October 25, 2019, ©. Leeham News: To better understand what went wrong in the Boeing 737 MAX crashes I have over the last half-year run Corner series around aircraft Pitch stability and Aircraft Flight Control systems and how these attack the problems of today’s airliners need for stable characteristics over a very wide flight envelope.
With this as a backgound, we will now in a series of Corners go into the Lion Air final crash report which is issued today, to understand what happened and why.
Oct. 14, 2019, © Leeham News: Look for Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg to leave in 2020.
At least this is my view.
But some aerospace analysts I spoke with over the weekend are split. Some believe Friday’s action by the Boeing Board of Directors “stripping” (as most media headlines and stories positioned it) the chairman’s title from Muilenburg, while his retaining the president and CEO titles, is the first step in easing him out the door next year. This is my view, too.
Muilenburg also remains on the Board.
Others think handing the non-executive chairman’s title to lead director David Calhoun is actually an effort to save Muilenburg’s job.
Here’s the divergent thinking. None of the analysts wanted to be identified because by investment bank policy, their remarks hadn’t been cleared for quotation and none had yet issued research notes in reaction.
Sept. 30, 2019, © Leeham News: Boeing’s announcement last week that it’s establish a permanent Board level safety committee, realigning some functions and creating new lines of reporting is a good and necessary step.
It’s not only good and necessary for the 737 MAX return to service, it’s good and necessary for Boeing and for the industry.
It’s also just a first step in restoring confidence in the MAX and the Boeing brands.
Sept. 25, 2019, © Leeham News: Boeing today outlined the results of the investigation of a special Board of Directors committee formed in August that creates new processes and organizational structures aimed at preventing another 737 MAX crisis and improving safety within Boeing Commercial Airplanes.
The Board-level Aerospace Safety Committee is the four-member committee announced by Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg following the second fatal accident of the MAX in March.
Admiral Edmund Giambastiani (Ret), a former nuclear submarine officer, chaired the committee. As a result of the committee’s work, the following recommendations have been made:
July 05, 2019, ©. Leeham News: It seems more and more likely the 737 MAX grounding will go well beyond six months and it can approach nine months to a year depending on developments in the next months.
The costs to Boeing for the MAX debacle are now approaching the costs of a new aircraft development.
June 17, 2019, © Leeham News: The Paris Air Show opens today and the elephant in the room is the Boeing 737 MAX.
There is no telling when the airplane will get FAA approval to return to service. According to some news reports, Boeing will hasn’t turned over the MCAS revisions to the FAA for review, testing and approval.
The acting administrator of the FAA said he expects the MAX to be back in the air by the end of the year. Some leapt to the conclusion this means December—and it may, but let’s remember September, October and November are before the “end of the year,” too.
There’s no telling how other global regulators will act, and when, to conduct their own review and approvals. Airlines would like a global action. It’s tough to tell customers one country sees the airplane as safe but others don’t.
May 27, 2019, © Leeham News: Airlines are increasingly going public with desires to be compensated by Boeing for the grounding of the 737 MAX.
Norwegian Air Shuttle and Spice Jet said shortly after the MAX grounding March 13 they were going to seek compensation from Boeing.
Compensation for delivery delays is also a risk to Boeing. This already has reached $1bn, one aviation lawyer estimates, and stands to climb by billions more, depending on how long new deliveries are delayed.
But Boeing is preparing to take a preemptive defensive move against these latter claims.
By John Cox
May 20, 2019, © Leeham News: The latest version of the Boeing 737 is the MAX. It has new engines, new flight deck screens and the latest in-flight entertainment systems for passengers. It is quite a change from the 737-100 that first entered service 51 years earlier in 1968.
After flying operationally for 15 months (May 2017 to October 2018), there was a loss of a 737 MAX 8 in Indonesia. Five months later, another MAX 8 crashed. Something was wrong. How could such a proven workhorse have two accidents in such a short time in very similar circumstances?
So says Dennis Muilenburg, CEO of The Boeing Co.
As stories drip, drip, drip out in The Seattle Times, New York Times, Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal and other media about Boeing’s development process of the 737 MAX, one can’t help but wonder otherwise.
Pilots weren’t told of MCAS. Switch functions were changed. Warning lights were inoperative, but the pilot manuals indicated otherwise. Boeing discovered one problem but didn’t tell the FAA for a year. A single point of failure. The absence of information about the MCAS in the pilot manual. A second software glitch is found in the flight control system. Boeing said it didn’t want to “inundate” pilots with information. Blaming the pilots for the accidents.
But nothing is Boeing’s fault. There was no failure, no gap, no technical problem. Or so says Muilenburg.
Yet within one week of the Lion Air accident, in which Boeing pointed the finger at the pilots, Boeing was diving into the MCAS design.
It goes on and on.
If “safety is our top priority,” it’s time for Boeing to man up and do the right thing, regardless of the legal liabilities.
It’s time to back simulator training on MCAS before pilots can fly the MAX. Read more