Boeing Business Jets announced yesterday at the Dubai Air Show that it is now offering the BBJ3, an executive version of its new 737-900ER. With five auxiliary fuel tanks, the BBJ3 will have a range of 4,765 nm. Its 1,120-sq-ft cabin is 35 percent more than that of a BBJ and 11 percent more than that of the BBJ2. The list price is $62.5 million, but it will be a while before deliveries can begin.
Boeing has delivered its first 737-800 equipped with a new type of GPS-based landing system developed by Rockwell Collins. The Federal Aviation Administration certified the GLS after a three-year test program during which Boeing proved the system could be used for low-visibility automatic landings.
Boeing has just chosen Michelin as the second source of aftermarket nose and main tires for the 787. Michelin will offer a combination of traditional radial designs and new lightweight near zero growth construction tires, designed to reduce cuts and wear. The 787 will use 10 tires, two for the nose gear and eight for the main landing gear. Boeing uses Michelin tires on the 737NG and 747-400ER.
Pratt & Whitney is now having to consider what it can contribute to a new powerplant to be developed by its Pratt & Whitney Canada subsidiary for the proposed Bombardier C Series of small jetliners. It also is seeking new launch customers for its PW6000 engine on the Airbus A318 and is continuing to invest in new-technology developments for possible future applications, according to P&W president Louis Chenevert.
Acknowledging that airlines are concerned about more than bottom-line operating costs when it comes to choosing airplanes, Bombardier unveiled the airplane’s cabin mockup here at Le Bourget to claim best-in-class passenger comfort for its proposed C Series of single-aisle airliners.
You couldn’t be in a better place than Le Bourget during airshow week to appreciate–if that’s the right word–aircraft noise. Yet a comparison between the takeoff rumble of the newest airliners and the thunderous departures of the latest military models amply demonstrates the progress in noise suppression made by the civil aircraft industry. And this progress continues, aimed at the eventual development of truly silent aircraft.
Winglets increase efficiency by reducing lift-induced drag. They do this by relocating and diminishing the vortex at the wing’s tip, resulting in lower fuel burn, higher cruise speed and longer range.
Aviation Partners Boeing, the U.S. joint venture between “Blended Winglet” designer Aviation Partners and Boeing, last month received supplemental type certification for its winglet modification for the Boeing 757-200 airliner. The companies expect to start installing the eight-foot-two-inch tall Blended Winglets on Continental Airlines and Icelandair airplanes in July.
The 1,050th and last 757 airliner took off from Boeing’s Renton, Washington assembly plant for delivery to Shanghai Airlines on April 28, some 23 years after the company ferried the first of the single-aisle workhorses to launch customer Eastern Airlines. But out of sight doesn’t mean out of mind for Boeing. Fifty-five operators still fly some 1,000 of the twinjets, many of which will need upkeep for decades to come.
The chasm separating the realm of full-size airliners and regional airplanes has claimed another victim, swallowing the Boeing 717 as surely as it did the Fokker 100 and British Aerospace 146/Avro RJ. So who, you ask, would dare tempt fate again? All signs point to Canada’s Bombardier.