Skip to comments.Boeing lets fly with a jumbo sales pitch (Qantas ... 747-8 efficiency statistics)
Posted on 03/27/2006 1:48:04 AM PST by Paleo Conservative
BOEING is pitching the new version of its legendary jumbo jet to Qantas, arguing it will beat Airbus's double decker A380 on costs per seat as well as for a total trip.
The passenger version of the Boeing 747-8 will be stretched by 3.6m and will be able to carry 34 more seats in a three-class configuration with 21 per cent more revenue cargo space than the existing 747-400.
Due to enter service in 2010, it will boost range by 1850km, give a 16 per cent lower fuel burn and 8 per cent lower costs per seat.
More importantly, Boeing says, it will also offer 6 per cent lower seat-mile costs and 29 per cent lower trip costs than the giant A380.
"We've really been able to make some significant breakthroughs in the fuel efficiency on the 747-8 - with the engines, with the aerodynamic improvements, as well as significant improvements in the operating costs," Boeing Commercial Airplanes vice-president of product development, Daniel Mooney, told a recent briefing in Sydney.
Mooney estimates that about a third of the efficiency improvements come from the 65,000lb-thrust GEnx 2B67 engines, which are based on the GEnx engines launched on the 787 Dreamliner.
The new engines use 15 per cent less fuel per seat with a 17 per cent gain in fuel per tonne. Despite being larger, the 747-8 has lower fuel consumption than the 747-400.
This translates into an improvement of about 8 per cent in operating costs over the 400.
"When we develop a heavier, bigger airplane, typically what happens is the trip costs go up but it just takes more fuel, and it's higher cost to send a bigger airplane on that trip," Mooney says.
"With the efficiencies we're getting from the 747-8, it's great to see that our trip costs have actually reduced a little bit versus the smaller 400. That's a really powerful economic improvement.
"When we compare it to the A380, our assessment is that the 747-8 will have better seat mile costs, and significantly - in the order of over 25 per cent - better trip costs."
Aerodynamic improvements and an enhanced wing are expected to contribute another third to the efficiency gain, although Boeing concedes the A380's completely new wing still has a slight advantage.
Boeing redesigned the wing to give it a state-of-art airfoil, building on the lessons learnt with the 777 and the 787, and added raked wingtips which increased the span of each wing by about 2m.
This increased the depth of the airfoil, giving the wing more structural efficiency, helping to reduce weight and adding to the fuel capacity. The manufacturer also simplified the trailing edge system to double slotted inboard flaps and single slotted outboard.
"We were able to make that simpler, get weight out, help reduce the maintenance costs for the operators and still get the low-speed performance that we need for the airplane," Mooney says.
Other improvements include electronic spoilers, the use of new alloys and some carbon composites as well as better integration of the engine nacelles to reduce drag.
Boeing says the 747-8 also wins when it comes to structural efficiency. It says the A380 is 18 per cent heavier than the 747-8 in terms of operating empty weight per seat, a measure of structural efficiency, and would need to be stretched to 650 seats to match its competitor.
As well as improved efficiency, the new Boeing plane features a new interior and an upgraded flight deck and will meet London Heathrow's QC2 noise requirements. Interior changes include access to empty space behind the bulge at the front of the plane for use as galley space or even passenger beds.
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Does this mean Boeing is putting a supercritical airfoil on the wings of the new 747-8?
operating cost per seat-mile
fuel burn per seat-mile...
is what in cents?
Good for good ol' Boeing!
It reminds me of the internal combustion engine. Every time a new type of engine comes along, the I.C. is tweaked until it's at least as good as the upstart, usually better. Same with steel. New materials keep threatening it and so they tweak the steel to be competitive with the new materials, mostly in cost.
I love it when Boeing moves ahead!
Give me Boeing or I ain't going.
AND the '47 can go into existing, unmodified airports/ gates. The '47 also meets noise requirements which the Airbus is rumoured to fail badly.
Meanwhile back at Airbus In a required evacuation drill of its new two-deck A380 superjumbo 21 volunteer evacuees are injured including a broken leg. Ignore all the ambulances says Airbus, it was a huge success.
Airbus evacuated all 873 people from a two-deck A380 superjumbo jet in under 90 seconds in a key certification test. The test took place at an Airbus facility in Hamburg, Germany.
Daniel Holtgen, a spokesman for the European Aviation Safety Agency, said, "All indications are it was a total success."
If there is one weak point in this it is the GE engine. They never have had a good record for reliability.
I just think it's funny that the guy in charge of developing Boeings is named Mooney.
Assuming it is correct, this study really hurts Airbus, IMHO.
You might want to check the data on the GE90 and the F404, as only two examples, and then revise your silly statement.
Except that Boeing has a reputation of meeting or exceeding the performance gurantees it makes on its aircraft. The 777-300ER has exceeded its performance goals by 1.5%. This has been translated into greater than expected range or higher payload. If the 747-8 follows the same trend, the actual performance of the test aircraft will be significantly better than the promises.
I agree, PC. Looks like the -8, both the passenger and the stretched freighter model is going to be a super efficient derivative because of its new engines and wings. ;)
Can somebody tell me why Boeing moved from Seattle to Chicago? That makes no sense.
They just moved their top level corporate headquarters. They've merged so many companies into Boeing in the last several years that Seattle isn't central to their other operations especially defense related buisinesses. It was also to send a message to the Washington state legislature and labor unions that Boeing would be willing to locate manufacturing of new aircraft to other states if they weren't treated well.
I think it's likely that both British Airways and Japan Airlines--already large 747-400 operators--will end up buying the 747-8 instead of the A380-800 because both airlines have far less landing slot restrictions at their home airports (London Heathrow for British Airways and Tokyo Narita for Japan Airlines).
That's interesting. I think people might still be debating why the move to Chicago. I never heard it said like that, but you might be right. The Company did offload most of its manufacturing already and has become a large scale integrator.
Not only that, but your origin and destination won't need to repave and refit just to accommodate you.
I get to fly a BA 747-400 in June (first time) and I'm as excited as a little school boy.
Probably because it has to go through just rigorous testing and type certification by the FAA?
Holy cow, look at this:
Sleeping berths in the hump above coach!?! Each slide shows a space bigger than my apartment in law school!
Is there any difference between the experience of flying a 747-400 as a passenger compared to a 747-100 or 747-200? What I thought was strange about the 747 classics was how much the wings bend up and down during flight. It's a little unnerving the first time you see it. I never got to fly on a 747SP, but I did see one at HNL in 1978.
We're probably going to try to sit as far aft as possible (honeymooners, you know) . . . so I'll keep an eye out for that wingflex.
I should point out that I've never flown any 747 configuration, just some 737s and a pair of 767s.
The disgraced former CEO who had an affair with a subordinate liked living in Chicago over Seattle. Not the reason they claimed, but likely the real one.
The 747SP is a rocket! I changed a whole vacation around just to ride on one! I had a ticket from Johannesburg to Miami, and I asked them if I could exchange it for Johannesbug to Frankfurt. My only flight on the SP.
As for the 100, I think I only flew it once on TWA, and we had 4 -200's. Only did the 300 once LA to Amsterdam round trip.
The 400 is great, I've been on combis and regular. Been upper deck in coach and all over the plane, its like a big flying house.
400 has better TV and audio and all that. Lots of 200's are gone, damn few flying. Wings do flex, that is what they are supposed to do.
Yes, I've seen simulations of the wing flex on PBS/Discovery/NatlGeographic, but never in reality. I am going to insist on a window seat and we will hopefully be far aft.
Sorry for us, we have to fly coach. More's the pity, we have a layover at LHR before getting on a ScareBus something or other.
The two worst aspects of transatlantic flight are the noise and the dehydration. This time, I am prepared!
All I remember was how friggin' huge the engines were. I remember looking out that window and thinking "I could park my car inside one of those!"
And I drive the Crown Vic.
Actually, there were 33 injuries.
I'm now looking forward to the crummy three hour layover at LHR. Apparently it's a great place for planewatchers.
I see commercial jets in up close in person and I'm like a little kid (again).
There's something highly irrational and magical about air travel. I might be more giddy about that than I should, but I'm a geek and Dearest understands that...so I guess it's okay.
well,, I never saw the wing flex in reality, only on video or PBS specials, anyhow, interesting to say the lest to see how much they test those planes today.
There are a few 747-100s and 200s still flying in the freighter market, how many, I don't know, but, yes, they are slowly fading into the sunset.
There are a few very dodgy operators flying them in SE Asia right now, and JAL still flies a few.
The ones we got in '89 were already 15 years old and had 15,000 cycles on them. Parts fell of on takeoff, I was on a flight where the gear punctured the fuselage...
Same goes for the DC-10, its become a rareity as well. The MD-11 does great for cargo though.
Trust me, that was an incredible sucess. Evac tests always have injuries, McDonnell had a woman break her neck and be paralyzed for life. They put out more people in a shorter period of time than any one else ever, they are to be congratulated.