787 donation: The Boeing Co. handed over 787 test airplane #3 (ZA003) to the Museum of Flight Saturday in an elaborate ceremony marking an unprecedented donation of a modern airliner to an aviation museum.
To be sure, the donation was made possible by the fact that ZA003 (and 002 and 001) can’t be sold due to the massive rework necessary, and these three airplanes have been written off for more than $2bn. But this doesn’t make the event any less significant.
By Bjorn Fehrm
As part of our premium content we provide a briefer form of our airliner performance analysis than we provide to our consulting clients. As we present this material, we presume a lot of knowledge on the part of the reader on the definitions we use and how these are employed. We thought it would be appropriate to give an easy-to-digest clinic on some of these definitions and concepts that we are using. Aired at the same time when we run our analysis series, we thereby present the background to our different analysis steps and some of the key parameters that influence these.
We will provide these articles as free content to make them available to a broader audience. To make them more interesting and easy to digest we refrain from using formulas as much as possible, instead we illustrate our findings with real values from a modern aircraft , for that we have chosen the most common of them all, the Boeing 737.
We will fly this aircraft in the latest MAX 8 version on a typical short haul mission of 2.5 block hours covering a distance of 1,000 nautical miles. Starting from the cruise we will explain the factors that determine the performance of the aircraft and how we can estimate their influence. As we present the real values for the performance for the aircraft, we can also give the background to the different characteristics that contribute to the overall efficiency of the aircraft. Read more
By Bjorn Fehrm
Part 3 of 3
In Part 2 of our three-part 757 Replacement analysis, we took a close look at Airbus’ new 97 tonne take-off weight A321neo, revealed in a world exclusive by Leeham News and Comment October 21. We analyzed the A321neoLR’s capabilities and limitations when compared to Boeing 757-200W and we saw that it could do the international flights that the 757-200 does with about 25% better efficiency. In this final Part 3, we will now compare the 757 and A321neoLR against what can be Boeing’s reaction, a clean sheet New Single Aisle, NSA, or New Light Twin Aisle, (NLT). First the conclusions from Part 2:
For Part 3 we can summarize:
As Brazil’s budget airline GOL reportedly evaluates whether to acquire 20 Boeing 737-7s or Embraer E-195 E2s, the principal of the “CASM Paradigm” is a concept worth examining.
This head-to-head evaluation of the E-195 E2 and the 737-7 MAX is a rarity. Typically the head-to-head involves the Bombardier CS300 and the Airbus A319neo. All three have the same seating capacities. The E-195 E2 has slightly fewer passengers than the 737-7 with similar seat pitch.
The competition is also what might be seen as a contrary competition. Airframers agree: the airline industry is upgauging. Capacity discipline, long elusive until after the global financial collapse of 2008, has been driving load factors higher. But lowering unit costs, or the Cost per Available Seat Miles (CASM) has long been the principal measure by which airlines, OEMs and aerospace analysts measure efficiency.
Although Trip Costs of aircraft operating over a route is important, the trend toward upgauging at all levels clearly is the driving force.
Embraer takes a different view, arguing that trip costs and a smaller airplane should trump the CASM obsession. A smaller airplane will mean higher yields, EMB says. A larger airplane provides lower trip costs but drives yield lower.
We visited Embraer’s headquarters earlier this month and received a full briefing on what EMB calls the CASM Paradigm. In our report today, we detail the presentation and discuss other considerations beside CASM vs Trip Costs that drive the size of the aircraft acquired.
Airbus has started marketing a long-range, higher gross weight version of the A321neo that it says will have 100nm more range than the Boeing 757-200W used on long range, trans-Atlantic routes, Leeham News and Comment has confirmed.
We learned three weeks ago Airbus was working on what we will call the A321neoLR (Long Range); Airbus doesn’t yet have a name for it, but began showing the details to airlines a week ago. The airplane is a higher gross weight aircraft, at 97 tonnes, and will have three auxiliary fuel tanks. With most long-range 757 configurations around 169 seats (United Airlines), the A321neoLR will have 164 seats, a slight loss, with 20 lie-flat business seats and the remainder in coach configuration.
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Boeing firms 52/mo for 737: Boeing this morning announced what we reported in June 2013: that it will go to a production rate of 52/mo for the 737 in 2018. This will not be the last rate increase for the 737.
Airbus previously notified suppliers to be prepared for a rate of 54/mo in 2018 for the A320, which we reported some time ago.
Product strategy: In the continuing tit-for-tat in product strategy debate between Airbus and Boeing, often show slides representing their view of how their products line up vs The Other Guy. We’ve often criticized Boeing for taking liberties with how it views Airbus seat; for example, Boeing assigned fewer than 350 seats to the A350-1000, while Airbus now promotes the airplane as having 369 seats in a J/Y class configuration. Boeing assigns 467 seats to its 747-8I while Airbus to now viewed the 747-8 at 405 seats, a figure we generally use in our analysis to represent typical airline configuration.
Airbus recently showed the following slide presenting its current view of the product line up.
Coming soon: We will be rolling out changes this month to Leeham News and Comment. We will expand our News and Analysis, providing the most insightful commentary of aviation issues of any on-line publication. Most on-line news resources either collate into one portal news from around the world, or report news without analysis, or offer superficial analysis. We’re famous (or infamous, depending on your viewpoint) for providing insight in a no-BS manner.
We often report the news before anyone else, and we spot market trends long before others.
These changes include transformation into a combination paid and free content site. We’ll have paid content several times a week in addition to our free content.
Our wrap up of Farnborough would be incomplete without looking closer at the world’s leading engine supplier, GE Aviation, which together with partners (like SAFRAN in CFM joint venture) garnered more than $36 Billion in orders and commitments during the show. This figure was only significantly bettered by Airbus ($75 Billion) and it came close to Boeing’s $40 Billion. With such level of business the claim by GE Aviation CEO, David Joyce, that the Airbus A330neo engine business was not the right thing for GE as they have more business than then they know what to do with, was certainly no case of “sour grapes”. Read more
Airbus cleared the air about the A330neo, which we concluded was a must last December, and made the 2014 Farnborough Airshow go off to an exciting start. A lot has been speculated about the A330neo, and in the end it did come out a bit stronger than what most had anticipated. Some of that is marketing but a lot is real, and here we give a first assessment of what was launched.
Let’s start with the specifics as given by Airbus and Rolls-Royce today in presentations and discussions. Here are the A330-800neo and -900neo’s main features: Read more