Pontifications: Fine balance needed by Boeing in aftermarket services drive

By Scott Hamilton

April 30, 2018, © Leeham News: The Wall Street Journal Friday reported Boeing was poised to purchase a supplier; a deal could be announced as early as today.

The acquisition, if it happens, will be a major step toward increasing the business at Boeing Global Services (BGS).

It will be another step in the vertical integration that recommenced under Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg, an outgrowth of too much outsourcing with the 787.

Coincidentally, the day before, Wendi Folkert, director for Supply Chain Propulsion Strategy for The Boeing Co., acknowledged that the growing BGS has to balance against competing with Boeing’s own suppliers.

Folkert made her remarks at the I-90 Aerospace Corridor Conference in Spokane (WA).

Phil Krull of Embraer Executive Jets will present at the Southeast Aerospace and Defence Conference in Mobile (AL) in June. Airbus, NASA, Pratt & Whitney, Bombardier, Southeastern state governments and suppliers will also present.Go here for Agenda and Registration information.

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Pontifications: Small suppliers prepare for production transformation

By Scott Hamilton

March 12, 2018 © Leeham Co.: When it comes to preparing for increasing automation, robotics and transforming the way airliners will be built in the future, focus rests primarily on the big OEMs and suppliers.

The small suppliers also must prepare for this transformation.

Tool Gauge of Tacoma (WA) is one such company. I sat down with Jim Lee, manager of sales and marketing, at the Pacific Northwest Aerospace Alliance conference last month in Lynnwood (WA) to talk about transformation.

The Southeast Aerospace & Defence Conference looks at the Transformation in production and building for the future. It’s June 25-27 in Mobile (AL).

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Professionals see two types for Middle of the Market sector

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Introduction

March 1, 2018, © Leeham Co. Three industry professionals raised the question whether the Middle of the Market sector requires one aircraft type or two.

One raised the prospect Boeing might have to undertake concurrent aircraft development, as it did with the 757 and 767.

Richard Aboulafia, a consultant with The Teal Group, Ron Epstein, aerospace analyst for Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Kevin Michaels, president of AeroDynamic Advisory, made their remarks at the annual conference of the Pacific Northwest Aerospace Alliance last month in Lynnwood (WA).

Summary
  • Low-cost Embraer engineers may play a role in Boeing’s development of the NMA.
  • One consultant sees two distinct NMA aircraft.
  • Boeing’s vertical integration of the supply chain may make sense only with two concurrent of consecutive airplane programs.

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Aerion’s supersonic engine presented

By Bjorn Fehrm

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Introduction 

February 26, 2018, ©. Leeham Co: Aerion Supersonic’s CEO and Executive Chairman, Brian Barents, presented the first pictures of the Aerion AS2 biz jet’s engine at the recent PNAA conference in Seattle.

It’s the first engine adapted for supersonic passenger transport since the Concorde’s Olympus engine was developed in the 1960s.

Figure 1. Aerion’s supersonic AS2 business jet. Source: Aerion.

Based on the released configuration sketch, we put the engine through our GasTurb modelling software. Here’s what we found.

Summary:
  • The Aerion AS2 engine combines the CFM56 core with a new high Specific Thrust low-pressure spool.
  • Through the AS2’s M1.4 cruise speed limit, complex variable engine inlets and outlets can be avoided.

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Pontifications: Transformation is key to increasing production rates

By Scott Hamilton

Feb. 19, 2018, © Leeham Co.: The likely prospect that Airbus and Boeing will increase single-aisle production rates next decade is outlined in our paywall article today.

The whys and capabilities to do so are outlined in the paywall post. The how is what I’ve been writing about since the first of the year, when LNC looked ahead to its 2018 forecast.

The “how” is the transformation in production that is underway in aerospace.

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Airbus, Boeing likely to push for 70/mo single aisle airplane production rates: analysis

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Introduction

Feb. 19, 2018, © Leeham Co.: Production rates for the Airbus A320 and Boeing 737 families are already at record levels, and heading higher.

Airbus plans to hit a production rate of 60/mo next year. Boeing is taking the 737 to rate 57. Boeing is studying rates of 63/mo and even 70/mo. Airbus is sure to match.

How will the airframers achieve these rates?

Information gleaned from the sidelines of the Pacific Northwest Aerospace Alliance conference last week give a reasonably good picture of how Boeing will get there.

Visibility was less on Airbus, which is unsurprising given the conference was in Boeing’s back yard in Lynnwood (WA).

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Airbus, plagued by “decapitation,” faces tough choices on NMA: consultant

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Introduction

Feb. 15, 2018, © Leeham Co.: Airbus’ plans to respond to Boeing’s prospective New Midrange Aircraft, aka 797, is a mystery to one of the industry’s leading aviation consultants.

Richard Aboulafia of the Teal Group notes that Airbus’ research and development investment overtly disappears after 2018, with the introduction into service of the A350-1000 and the A319neo.

Aboulafia spoke at Day 2 of the Pacific Northwest Aerospace Alliance (PNAA) conference in Lynnwood (WA).

He’s long compared R&D spending between Airbus and Boeing, often praising the former for its level of investment and criticizing the latter for lagging.

Now, Airbus’ level of spending is a question mark while Boeing’s is a comfortable level compared with revenue, Aboulafia says.

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NMA demand skeptics aren’t thinking outside the box, Boeing exec says

Feb. 13, 2018, © Leeham Co.: Skeptics who question Boeing’s market demand forecast of 4,000 airplanes for the New Midrange Aircraft aren’t thinking “outside the box,” says Randy Tinseth, VP Marketing.

Tinseth heads up the team that prepares Boeing’s annual Current Market Outlook for the next 20 years.

Boeing’s CMO forecasts a need for about 5,900 small twin-aisle aircraft (fewer than 300 seats but larger than single-aisle airplanes of more than 200 seats). About 4,000 of these are for the NMA.

Others, including Airbus, Pratt & Whitney, Rolls-Royce and some key suppliers see the market as between 2,000 and 2,500. Leeham Co.’s own estimate is 2,300.

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Global Services won’t hurt airline tech ops, says Boeing official

Feb. 13, 2018, © Leeham Co.: A Boeing official today dismissed concerns that expanding Boeing Global Services, with additional controls on aftermarket support for commercial airplanes it builds, might negatively impact potential sales.

Several airlines, including Delta, Singapore, Lufthansa, Air France-KLM and some Chinese carriers, operate their own MRO facilities that not only maintain their own fleets, but offer services to other airlines.

Kevin Michaels, president of the consulting firm AeroDynamics, expressed concern that Boeing’s tighter control of aftermarket parts is already leading to customer satisfaction issues at some airlines. He also said Boeing might lose airplane sales to Airbus if it is unwilling to grant MRO rights to the maintenance facilities of those carriers that operate them.

Michaels made his remarks at the annual conference of the Pacific Northwest Aerospace Alliance.

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Boeing risks losing orders in aftermarket business push, says consultant

Feb. 13, 2018, © Leeham Co.: Boeing’s drive to dramatically increase its aftermarket business, competing with suppliers or even controlling the parts needed by airlines for maintenance, repair and overhaul operations have a risk, says an industry consultant.

Kevin Michaels, president of AeroDynamics, said Boeing potentially could lose airplane sales if it takes too hard an approach to controlling aftermarket parts.

Michaels appeared at the 2018 annual conference of the Pacific Northwest Aerospace Alliance (PNAA) today in a Seattle suburb.

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