UPDATED: Boeing posts quarterly loss; increases Commercial production rates

By Bryan Corliss

July 26, 2023, (c) Leeham News — The Boeing Co. on Wednesday reported a quarterly loss of $99 million, due in part to spending tied to production rate increases in its Commercial Airplanes division.

Boeing said that rates on its 737 line in Renton are increasing to 38 a month. The 787 program has increased rates to four a month, with a plan to increase that to five a month by the end of this year.

Boeing is working with suppliers to get rates up to 50 a month on the 737 line sometime in 2025-26. CEO Dave Calhoun said during Wednesday earning call that demand is there for even higher rates.

“I’d love to get to 60 and the market is there for it,” he said. “The industry is short of airplanes by a relatively large margin.”

However, Boeing and its suppliers need to stabilize production at currently projected rates before considering going beyond what’s already been announced, the CEO said. “We’re going to work hard on stability.”

For this year, Boeing said it expects to deliver between 400 and 450 737s, along with 70 to 80 787s.

  • Deliveries up at BCA
  • China: Boeing hopes for delivery restart
  • 777-X production to restart in 2023
  • Calhoun ‘intent on proving’ trans-sonic truss 
  • BDS continues to struggle

Deliveries up at BCA

Commercial revenues increased 41% during the quarter, to $8.8 billion. However, the unit took a loss of $383 million, which the company attributed to “abnormal costs and period expenses, including research and development” that was related to the production rate increase.

Boeing’s Commercial division delivered 138 aircraft during the quarter, which was up 12% from the same period last year. It announced a net of 460 firm orders for the quarter, including the 220-jet order from Air India and the Ryan Air deal for 150 737s, plus options on up to 150 737-10s.

Demand from airlines “remains very strong,” Calhoun said. Boeing has a number of challenges, but is making progress, he added. “The supply chain notably is the most significant but it’s steadily getting better.”

Supply chain issues also are affecting Boeing’s profitable Global Services unit, the CEO said. “Everything they do,” is affected by parts shortages.

“My prediction is it’s going to be a while,” Calhoun said. “Everybody’s fighting for the next part.”

Given those challenges, it will be a few months before Boeing is consistently delivering planes at the new rate, CFO Brian West said. Once deliveries have stabilized, Boeing will announce its next rate break, he said. Suppliers already have a master schedule that outlines the company’s expected path toward 50/month.

The quick resolution of last month’s strike at Spirit AeroSystems means it will have no disruption on Boeing’s deliveries, West said. Rework of the incorrectly installed stabilizers will be completed this quarter and could push back a few deliveries into the fourth quarter, he said.

China: Boeing hopes for delivery restart

The Chinese government has allowed airlines there to put their 737 MAX jets into service and those airlines have put about 90% of the planes back in service, the Boeing executives said.

Boeing still has some 220 completed 737 MAX jets in its inventory, of which 85 currently are earmarked for Chinese customers, West said.

Calhoun noted that Boeing had — after consulting with Chinese airlines — remarketed some of the completed 737s from its backlog. He  said he is optimistic that China’s government will allow deliveries to restart, so that the remaining 85 can be delivered.  In the meantime, Boeing will a “free-trade beacon” urging both the United States and China toward closer trade ties, he said.

West said the company expects to have all 220 remaining 737 MAX jets delivered by the end of 2024.

777-X production to resume before year’s end

Boeing plans to resume production of its long-stalled 777-X before the end of this year, the executives said.

That shouldn’t be read as a sign U.S. and European regulators are on the verge of certifying the new widebody, they said.

But Calhoun said that with demand for aircraft being so strong, Boeing wants to “simply get ahead of the production curve.” 

LNA reported in June that Boeing had completed more than 90% of the test flights it plans for gathering data for regulators, and that the plane had “performed very, very well.” Boeing is seeking an amended type certificate for the 777-X, which will have new engines, wings and a cockpit compared to previous versions. The program was launched in 2013.

Calhoun ‘intent on proving’ trans-sonic truss brace

Calhoun said Boeing is “intent on proving” the viability of the trans-sonic truss brace technology it is developing with NASA. “I do think it’ll see service,” he said.

The CEO said it is possible that a plane based on the X-66A design could enter commercial service with current-generation jet engines, but given that Boeing is looking to develop a new aircraft that’s 20% to 30% more efficient, “we’d prefer to have a bigger fan diameter,” he added, “and maybe even an open rotor someday.”

“If they behave like they did in the wind tunnel, we’re in a pretty good place,” Calhoun said.

BDS continues to struggle

Boeing reported its Defense, Space and Security unit lost $527 million for the quarter, compared to a profit of $71 million in the second quarter last year. (We looked at problems facing BDS earlier this week.)

The company said the Defense unit was impacted by “labor instability and supply chain disruption” involving some programs. Delays on the Commercial Crew space program, the T-7A Red Hawk trainer and MQ-25 drone added $514 million in losses.

West said the company was dealing with some BDS production lines that “almost went dark” during the pandemic. Now Boeing and its suppliers both are trying to find the right people with the right skills to do very complicated work.

Boeing’s Defense business still is constrained by major fixed-price contracts it agreed to with the government, Calhoun said. “We’re going to have to live within this envelope, he said. “We do see progress. It does take time”

Boeing also noted that it had paid down its total debt by $3.1 billion, leaving it with $53.2 billion still on its books.





103 Comments on “UPDATED: Boeing posts quarterly loss; increases Commercial production rates

  1. From Table 3 of the earnings release:
    Cash burn in Q2 was $1B…which means that a large part of the $3.1B debt paydown in Q2 was offset by deposit receipts (particularly from the big Air India and Saudi deals). The company explicitly states this just below Table 2 in the earnings release (emphasis added):
    “Operating cash flow was $2.9 billion in the quarter reflecting higher commercial deliveries **and favorable receipt timing** (Table 2).”


    At BCA:

    (1) Unit revenue was $8.840B/136 = $65M. This is an improvement over Q2 2022 ($51.72M), probably due to the greater number of 787s in the mix, and also the lower proportion of ex-inventory frames in the 2023 deliveries so far.
    (In 2023, 33 widebodies were delivered in Q2, versus 16 in Q1.)

    (2) One can calculate a rudimentary “EBIT” by adding the debt servicing costs in Q2 ($621M) back onto the operational loss of $383M — which yields an “EBIT” figure of $238M. Unit “EBIT” is then $1.75M. This is a big improvement over the 2022 figure of $270k, but still a fraction of the figure at AB (ca. $6M last year). The improvement may — to some extent — be due to the much lower proportion of ex-inventory in the Q2 deliveries compared to last year.

    Unit margin (before debt servicing) then becomes 1.75/65 = just 2.69%.

    This calculation is actually generous, because only a portion of the debt servicing costs is due to the mess at BCA — the rest being due to BDS. So, in reality, less then $621M should be added back onto the BCA loss.

    In the end, it all gets burned up by debt servicing costs.

    • Thanks for those relevant excerpts from the second-quarter report.

    • And now for some equivalent figures at AB Commercial Aircraft, using the earnings figures just released for H1 2023 (316 deliveries).

      Revenue: €19.982B
      EBIT: €1.523B
      EBIT (adjusted): €2.256B

      Unit revenue: €63.23M ($69.66M)
      Unit EBIT: €4.82M ($5.3M)
      Unit EBIT (adjusted): €7.14M ($7.85M)

      Unit margin: 6.93%
      Unit margin (adjusted): 11.29%

      Note: of the quoted revenue figure, €1.975B was from services.

      Figures at end of Q2:
      Gross cash: €22.919B
      Net cash (after subtracting debt): €9.064B


      • For Q2 specifically (AB Commercial Aircraft):

        Revenue: €12.239
        EBIT: €1.326
        EBIT (adjusted): €1.676

        Unit margin: 10.83%
        Unit margin (adjusted): 13.69%


        So, although BA’s figures show some improvement relative to past quarters, the company still has a LONG way to go before its earnings (and other finances) are up to par with the competition.

      • I think you are making stuff up here.

        NASA is not losing interest in Starliner. They’ve said repeatedly that they want/need another human launch services provider alongside SpaceX. If anything, NASA is increasing their interest in Starliner, in the form of increased scrutiny to be sure. And don’t put your money on the Dream Chaser horse. A crewed version of that is at least 5 years out. The cargo version is not even close to launching thanks to a debacle called the Vulcan Centaur program.

          • Has the English Professor really missed the fact that there is a difference between *losing interest* and *losing patience*?

            Surely you can ferret-up an article from the web that actually comes close to supporting the *losing interest* nonsense you posted.

          • There may be a *syntactic* difference, but is there a *substantive* one?

            Someone who is sufficiently interested will manage to find patience.
            Someone who loses patience will eventually give up — which amounts to losing interest.

            But, apart from that, the clear undertones in this article speak volumes. For example:

            “Given the number of remaining challenges to certification of Starliner, we strongly encourage NASA to step back and take a measured look at the remaining body of work,” Patricia Sanders, chair of NASA’s Aerospace Safety Advisory Panel, said during the meeting. NASA later released a list of the remaining items that needed to be handled ahead of Starliner’s first crewed spaceflight.”


            Not to worry: there are lots of people who just never manage to see the writing on the wall 😉

          • Yes, there is a substantive difference in meaning. Look it up. For you, one may lead to the other, but not at all for everyone.

            If anyone is going to give up on Starliner, it will be Boeing because they are the ones losing tons of money. NASA is not having to spend any more on this, and they want what they paid for because there is no other credible alternative to SpaceX on the horizon. They may be frustrated with Boeing, but it is untenable for them to be solely dependent on SpaceX. Therefore, it is highly unlikely that NASA is losing interest in Starliner.

            As far as undertones go; from the article you linked:
            “Boeing is “still committed” to the program despite all the challenges, and has not had any serious discussions about dropping out, Nappi said.”

          • The last thing NASA needs is a crashed rocket flight with crew on board. From that perspective, one can understand increasing reticence about working with a financially drained company that appears to have lost its engineering acumen and its ability to perform basic quality control.

          • I agree that the last thing NASA needs is a crashed rocket with crew deaths. This is why NASA is getting all up in Boeing’s business with increased scrutiny and safety reviews, i.e. more interest, not less.

    • Pedro,
      In contrast, Arianespace is doing so, so, well.

      They can’t fly Soyuz due to politics, their Vega is grounded, to return who knows when, and Ariane 6 is 4 years behind schedule and counting with no first launch on the horizon. Arianespace’s only two launches this year were their last two Ariane 5’s. Once king of the commercial launch market, it looks like Europe’s space launch business is currently closed. The Arianespace disaster is very Boeing-like!

      Hey at least they’ve launched twice as many rockets as ULA! Ha!

      • Too bad, which other aerospace contractor did worse than BA in government contracts (Starliner, KC-46, MQ-25 and T-7A)??

        • Like I said, Arianespace seems to be giving Boeing a run for its money in this regard.

          • “Arianespace consolidates leadership in commercial launch market with 15 successful Ariane, Soyuz and Vega launches in 2021 and revenue growth of 30%, while gearing up for another busy year”


            It may currently have a lull in launch activity, but is the company financially on its knees, like BDS?

          • LOL!
            I see you chose 2021 to support your point, which happens to be their most prolific year in a decade.

            Arianespace launches over the last several years:
            2019: 10
            2020: 10
            2021: 15
            2022: 6
            2023: 2 (sorry, no more this year)
            This is quite the collapse!

            If you think this collapse is temporary, consider that their most prolific 2021 relied on 9 Soyuz launches (8 from Russia’s launch sites). Arianespace counts them as their launches but realistically, how much of the work is done by them for the non-Kourou launches. Seems more like a marketing arrangement to me. Anyway, because of the political situation, Arianspace Soyuz launches aren’t coming back anytime soon. Then there are the facts that Araine-5 no longer exists, Ariane-6 has yet to fly (and won’t until next year sometime at best), and Vega is grounded (until they figure out why they are failing).

            To pile on, the competition, namely SpaceX, is humming right along, maintaining a record launch cadence with enough flexibility to snap up any impatient/desperate Arianspace customers. All this points to Arianspace not regaining its *leadership* any time on the foreseeable horizon.

        • Lockheed F-22, F-35, AGM-183 to name a few.
          NG MQ-4 blocks 20, 30, 40, MP-RTIP radar, IBCS (currently ~6 years late and $6B over budget with 1/4 the contracted set of systems integrated, and at that only 1/2 the capability promised for the ones that are)

          there are plenty of examples. the US MIC has forgotten how to deliver on time on budget.

  2. @Bryce

    I for one appreciate your financial analysis and thoughts on both Boeing and Airbus.
    I’m an airplane guy. I understand finances but not in this detail.

    “Calhoun said Boeing is “intent on proving” the viability of the trans-sonic truss brace technology it is developing with NASA. “I do think it’ll see service,” he said.”
    Ok big wig Calhoun is saying this but I’ve seen nothing about what the airline customers think.
    A big truss and open rotor engines operating on a busy airline ramp is just asking for disaster.

    Airbus is on the right track, carbon fiber wing A322.

    • Thanks for your kind words.

      On the subject of the TBW, this weird news appeared yesterday:

      “WISCONSIN- US Aerospace giant Boeing and leading space research organization NASA have joined forces with major US airlines to work on the Sustainable Flight Demonstrator (SFD) project and the development of the revolutionary X-66A research aircraft.

      “In an effort to advance aviation sustainability, Alaska Airlines (AS), American Airlines (AA), Delta Air Lines (DL), Southwest Airlines (WN), and United Airlines (UA) will actively participate in providing valuable insights.

      “This includes services and insights on operational efficiencies, maintenance, handling characteristics, and airport compatibility for the new X-66A aircraft.”



      Not clear to me how airlines can give meaningful operational input vis-à-vis a single technology demonstrator at NASA…but there you go.

      • What would net efficiency gains be for the TBW after all the losses from
        necessary safety and logistics mitigations are factored in?


        • What happens if the cited US airlines laugh in BA’s face when they get up close to the TBW demonstrator?
          What’s the risk of “thanks…but no, thanks”…?

          • Did you overlook the phrase:
            “after all the losses from necessary safety and logistics mitigations are factored in?”

            Has Bjorn addressed those factors?

          • I addressed these exact safety concerns with Bjorn months ago. Crickets

      • You can gain alot by having skilled customers help optimize the aircraft project so it makes the most profit for them. There are 1000’s of details that effect cost, mass and reliability. The 777 working together teams were a bit like that. Just reducing time, risk and manpower for standard tasks like wheel change by defining smart tools and procedures. Having a reliable electrical power system with generators, batteries, converters, transformers etc… that cost less, easy to replace, less mass and increased reliability. So there is alot to do besides reducing SFC, heavy checks and purchase cost.

    • “..Ok big wig Calhoun is saying this but I’ve seen nothing about what the airline customers think.
      A big truss and open rotor engines operating on a busy airline ramp is just asking for disaster.

      Airbus is on the right track, carbon fiber wing A322.”


    • I have major doubts about BA’s TBW hobby project.

      The concept has been around since the Hurel-Dubois aircraft of 1953…there’s probably a good reason why it hasn’t caught on in the last 70 years 😏

      For NASA, it’s just paid fun for some non-commercial nerds.

      • @Bryce
        Agreed. Another government jobs program.
        Remember in 2020 Calhoun took over and killed the NMA. Tons of money and research wasted!
        Calhoun days are numbered. Will the next CEO kill this program as well?

        • I see the TTBW as primarily an inexpensive, stock-boosting PR program for that company, myself: “Hey, we’re working
          on Something Big!” Mmm, maybe.

          We’ll see how it goes in the fullness of time.

    • Airdoc:

      You need to re-read the statement on the engines for the TTBW

      Use of current engine and latter if it proves out, maybe RISE. As a techie that is what I want to hear.

      As for props on ramps, LOL. Until the 50s that was all there was and today you have C-130 and the A400 with big props on the ramp (and high wing).

      While I give RISE a negative chance, props on an airport are dealt with and people are not taken out by them. Last incidents were jet engine suck in.

      • @TW
        Give me a break. Work with me here.
        The ‘50’s saw NOTHING as we are experiencing today and the future for how busy airline airport ramp operations are.

        Two ramp workers in Texas killed by being sucked into jet engines….just earlier this summer.
        Not a laughing matter!

      • @TW
        Your argument is weak about the reference to C130’s and A400’s on the ramp.
        That’s military ops. Not the busy chaotic commercial airport operations.
        Safety is NOT a laughing matter.

        • And the ever-prevalent on the internet “LOL!”
          is not an argument, I might add.

    • Airdoc

      “…A big truss and open rotor engines operating on a busy airline ramp is just asking for disaster…”

      The best:

      Je said
      “Airbus is on the right track, carbon fiber wing A322”

      Thank you for your Fanboysm of a comment in ridiculous objective and pious wishes in the hope that Airbus continues and not Boeing. We got the message.

      Ladies and gentlemen !

      The circus is back for 2023-2024, reopening its doors with some new clowns to make the children laugh…. 👍

      (!) Good! More seriously Boeing can make a new CFRP fuselage and CFRP wing around 2033-2035. With the advantage of doing better than Airbus in terms of CFRP wings (787-777X efficient aircraft vs A350) Just my opinion. Really absurd comment

  3. I would call that miner loss a win with all the issues that have popped up.

    It seems Calhoun is listening to the engineers who have done the wind tunnel tests on the TTBW. Good news so far and use of a real engine vs the pie in the sky RISE, good as well.

    • Don’t think the TTBW is a shoe in. It maybe parts of what is learned is used in the next gen aircraft. Airbus and Boeing both have access to super computers. Both can read press articles on what the other is doing, simulate on a computer and have a good idea of what’s possible either CF wingbox attached to a tube or TTBW.

    • @TW
      Calhoun listening to engineers 🤷‍♂️
      Now that’s funny

    • That “miner [sic] loss” means that 136 commercial aircraft were essentially given away at cost — together with all the defense products that were delivered by BDS at cost.
      The same has been happening now for 4 years.
      That’s a LOT of merchandise to have shipped without a profit.

    • No surprises there.
      Looks like the SSAs that BA submitted might not be so convincing…

      Any news of the MAX 10’s EIS?
      And that of the 777-9?

  4. Things are definitely not going well for legacy space launch companies these days. Boeing is screwing the pooch big time with Starliner, and then they are doubling up on that with the Vulcan Centaur as half owner of ULA. To top it all off, they are the prime on that abomination called SLS. It’s a cost plus contract so I guess the good news for them is that they can’t lose money, but NASA is being mindlessly wasteful by obscenely overpaying for everything on that program.

    As the other half to ULA, Lockheed is responsible for its part of the Vulcan Centaur disaster. Some seem to think the inaugural launch will happen before the end of this year. I wish them luck with that.

    Arianespace is an absolute disaster these days. They currently have no operational launch systems available, and no one seems to know when that will change. Their launch market share this year is going to be less than 2%.

    Roscosmos is understandably stymied in their ability to grow their commercial manifest, but it doesn’t help that they are actively recruiting soldiers to fight for Russia in Ukraine.

    It’s a good thing that younger companies are stepping in to carry the market.

    • “ESA maintains the late 2023 target for Ariane 6’s debut. In a June 8 update, the agency said that an overall launch system qualification review would take place later that month. Two hot firing tests (in July, and a new one added later this summer) will study a normal flight and a “degraded” one, respectively. Then Ariane 6’s assembly for launch is expected in November.”



      “Europe’s Arianespace expects to launch its first Ariane 6 rocket by the end of the fourth quarter of 2023, but it will take until 2026 to ramp up to the full rate of nine to 11 per year, the company’s chief executive said on Wednesday.”

      “Arianespace is planning four to five Ariane 6 launches in 2024 followed by eight in 2025 before reaching its full planned rate of nine to 11 annually in 2026, he said, though depending on demand that could increase.”


      • OHB expects first Ariane 6 launch in early 2024

        “It’s not yet launched, but we hope that it will launch in the early part of next year,” said Marco Fuchs, chief executive of OHB, of Ariane 6 during a presentation about the company’s first quarter financial results. A subsidiary of OHB, MT Aerospace, produces tanks and structures for the rocket.
        His comments are the strongest statement yet that an Ariane 6 launch in 2023 was no longer feasible. The European Space Agency said in October 2022 it was projecting a first launch of the rocket, once expected in 2020, in the fourth quarter of 2023. However, neither ESA nor prime contractor ArianeGroup have provided recent updates on that schedule or confirmed that they were still targeting a launch before the end of the year, amid rampant speculation that the launch was slipping into 2024.


        And, from the first article you linked:

        Officially, Arianespace’s heavy-lift Ariane 6 rocket is scheduled to debut as soon as late 2023 — but competitor SpaceX may receive some of its business amid development delays that could push the European rocket’s first flight into 2024 or beyond.

    • Europe’s Ariane 6 rocket is turning into a space policy disaster – Now the Ariane 6 rocket is failing even its most basic task

      So why is Europe developing a rocket that costs more than a Falcon 9 and is a decade late to the party? Because European nations desire independent access to space. This means that European nations can have their own way of putting their most valuable military and scientific satellites into space without having to rely on NASA, Russia, or the whims of American billionaires. This is a justifiable decision in light of geopolitical events that have cut off Europe’s access to the Russian Soyuz rocket.

      But the Ariane 6 rocket is now failing even at this, its most basic and important task. Politico reports that the European Commission—the executive arm of the European Union—is looking to buy rides on the Falcon 9 rocket due to ongoing delays in readiness of the Ariane 6 rocket.

      In a draft request to the European Union, the publication reports, the European Commission plans to ask for a green light to negotiate “an ad-hoc security agreement” with the United States for its rocket companies to “exceptionally launch Galileo satellites.” Galileo is a constellation of European satellites that provide global navigation services to Europe similar to the US Global Positioning System, or GPS.


      Europe is getting desperate. Their domestic space launch industry is failing. Looks like they need to be rescued by Elon too.

      • And, yet, the James Webb telescope was launched by an Ariane 5 😉

        • Yeah, back in your favorite year for Arianespace, 2021. It was one of a whopping 3 Ariane 5 launches that year. It was ESA’s contribution to the joint mission, and as such was probably not competed out. I have no problem with that BTW. The Ariane 5 was a reliable/high performing system for its time. Not nearly as reliable as the Falcon 9, but hey, no other rocket in history is. The problem is that it became way too expensive relative to Falcon 9 and therefore its relevance passed, along with Europe’s leadership in the commercial launch business. It’s sad that, just like Boeing, Arianespace’s hubris and lack of imagination/innovation is leading to its demise.

          • Hehe SpaceX is another Uber, a cash burning enterprise.

          • Then I guess another Uber is displaying more technical acumen than, and is out-innovating the European space launch industry.

          • Everyone was shocked and awed by Uber’s low cost rides, at least initially – until they filed for IPO and tried to prove they have a sustainable future after listed.

  5. “Boeing Says 777X & 737 MAX Certification Delays Could Lead To “Significant Order Cancelations””

    “If we remain unable to deliver 737 aircraft in China for an extended period of time, and/or entry into service of the 777X, 737-7 and/or 737-10 is further delayed, we may experience reductions to backlog and/or significant order cancelations.”

    “The planemaker has already begun to record order cancelations for the 777X, although not in much detail. In stating its backlog to the end of June 2023, Boeing noted that aircraft cancelations “totaled $10,061 million and primarily relate to 737 aircraft.” Further in, it also says that there has been a “net decrease of 777X and 737 aircraft.””


  6. “Chinese estimated to need 9,440 new aircraft by 2042: Airbus”

    “China will need over 9,440 new passenger and freight planes by 2042, according to a forecast released by Airbus on Thursday, explaining the demand is generated by the rapid expansion in passenger traffic of predicted 5.2 percent per annum growth rate over the next 20 years.

    “The demand also makes up more than 23 percent of the world’s total demand for about 40,850 new aircraft in the next 20 years, the forecast said.

    “New deliveries of passenger and freight aircraft for China will cover 8,020 typically Single Aisle like the A220 and A320 Families and 1,420 typically widebody planes including the A330neo and A350, around 75 percent of this demand will be for growth and 25 percent will be to replace aircraft currently in service.”

    “By 2042, the propensity for the Chinese population to fly will more than triple the average 0.5 trips per capita recorded in 2019 to an average of 1.7. A growing Middle Class is expected to be the main driver of future air traffic growth.

    “China has become the biggest single country market of Airbus around the world. By the end of June 2023, Airbus in-service fleet in the Chinese mainland reached 2,175 aircraft representing a some 54 percent market share on the Chinese mainland. ”



    LNA has previously written on this subject, and opined that this level of demand could not be satisfied without deliveries from BA.





  7. With the truss braced wing design the wings become very thin and can no longer carry significant fuel. So where does the fuel go? In the fuselage? This would negate much of the potential efficiency advantage.

    • NASA isn’t interested in efficiency — it’s not commercially minded. For NASA, the X-66A is just a chance to play with some aerodynamic principles.

      LH2 aircraft will also have fuel storage in the fuselage — but at least they’ll give the benefit of zero emissions. Although that may not be much of an attention item in the US, it’s very much on the radar in certain other countries/regions.

  8. Inviting the wolf to the door in the US:

    Seattle Times: “House votes to speed approval of safety fixes to Boeing jets despite critics”


    Of note: “…the 737 MAX has approaching 200 noncompliant systems, according to people familiar with the details.”

    This new procedurw doesn’t bode well when dealing with an OEM with a track record of corner-cutting…

    • After three all-fatalities Boeing 737 crashes in a row. Remarkable.


      • @Vincent: The China Eastern 737-800 crash doesn’t count. Pilot suicide, not airplane related.

        • Thank you for that clarification Mr Scott.

          Let’s look at the sassy comments that sometimes can hit rock bottom. Frightening gangrena comments that can ruin a discussion when the “masse people” and other “ignorant people” lend themselves to aeronautical talk.

          Accounting and aeronautics are two different things but a good malicious way for Boeing bashing. Comparing the crashes of 737 of different generation with a different problem due to human factor is however not difficult to understand in a normal world is not it…


      • It would be interesting if the aviation press were to publish a list of the non-compliances in question.

        With regard to the China Eastern crash, was any part of the (severely damaged) CVR ever read out? I know that the FDR allegedly indicated that the plane dived in response to a control input, but I never came across any reports regarding the CVR content.

        • I have not yet seen an *official* determination
          of the cause of the China Eastern 737NG.
          Links to one would be most welcome.

          As for “multiple early reports” of this or that-
          does anyone remember the same phraseology
          used to justify the [second] recent invasion of Iraq; reports that turned out to be utterly false?

    • Wow!!

      -> “Both the Boeing 737 MAX and the 787 do not fully comply with FAA safety standards.”

      • Looks like the move to DC is really bearing fruit…😏

        The new legislation is very advantageously timed vis-à-vis the “certification” of the MAX-7, MAX-10 and 777X.
        God knows what shortcuts will now be allowed to pass through the sieve.

      • Which aircraft flying today comply fully with the FAA safety standards? The safety standards aren’t static. They change.

        I know for a fact that the A350 also had special conditions associated with its certification. Have those special conditions been fully satisfied?

        • “Have those special conditions been fully satisfied?”

          No link regarding those “special conditions”?

          • Not going to do your work for you Bryce. Just google “a350 special conditions” and about 6 or 7 different ones will come up right away, both with the FAA and EASA. Perhaps if you tried as hard to find fault with your own team’s products as you do with Boeing’s, you would gain a better perspective on what actually goes on in this industry as a whole.

          • Typical MO of the BA back office — no links to back up assertions.

            Wow — “about 6 or 7 different ones will come up right away”…versus 200 for the MAX.

            An A350 example:
            “Special Condition D-04 Crew Rest Compartments – CRC occupancy is not allowed during Taxi, Take-off and Landing (TT&L) phases. During flight, occupancy of the CRC is limited to the total number of bunks and / or seats that are installed”

            Somewhat different category to the ungodly mess in the MAX and 787…

          • What about:
            Special Conditions: Airbus Model A350-900 Airplane; Lightning Protection of Fuel-Tank Structure To Prevent Fuel-Tank Vapor Ignition
            Special Conditions: Airbus A350-900 Airplane; Crashworthiness, Emergency Landing Conditions
            Special Conditions: Airbus Model A350-900 Airplanes; High-Speed Protection System
            Special Conditions: Airbus Model A350-900 Series Airplane; Flight-Envelope Protection (Icing and Non-Icing Conditions); High-Incidence Protection and Alpha-Floor Systems
            Special Conditions: Airbus Model A350-900 Airplane; Control-Surface Awareness and Mode Annunciation
            Special Conditions: Airbus, Model A350 Series Airplanes; Non-Rechargeable Lithium Battery Installations
            Special Conditions: Airbus Model A350-900 Series Airplane; Side-Stick Controllers
            Special Conditions: Airbus Model A350-900 Airplane; Flight-Envelope Protection, Normal Load-Factor (G) Limiting
            I could go on. Notice the lightning protection one. Sound familiar?

            Guess you have a distinct lack of curiosity when it comes to what actually happens across the industry.

          • Let’s take the lightning protection as an example, since you referred to that.
            The matter was resolved in 2013 — BEFORE certification of the A350 (which occurred in Sep. 2014).
            Quoting from the relevant FAA document (dated Dec. 19, 2013):

            “Thus, the overall level of safety achieved by these proposed special conditions is considered equivalent to that which would be required by compliance with Sec. 25.981(a)(3) and (b).”

            Now, the link posted above about the new US legislation relates to resolution of special conditions *after* certification — within a vague, discretionary time limit.
            The MAX was certified in 2017, and the 787 was certified in 2011 — and these models have special conditions that are *still being addressed* today? Even worse: the MAX has *200* such issues…

        • “The safety standards aren’t static.”

          Not when OEMs trample on them for the sake of convenience.
          From the link above:

          “In March 2019, against the opposition of front-line FAA safety engineers, the agency’s management let Boeing remove certain elements of the jet’s lightning protection on the wings that were proving costly for airlines to maintain.”

          Of course, that was back in the good old days when the FAA was in a certain OEM’s pocket.

        • From D Gates’s reporting, the lobbying is more about cost cutting/deferrals.

          -> What prompted Boeing to request this specific exemption was not a safety issue, but an economic one: the paint on the 787 wing kept peeling off.

          -> A June 2016 internal FAA white paper written by Doug Anderson, who was then the manager of the FAA’s airworthiness law branch in D.C., pointed out a spike in noncompliances in the 787 and 747 aircraft. He wrote that these were “most likely are attributable in part to [Boeing’s] commercial interest in developing safe (perhaps minimally safe) but potentially noncompliant and under-substantiated designs, because fully compliant and substantiated designs require more time and resources.”

    • From the Seattle times article Bryce linked:

      A similar accelerated approval process for interim design changes is already available to Airbus from Europe’s FAA counterpart, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency, or EASA.

      • Yes, I had already read that.
        But, when one considers the reality on the ground, some countries/regulators work differently to others, don’t they?

        For example, EASA had more stringent demands vis-à-vis the re-certed MAX than the FAA did. And the US Congress granted an EICAS waiver based on cheap arguments of “not doing so will cost American jobs”.

    • I posted on it last week.
      The ARJ-21 now has a type cert in 2 countries outside China.

          • Haha chutzpah.

            And the virtually non-stop blathering about A350’s paint issue without knowing the work BA pushed behind the scene on lowering 787’s lighning and fire protection from current safety standards. (See my post above)

            The second ARJ-21 was delivered to TransNusa in June. The third one is expected soon. So that’s sufficient for the international operation.

          • Oh may be my post I referred to was not clear enough:

            -> For example, the 787 does not meet the lightning protection standard designed to prevent a wing fuel tank explosion that the FAA stipulated as a special condition when the largely carbon composite jet was certified to carry passengers. Though the jet has a very effective system to reduce flammability in the wing tank — to reduce flammable vapor, inert gas is pumped in as fuel is used up during flight — it does not have the required level of protection against ignition sources inside the wing.

            -> In the meantime, in an October submission to the FAA, Boeing petitioned the FAA for an exemption to specific wing tank fire safety rules for the 787. Last month, the FAA agreed.

          • Step by step.. it’s fun to watch our friends here shift the goalposts as the Chinese continue to do things
            our friends say they can’t / won’t.

            If only BA worked as diligently, while hiring *American engineers* and line workers, rather
            than eliminating them in favor of outsourcing

  9. Airdoc

    “…A big truss and open rotor engines operating on a busy airline ramp is just asking for disaster…”


    Thank you for your Fanboysm of a comment in ridiculous objective and pious wishes in the hope that Airbus continues and not Boeing. We got the message.

    Ladies and gentlemen !

    The circus is back for 2023-2024, reopening its doors with some new clowns to make the children laugh…. 👍

    …”The best

    “Airbus is on the right track, carbon fiber wing A322″…


    More seriously Boeing can make a new CFRP fuselage and CFRP wing around 2033-2035. With the advantage of doing better than Airbus in terms of CFRP wings (787-777X efficient aircraft vs A350) Just my opinion.

    Really absurd comment

  10. Oh look!.. the political intrigue continues:

    “Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) didn’t disclose a meeting last October on his public calendar at a Boeing facility in Arizona that was attended by a registered lobbyist for the company, despite his promise to post details of his public schedule, Daniel reports.

    “The meeting came several months after President Joe Biden nominated Phil Washington — who was later endorsed by families who lost loved ones in a fatal Boeing 737 MAX crash — to lead the FAA.

    “Tester withheld public support for the nominee, hurting Washington’s momentum for confirmation. Washington eventually withdrew his nomination after it stalled amid concerns over his lack of aviation experience.

    “At the time, Tester was one of two senators on the Commerce Committee who caucus with Democrats — where the party holds a one-seat majority — who had yet to publicly disclose whether they would vote to advance Washington’s nomination to the floor, although Tester’s office contends that he told the Senate Commerce Committee privately in mid-March that he would support Washington if he had been brought up for a committee vote.

    “Months earlier, Tester, who chairs the Senate Appropriations Defense Subcommittee, attended an October event at a Boeing facility hosted by the Mesa Chamber of Commerce‘s Mesa Industry and Defense Council in Arizona, according to a Facebook post by the organization.

    “But even though Tester has vowed to post his public schedule online to ensure transparency (one of the only senators to do so), the meeting was not mentioned on his public calendar for that month. At the meeting, according to a LinkedIn post about the event, was a state-registered lobbyist for Boeing: Mark Gaspers, senior manager for government operations at the company, along with other registered lobbyists for other entities.

    “Between Aug. 30 and Sept. 29, 11 Boeing lobbyists donated a total of $4,300 to Tester’s campaign, according to FEC records. Boeing’s corporate PAC has donated $15,000 to Tester’s leadership PAC over the past three years, and on March 13, Tester’s campaign committee received $1,000 from the Boeing PAC — its first donation to his campaign since 2011. Tester met with Boeing Defense, Space & Security President and CEO Ted Colbert the following day.

    “During the first quarter of 2023, Tester received $10,500 from lobbyists for Boeing, including three actively lobbying on FAA issues, getting $6,600 from Subject Matter’s Steve Elmendorf, who is working on the FAA reauthorization for Boeing; $2,900 from Subject Matter’s James Ryan, and $500 from Crossroads Strategies’ Marc Numedahl, who is among a team of 10 lobbyists at the firm working for Boeing. He also received $500 from former Rep. Norman Dicks (D-Wash.), another lobbyist for Boeing.

    “A spokesperson for the panel confirmed that Tester told the committee privately that he would have supported Washington in a committee vote. Asked why the event at the Boeing facility was not included on his official schedule, Tester spokesperson Sarah Feldman told PI: “This event was not organized by Senator Tester’s official office. Sen. Mark Kelly organized the event and Tester attended at his request when he visited Arizona last year.””


    • A hundred lines to highlight political and emotional sarcasm.
      Blah blah blah, waste your time and ours.

      Let’s get back to reality on airport runways , tarmac and the air.

      The 737MAX flies hundreds of millions of passengers now and since its reintroduction into service, in late 2020 to the chagrin of frustrations like you and to the satisfaction of the marketplace and airline customers.

      Keep going you are on the right track…

  11. Bryce

    …”What happens if the cited US airlines laugh in BA’s face when they get up close to the TBW demonstrator?
    What’s the risk of “thanks…but no, thanks”…?”…

    “Science fiction”, “wishful thinking “and other ridiculous non-objective beliefs.
    Peremptory, to put in the trash.

  12. Vincent

    ”…What would net efficiency gains be for the TBW after all the losses from
    necessary safety and logistics mitigations are factored in?


    Lol! Just look at Airbus’ work on hydrogen aircraft and you’ll get the “skeptical” answer. Airbus still has answers historically speaking. You just have to know how to observe before speaking.

  13. Airdoc,

    ”…Calhoun listening to engineers 🤷‍♂️
    Now that’s funny…”
    The CEOs of predecessor Airbuses listened to the engineers when it came to launching the A380 and A340classics/-200/-300, A340HGW-500/-600.
    What did Airbus do in 2023? … Nothing …

    (!) Calhoun listens to the engineers who told him “We can do something very interesting with RISE Engine and TBW. Others pulled the strings for other concepts too. He has several design offices not just one.

    Learn this …

  14. Solid point Mike

    …”ONERA ( little NASA for aeronautics in France )does not seem to think like you. TBW, OPEN ROTOR , hydrogen tank at the back may be the right solution by… 2035 with a lot of money

    Lol !

    Let’s not compare the elite which is ONERA, NASA and Boeing, but also powerful engineers such as P. Condit (who surely remained a consultant for Boeing’s choices in this area) with what the a few tourists from the ignorant mass, and other accountants who think they are experts in aeronautics.

  15. Bryce

    …”The concept has been around since the Hurel-Dubois aircraft of 1953…”

    …”there’s probably a good reason why it hasn’t caught on in the last 70 years 😏…”

    Extremely convinced that Bryce knows nothing about aeronautics and mainly how an aircraft works, even the simplest ones.

    Boeing’s concept is much better than Hurel Dubois’.

    The simple law (if you can figure it out) An aircraft gets all the quintessence from a long, thin CFRP wing.

    Boeing has advanced experience in this field and has historically designed and produced the best wings than anyone else.

    The 787 Dreamliner has the thinnest and lightest wing ever made. Which makes it the smallest long range/widebody ever built.

    Longest CFRP 777-X ever built. Must be cleverly folded down to fit same 777-300ER doors/ ICAO code

    Now when you look at Hurel Dubois from 70 years ago and this sue can do Boeing with a narrower fuselage and a wing that squeezes all the quintessence of its length through the CFRP rigidity you understand that you are part of the mass ignorant. Stay in your field which is accounting.

    You will have understood fars that your declarations on the improvements of Boeing in term of compatibility join those of D. Calhoun. I had interpreted that by 2022, better than 2021, 2023, better than 2022 etc etc .. While you prophesied the “Armageddon” for us.

    Please, let go of your fallacious analyzes. 👍

    • Absolutely.
      Here’s some data that I posted on Saturday over on the AB earnings article:

      Deliveries to date in July:

      – MAX: 27 (3 from inventory; 24 from the line)
      – 787: 3 (all from inventory; none from the line)

      A320/321: 46
      A220: 5
      A350: 6
      A330neo: 3

      BA can’t even hit 30…and it’s talking about raising the level to 38?

      • So I guess Boing won’t hit their claimed “40 MAXes per month by mid-2023”, then?


          • Speaking of scams, I wonder what’s happening at Boom™ these days.

    • > Over time, all transport will move to electric. <

      Oh, of course it will- esp heavy trucks and commercial airliners. 😉

      scams abounding..

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