is an expertise that Airbus would not want to lose. For the same reason Boeing wants to keep the wing design/manufacturing in-house for the 777X.

  12. “And the imminent, albeit delayed EIS of the A350-900 means Airbus will have a virtual monopoly on the 300-320 seat segment until Boeing gets the 787-10 out there, which even at the earliest cannot happen before 2017.”

    I agree with Brian. The core of Boeing WB issue is the center of the market : 300 seats.

    The 777 did great in 2011, but only the -300ER. The 777-200ER/LR backlogs dried up a while ago. The A350-900 and A330-300 took almost all of this segment. Boeing has to respond with either a 787 stretch or a drastic 777 upgrade.

    The financial / supply chain / PR damage incurred by the 787 & 747-8 programs didn’t just vanish to be quickly forgotten and it isn’t so that resources are there like there’s no yesterday. Boeing is recovering & 2 programs seem to much next to the MAX and 787-9.

    The larger 787-9 wing was cancelled a few yrs ago and I’m not sure the 787-8 wing is good enough for the -10 too.

    http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/boeing-ups-787-weights-shrinks-9-wing-336055/

    Despite Piasecki saying Boeings thinking has shifted this year on payload-range I think the -8 wing and GENX also have their limitations..

    http://leehamnews.wordpress.com/2012/07/06/boeings-twin-aisle-product-strategy-provides-better-segment-coverage-than-airbus/

    The orchestrated downplaying of the A350-1000 has not convinced CX and I see airlines like UA and SQ converting -900 to -1000s later on. Then there is airlines like BA, AF/KL, LH, DL, AA and QF who will likely order large twins.

    Boeing saying they already have the best, have time to think, the competitor is still undefined sounds familiar to me and ended with panic before. Also the assumed loyalty of their customers has bitten them before and probably won’t end soon.

  13. I think for the 787-10X (that EK was pushing for around 2005..) a reworked A330-300, benefiting from the newest GE, PW or RR engines is always around the corner. That makes the A330 a moving target for Boeing.

    Some people argue Airbus will never do it because of the A350-800. I don’t agree;
    – the A350-800 isn’t a stellar seller, little to loose
    – the A350-800 will be a very long range / payload-range aircraft, contrary to the A330.
    – the A330 serves markets the A350 doesn’t, MRTT, -200F, -300F that might benefit

    I’m sure the A330 team has detailed specs for new engines, sharklets, cockpit and cabin enhancements ready. Putting them on the table is a strategic issue more then a technical / ROI one.

    E.g. Fedex could move the business case. (hundreds of Airbus/DC10/MD11s). Assembled in the US as planned before. http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/kc-x-cancellation-nixes-mobile-move-for-a330f-final-assembly-315841/

    • I know we’ve gone back and forth on this one all summer on Aspire, but I really don’t think an A330neo is a long-term plan for Airbus.

      – even re-engined, the A333 cannot match up to the 787-10, which is the plane Airbus will ultimately have to compete with in the 300-seat segment
      – Airbus may be willing to write off the A358, but a 333neo would also start to infringe on the A359’s market as well (the 333 is actually closer in size to the 359 than the 358), and Airbus definitely won’t want that
      – the A350-800/900 are the products Airbus will need to use to compete with the 787-10, so if either or both of those models are weak enough for any 330 variant to compete with on any segment length, they’ve already failed their primary mission.

  14. RH Hastings The Broughton site has been embarrassing and costly to Airbus lately with A380 wing cracks, and A350 wing CFRP panels to metal join industrialization.
    Surely, opening a competing wing facility on the continent for the next new aircraft would be a welcome move by many within Airbus.

    What utter nonsense, quite how you come to this sweeping generalisation about the Brougton site & EADS opinion of it is a complete mystery.

  15. The A350 is late, like so many other recent A/Ps have been, but aviation history
    confirms that when a new a/p comes on the market in a certain category, it is
    and HAS TO BE BETTER than any other A/P in that category, already available!

    That is why the all new carbon-fiber A350, was specifically designed with 1) a
    wider cabin, 2) a bigger wing, 3) a new RR engine, especially designed for the
    A350, 4) more range, 5) a lower seat-mile cost than any other A/P in that
    category and 6) designed to be a serious challenge to all existing A/Ps, like the
    777, the 767, the 787 and even their own best-selling A-330.

    Therefore, the A350 may well force Boeing to shut down the commercial 767 line,
    build an all new 777 and forget about offering the 787-10!

  16. keesje :</strongI agree with Brian.

    Wow, am I dreaming? :)

    I do think Boeing has the near-future product lineup to do very well in all the widebody segments below the VLA, but the burden is on them to get those products out in a decent time frame.

  17. I think a second generation Trent 1000 or GENX, higher BPR, sharklets, earodynamic enhancements can improve fuel efficiency of the A330 realisticly by 15%. If Airbus succeeds in making 9 abreast acceptable for flights up to 9 hours and/or adds a few frames, a few more years at a production rate of 10 aircraft a month might be likely. And a good idea.

  18. Thank you Keesje !

    The only serious problem I see for an A330NEO, is timing now, Airbus has only 3-4 years left for a very successful A330-NEO EIS … and now, at sight, nothing is moving !
    I think that none engine, GEnx, or T1000 really can fit easily without heavy and costly adaptations … may be apart, the under-performing GEnx2B !

    And the motorist’s may be unwilling, or enable to adapt and certify their engines for this time frame !

    Airbus maybe tempted, by the very new Trent XWB from the A358, but it seems to have too much fan diameter to fit easily under the wing

  19. `And the motorist’s may be unwilling, or enable to adapt and certify their engines for this time frame `

    I think GE might be interested to regain some ground with Airbus, after missing out on the A350 and Boeing inviting RR for the 777X.

    `I think that none engine, GEnx, or T1000 really can fit easily without heavy and costly adaptations … may be apart, the under-performing GEnx2B !´

    Airbus fitted the PW4000, CF6-80, Trent 700, Trent 900, CFM56 and Trent 500 under this wing position, so its specifics are well known. Apart from that they specified the GENX for the original A350 yrs ago..

    http://www.netcomposites.com/news/airbus-launches-new-a350-with-genx-engine/3361

    and it didn´t stop there

    http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/farnborough+genx+offered+for+future+a330s-208087/

    The technical feasibility of adding various fan diameters to the 3 spool Trent has become a RR specialism over the yrs.

    Airbus is very busy with the A350 and to a lesser degree A400M and NEO. Still an A330 NEO seems a strategic option rather then a technical challenge. Boeings 787-9 seems to be the biggest competitor. Similar sized as the A330-300. The 787-10 would be a step up aiming at reducing CASM and optimizing the platform for TATL and intra Asia markets, not matching the A330-300.

    I think Airbus would prefer to sell 600 additional A330 over 200 A350-800s..

    • .. Airbus fitted the PW4000, CF6-80, Trent 700, Trent 900, CFM56 and Trent 500 under this wing position..

      My understanding is that the pylon/engine interface is the “common” point on Airbus planes.

  20. Hello Keesje !
    I would say ” Heavy modifications for the engines ” And a large certification process !
    Sure adapting a new engine on the A330 wing is not rocket science, if it stay in the 110″ !
    – This condition eliminates the Trent XWB unless RR is willing to heavily modificate this engine !
    – The Trent 1000 would need à bleed air intake, and a new gear box, not that simple, since all the engine parameters should be modificated ! An important certification and mechanical task … to cope with !
    – Assuming GE wants seriously enter this Airbus market (And I don’t think so, their preference, as usual, may be protecting their B787-B777 market first) GE, may cope with the same hurdles , since Airbus will not accept a GEnx 2B , lagging at least 3-4% behind the GEnx1B perf’s !
    GE will have to present a very competitive engine, to get Airbus acceptance OK !

    So I’m not so optimistic, given the shrinking time frame allowed !

    IMO, Airbus may wait for the results of the TXWB core trials and certification to make a definitive move … since the future A388 is also implicated, standard, higher and lower MTOW versions included !
    May be it is not more complicated to shrink the TXWB fan 5-6 inches … than to convert a T1000 to bleed air …
    The few % SFC bonus, of the TXWB, vs the T1000, may largely compensate the diameter setback … and be finally a welcomed option !

  21. The 787-10 seems like a more low hanging fruit than the 777x. If the 737-900 can do most of what the 757 could, then the 787-9 can fill the the 777 replacement market with its smaller size and greater flexibility. The next CFRP wing to build is a 140′ span for a new small to medium size aircraft.

Leave a Reply: Note Reader Comment Rules

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s