Converting customers to the FSA

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By Vincent Valery

Introduction  

Nov. 28, 2019, © Leeham News: As Boeing works its way through the 737 MAX crisis, all consideration whether to launch the New Midmarket Aircraft (NMA) is on hold.

But the Boeing sales force has been testing the market with a single-aisle concept, the Future Small Airplane (FSA) to replace the MAX.

This highly confidential effort has been underway for months. Some lessors have been approached to swap some MAX orders for the FSA—there was a supply-demand imbalance for lessor-ordered MAXes even before the grounding—and airlines across the globe have been approached to gauge interest.

Summary
  • Solving a lessor placement headache;
  • Older 737 NG replacement;
  • Accommodating airlines that over-ordered;
  • Brand new (non) metal for old carriers.

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The new focus in aircraft development, the production

By Bjorn Fehrm

October 17, 2019, ©. Leeham News: Over the last decades the focus for new airliner projects has been technological advancements in aerodynamics, structures, engines, and avionics. This has offered 15% efficiency gains for the new airliners over the aircraft they replace. While still important, the next airliner projects have an additional focus which has moved to the top of the list. The production phase and how to improve its many parts.

The parts include development for automation, efficient partnering/sourcing and how to reduce the expensive learning phase of the production. We will cover this change in a series of articles around the 9th Aviation Forum, an up-and-coming Munich conference that focuses on these themes.

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Airbus CEO says the airline industry must cut carbon emission with 50% by 2050

By Bjorn Fehrm 

June 18, 2019, ©. Leeham News: Airbus new management team has set the company ambitious targets for the future. These not only describe how to develop and produce new, more competitive airliners but also defines Airbus’ contribution to a sustainable aviation industry, contributing its part in the fight against climate change.

The new Airbus CEO, Guillaume Faury said at the opening of the Paris Air show “We must find a way to decarbonized aviation. This is for our generation to do. It’s expected of us by the flying public and by society”.

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Bjorn’s Corner: Airbus about Urban Air Mobility: Stop dreaming, Start making

By Bjorn Fehrm

May 24, 2019, ©. Leeham News: “Stop dreaming, Start making” was the angle of Airbus responsible for Urban Air Mobility (UAM), Eduardo Dominguez Puerta, presenting during Airbus Innovation days in Toulouse this week.

He also said, over 90% of the present UAM projects will not make it into a certified operational platform. Here’s why.

Figure 1. The motivation for Urban Air Mobility is strong. Source: Airbus.

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How useful is an NMA, Part 6

By Bjorn Fehrm

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Introduction

November 14, 2018, © Leeham News.: Last week we operated the future Boeing NMA from North American hubs. The aircraft would cover the North American market well but would have limitations when flying to South America. The coverage would be sensitive to where our hub would be, as would European coverage.

Now we finish the series by comparing the NMA to its main alternatives for range and operational economics.

Artists impression of the Boeing NMA. Source: The Air Current.

Summary:

  • When comparing the NMA with its competitors, the same cabin type and ruleset must be used for all aircraft.
  • Using a common ruleset and measuring over typical long range operation, the NMA will be the most economical aircraft of the compared types.

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The Supersonic dilemma

By Bjorn Fehrm

December 20, 2017, ©. Leeham Co: The Super Sonic Transport (SST) has a new spring. Aerion announced its new partner Lockheed Martin Friday and Boom got a new investor in Japan Airlines (JAL) the week before.

The design of a supersonic transport aircraft is exciting and difficult. Yet it isn’t the key challenge. The engine is.

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Bjorn’s Corner: Electric aircraft

By Bjorn Fehrm

June 30, 2017, ©. Leeham Co: One of the areas I explored while at Paris Air Show last week was electric aircraft technology. With electric aircraft, we mean an aircraft where the propeller/fan is driven my an electrical motor.

We don’t talk about “more electrical aircraft systems” like for the Boeing 787.

One of the companies investing in technology for electric aircraft is Siemens. A Siemens-engined aerobatic aircraft, the Extra 330LE, made daily flight displays during the show.

Figure 1. The Siemens engined Extra 330LE aerobatic aircraft. Source: Siemens.

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Developing Boeing’s airplanes

June 21, 2017, © Leeham Co.: “It’s all about continuing the development strategy since thirty years” said Mike Delaney, VP of program development for Boeing. “It’s about continuing the development strategy for 30 years producing super efficient twins that support point-to-point networks.”

Delaney made the remarks at the Paris Air Show about developing the 737 MAX 10 and the NMA (New Medium size Airplane).

Figure 1. Boeing’s airliner lineup over  the years. Source: Boeing.

Figure 1 shows the Boeing products over the years, with the 737 MAX 10 and the NMA filling the gap between 180 and 270 two class seats (note the 748i is no longer part of the chart). The MAX 10 is in place and a tentative NMA is showing the way into the next decade. Read more

MC-21 and C919 compared. Part 3.

By Bjorn Fehrm

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Introduction

June 15, 2017, ©. Leeham Co: We continued the comparison of Irkut’s MC-21 and COMAC’s C919 last week with an analysis of the cabins and systems. The week before, we compared project time plans, structures and aerodynamics.

Now we finish with an analysis of the economics of the aircraft.

Summary:
  • The MC-21 is the more advanced aircraft of the two. It uses carbon composites for the wings and empennage.
  • Coupled with more refined aerodynamics, the MC-21 offers a higher efficiency than the more classical C919.

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Could an NMA be made good enough? Part 6

By Bjorn Fehrm

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Introduction

April 27, 2017, © Leeham Co.: We have in several articles gone through the sizing of an NMA (New Midrange Aircraft). We looked at the fuselage, cabin, wings and engines. Now we will sum the exercises and look at the performance of the resulting aircraft.

Boeing is seriously considering launching an NMA. The key to the launch decision will be the airplane’s economics: for development and production as well as operation.

The idea is the NMA shall have “twin aisle comfort with single aisle economics.” We will now use or performance model to analyze if the final aircraft has these characteristics.

Summary:

  • An NMA designed to the principles in our articles will have a seven abreast dual aisle cabin. The cabin will increase passenger comfort in the 200 to 260 seat range and speed ground operations.
  • Careful design of the fuselage, paired with a modern wing and engines, would produce an NMA with “dual aisle comfort and single aisle economics.”

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