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Airbus A320 Replacement  
User currently offlineWingedMigrator From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 2138 posts, RR: 56
Posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 5600 times:

Article in this week's Aviation Week states that Airbus may launch the A320 replacement (not A320E, but the full NSR program) as soon as 2008, and possibly even next year.

The article goes on about Airbus working to shorten their development cycle, with the A350 EIS target being pulled back to early 2013 from mid to late 2014.

Sorry I don't have the direct quote, I only get the electronic edition at work. I'll try to get them tomorrow, but perhaps someone with quicker access can post the relevant excerpts in this thread?

25 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineEaglewarrior From Barbados, joined Aug 2005, 32 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 5346 times:

Good news if true. The sooner Airbus gets its products out, the better especially with the NSR. It would also be good if Airbus got the A350 out in early 2013 instead of mid to late 2014.

User currently offlineScbriml From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2003, 12041 posts, RR: 47
Reply 2, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 5323 times:
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Hmm, which engines will they hang on this A320 replacement? confused 

With a backlog of around 1,800 A32x I don't see them being in quite such a hurry.



Hey AA, the 1960s called. They want their planes back!
User currently offlineScouseflyer From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2006, 3364 posts, RR: 9
Reply 3, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 5293 times:

Quoting Scbriml (Reply 2):
Hmm, which engines will they hang on this A320 replacement?

With a backlog of around 1,800 A32x I don't see them being in quite such a hurry.

depends on how long it takes to get it into service.....

Actually I wonder if the idea is to keep the current A32X on as a bargin basement type of plane with the NSR being the spanking new version (pretty much how a car manufacturer would keep the lower spec versions of an old model in production after its replacement hits the market?

[Edited 2006-11-03 16:28:02]

User currently offlineA520 From Switzerland, joined Jun 2006, 116 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 5293 times:

Quoting Scbriml (Reply 2):
With a backlog of around 1,800 A32x I don't see them being in quite such a hurry.

1800 at today's production rate is just over 5 years i.e. 2011!


User currently offlineZvezda From Lithuania, joined Aug 2004, 10511 posts, RR: 64
Reply 5, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 5220 times:

Quoting Scbriml (Reply 2):
Hmm, which engines will they hang on this A320 replacement?

GE, PW, and RR are all working on engines for the A320 and B737 replacements.


User currently offlineScbriml From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2003, 12041 posts, RR: 47
Reply 6, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 5157 times:
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Quoting A520 (Reply 4):
1800 at today's production rate is just over 5 years i.e. 2011!

Yes, assuming they don't sell another one. Otherwise it's likely to go some way beyond 2011.

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 5):
GE, PW, and RR are all working on engines for the A320 and B737 replacements.

Yes of course they are, but are any of them (preferably more than one) going to have a product that can be offered to airlines in 2008? I don't think so.

I think Airbus has enough on its plate with sorting out the A380 and getting the A350 firmed up to even consider NSR in just over a year.



Hey AA, the 1960s called. They want their planes back!
User currently offlineKen777 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 8045 posts, RR: 8
Reply 7, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 5114 times:

Airbus knows that Boeing is working on the RS and that they need to be ready to respond. I would be surprised if they weren't working on the new version.

Quoting Scbriml (Reply 6):
Yes of course they are, but are any of them (preferably more than one) going to have a product that can be offered to airlines in 2008? I don't think so.

They won't be ready for delivery in 2008, but they might feel they will be ready for delivery in 2011, allowing A & B to announce their new planes and start the selling process.


User currently offline1337Delta764 From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 6386 posts, RR: 2
Reply 8, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 5087 times:

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 5):
GE, PW, and RR are all working on engines for the A320 and B737 replacements.

I have heard actually that CFM is studying a successor to their CFM56 engine. I haven't heard of any signs of CFM splitting up. I personally think that CFM should stay together to remain competitive in the 737RS/NSR programs. However, IAE is another story, as RR and P&W are studying separate designs, which could lead to IAE splitting up. RR is studying a three-spool turbofan, while P&W is studying a geared turbofan.

I am sure Airbus would be willing to select three engine manufactures for the NSR, but I am not sure if Boeing is willing to select three engine manufacturers for the 737RS. Many have considered offering three engines for the 777 a mistake. Boeing has since no longer offered any more aircraft with three engine options. Boeing has selected two engine manufacturers for the 787, GE and RR. For the 777-200LR, 777-300ER, and 747-8, Boeing has awarded exclusive contracts to GE. I am sure that Boeing will select CFM (assuming they stay together) for the first engine option. If IAE splits up, Boeing might choose between RR and P&W for the second option, with RR being the more likely candidate.

[Edited 2006-11-03 17:14:53]


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User currently offlineLeelaw From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 5009 times:

Something must have changed since last June:

...The improved single-aisle family will incorporate an aerodynamic tidy-up, engine improvements, weight savings, a new cabin and possibly new large winglets, which are currently in flight test. Service entry is targeted for 2008. Airbus chief operating officer customers John Leahy does not believe that a quantum leap in single-aisle aircraft efficiency will be possible until the arrival of new engine technology in middle of the next decade, and in the meantime Airbus is working on the Enhanced models with the target of reducing fuel burn by 4-5%. “I would bet we probably can achieve this,” says Leahy. He says that “the winglets could get a couple of percent, the aerodynamic clean-up could get another 1% and a little more tweaking here and there could give another 1% on today’s A320”...

http://www.flightglobal.com/Articles...dy+plans+with+upgraded+'A320.html

Perhaps the "hitch" in the development of "A320E" has precipitated forging ahead with a next-generation design:

Airbus’s mid-life update for the A320 family has hit trouble with the revelation that it is unlikely to adopt new large winglets that were central to expected fuel burn improvements...

http://www.flightglobal.com/Articles...+plan+to+put+winglets+on+A320.html


User currently offlineArt From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2005, 3344 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 4861 times:

Quoting Leelaw (Reply 9):
I would bet we probably can achieve this,” says Leahy. He says that “the winglets could get a couple of percent, the aerodynamic clean-up could get another 1% and a little more tweaking here and there could give another 1% on today’s A320”...

If the winglets' advantage is offset by the extra weight entailed and they are abandoned, the target improvement drops to 2% (optimistically by the sound of it). If it would take a lot of work to achieve an improvement of <2%, would that be worth pursuing? Particularly when throwing all possible resources into the A350XWB is becoming so crucial.


User currently offlineWingedMigrator From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 2138 posts, RR: 56
Reply 11, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 4624 times:

Relevant quotes, from Aviation Week & Space Technology 10/30/2006, page 38:

Quote:
Airbus has long been coy about development details for the next-generation single-aisle aircraft, fearful of undercutting brisk A320 family sales. In recent months, officials have merely said it would likely enter operational service toward the middle of the next decade. But on charts presented to analysts recently during an EADS investor conference, Airbus shows a notional program launch in late 2008. The company also indicates there is some flexibility in that date, with the time fluctuating either a year earlier or later.



Quote:
EXECUTIVES FOR EADS, which owns Airbus, have said they want to cut more than a year from Airbus's typical product development cycle. The first program to attempt the faster time-to-market route would be the A350. The project launch, which Airbus shows as occurring soon, would result in the first aircraft entering service in early 2013, rather than mid- or late-2014, which would have been the case under the airplane maker's current development cycle.

But even with its accelerated timeline, the product maturation process still lags behind Boeing's. Wilhelm's presentation points out that if Airbus's narrow-body project starts about a year ahead of the Seattle manufacturer, it will still have a later in-service date.



Quoting Leelaw (Reply 9):
Perhaps the "hitch" in the development of "A320E" has precipitated forging ahead with a next-generation design

Not sure about that. The gestation period with a 2007 - 2009 program launch is consistent with EIS in the middle of the next decade.

This story deflates the notion, sometimes advanced on a.net, that Airbus can't develop their A320 successor because of the A380 and A350 work, leaving Boeing the same five year head-start for the 737RS that they enjoyed in the mid-size airliner market. That doesn't seem like it's going to happen.


User currently offlineKen777 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 8045 posts, RR: 8
Reply 12, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 4561 times:

Quoting WingedMigrator (Reply 11):
This story deflates the notion, sometimes advanced on a.net, that Airbus can't develop their A320 successor because of the A380 and A350 work, leaving Boeing the same five year head-start for the 737RS that they enjoyed in the mid-size airliner market. That doesn't seem like it's going to happen.

Hopefully by the time Airbus launches the NSR the heavy work on the 380 will be over so it will only be a XWB/NSR program.  Smile

Before getting started on wither program, however, it seems that there is work to do in getting the engineers on the same page, software wise. Get that done and max out the power on the engineers computers and then they can start looking at shortening the development time of new planes.


User currently offlineKSUpilot From United States of America, joined Jul 2006, 656 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 4519 times:

I guess they figure they lost the A350 battle (they may catch up with Boeing, but for a long while the 787 will be the winner). The A380 isn't the hot seller that they thought it would be.
They need to come out with something now. Why wait for Boeing to launch their RS program if they feel they have something that help them hop over Boeing.

Then again, there have been predictions that Boeing will launch their RS program when the 787 enters service, aka 2008. So this is really no surprise.


User currently offlinePlanemaker From Tuvalu, joined Aug 2003, 5925 posts, RR: 34
Reply 14, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 4426 times:

Quoting KSUpilot (Reply 13):
They need to come out with something now.

As has been quoted in several post above, execs from both Airbus and Boeing have said that they are dependent on the engine manufacturers' developing new engines. Airbus nor Boeing can go it alone without the engine makers.

On the other hand, although doing R&D, the engine manufacturers are not going to commit major dollars to developing a new engine program until A and B gives them the green light. Almost a chicken and egg situation.



Nationalism is an infantile disease. It is the measles of mankind. - A. Einstein
User currently offlineOsiris30 From Barbados, joined Sep 2006, 3186 posts, RR: 26
Reply 15, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 4416 times:

Quoting Planemaker (Reply 14):
On the other hand, although doing R&D, the engine manufacturers are not going to commit major dollars to developing a new engine program until A and B gives them the green light. Almost a chicken and egg situation.

I'm guessing both A & B have told them 'if you build it, we will come'. It would take a rocket scientist to figure out both want them.



I don't care what you think of my opinion. It's my opinion, so have a nice day :)
User currently offlineLokey123 From Barbados, joined May 2006, 138 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 4367 times:

I can guarantee for sure that one engine manufacturer has currently committed a significant amount of resources to developing an engine to power the RS/NSR. They will have something to offer very soon.

User currently offlinePlanemaker From Tuvalu, joined Aug 2003, 5925 posts, RR: 34
Reply 17, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 4364 times:

Quoting Osiris30 (Reply 15):
I'm guessing both A & B have told them 'if you build it, we will come'. It would take a rocket scientist to figure out both want them.

I'm not so sure. While on the surface it seems logical that A and B "both want them", the reality is that they are not putting any pressure on the engine makers for new engines. It is convenient to put off a new airframe by blaming it on the engine makers.



Nationalism is an infantile disease. It is the measles of mankind. - A. Einstein
User currently offlineLeelaw From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 4317 times:

Quoting WingedMigrator (Reply 11):
The gestation period with a 2007 - 2009 program launch is consistent with EIS in the middle of the next decade.

What the OEMs end up doing in this size class will be interesting indeed. IIRC, Boeing's stated long-term goal is to bring the design-to-delivery cycle down to approximately 36 months.



Quoting WingedMigrator (Reply 11):
This story deflates the notion, sometimes advanced on a.net, that Airbus can't develop their A320 successor because of the A380 and A350 work, leaving Boeing the same five year head-start for the 737RS that they enjoyed in the mid-size airliner market. That doesn't seem like it's going to happen.

Nevertheless, at the same Global Investor Forum/Analyst Conference (October 19 & 20), Andreas Sperl (former Airbus CFO) reported that the cash impact of the A380 delivery delays 2006-10 will be a net working capital deterioration of E1.5bn (assuming perfect execution of the "Power8" program). Questions of mobilizing the requisite engineering resources laid aside, the devil in all this may well be in the financing details.


User currently offlineOsiris30 From Barbados, joined Sep 2006, 3186 posts, RR: 26
Reply 19, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 4273 times:

Quoting Planemaker (Reply 17):
I'm not so sure. While on the surface it seems logical that A and B "both want them", the reality is that they are not putting any pressure on the engine makers for new engines. It is convenient to put off a new airframe by blaming it on the engine makers.

The smart ones know it's coming and would likely try to get ahead of the game. There's no reason for them to not be working on them, just as I'm sure Boeing and Airbus are slowly working on their planes for said engines (just on slow boil rather than full heat)



I don't care what you think of my opinion. It's my opinion, so have a nice day :)
User currently offlineDank From United States of America, joined Jul 2006, 867 posts, RR: 16
Reply 20, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 4264 times:

Quoting Planemaker (Reply 14):
As has been quoted in several post above, execs from both Airbus and Boeing have said that they are dependent on the engine manufacturers' developing new engines. Airbus nor Boeing can go it alone without the engine makers.

This is correct as I read it. The major source of increased efficiency is going to be due to new engines. Sure there will be some aerodynamic efficiencies gained, but the main effect of CFRP will probably be in manufacturing efficiencies, not in increasing the efficiency of the plane, itself. That said, both Airbus and Boeing aren't in a rush to replace the 320 and 737. They are selling well and while carriers would probably like a more efficient narrowbody, there isn't any competition for them to move to now (alleviating time pressure on both manufacturers).

cheers.


User currently offlineOsiris30 From Barbados, joined Sep 2006, 3186 posts, RR: 26
Reply 21, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 4232 times:

Quoting Dank (Reply 20):
but the main effect of CFRP will probably be in manufacturing efficiencies, not in increasing the efficiency of the plane, itself. That

No, not quite true.. I would expect the same 1/3, 1/3, 1/3 approach on the new planes. Maybe more like 1/4, 1/4, 1/2 due to the smaller starting point. CFRP will still create a lighter, more structurally efficient frame than AL.

Additionally second generation CFRP planes (like the 737/320 replacements) will leverage key learnings from the 787/350 projects (assuming both follow said projects inhouse) and be more efficient in terms of weight than the 787/350. (ofcouse if Airbus chooses to do the 350 and 320replacement at the same time, well they lose that experience, and Boeing gains a huge upper hand for their 737 replacement IMHO).



I don't care what you think of my opinion. It's my opinion, so have a nice day :)
User currently offlinePlanemaker From Tuvalu, joined Aug 2003, 5925 posts, RR: 34
Reply 22, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 4188 times:

Quoting Lokey123 (Reply 16):
They will have something to offer very soon.

How soon is very soon? And if it is really "very soon", it may very well end up being too soon if the airframers don't end up launching for several years.

Quoting Leelaw (Reply 18):
What the OEMs end up doing in this size class will be interesting indeed. IIRC, Boeing's stated long-term goal is to bring the design-to-delivery cycle down to approximately 36 months.

I recall reading something similar. So if EIS is indeed 2014/15, as has been suggested by various B execs, program launch might not conceivably happen until 2011/12.



Nationalism is an infantile disease. It is the measles of mankind. - A. Einstein
User currently offlineScbriml From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2003, 12041 posts, RR: 47
Reply 23, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 4035 times:
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Quoting Planemaker (Reply 22):
So if EIS is indeed 2014/15, as has been suggested by various B execs, program launch might not conceivably happen until 2011/12.

That would be my expectation.

With both the A32x and 737 selling like the proverbial, neither Airbus nor Boeing are exactly under pressure to replace their current offerings. Yes, there may be one or two vociferous airlines out there pressing for more efficient planes, but where else are they going to go to buy them? scratchchin 

I'm sure both Airbus and Boeing are briefing airlines on their NB replacements, but it doesn't seem to be stopping any of them from ordering the current offerings in large numbers.



Hey AA, the 1960s called. They want their planes back!
User currently offlineArt From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2005, 3344 posts, RR: 0
Reply 24, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 4000 times:

Quoting Dank (Reply 20):
Airbus and Boeing aren't in a rush to replace the 320 and 737. They are selling well and while carriers would probably like a more efficient narrowbody, there isn't any competition for them to move to now (alleviating time pressure on both manufacturers).

I agree with your observation.

However, if both A and B acknowledge that CFRP is definitely the best way forward as a structural material for A320/737 replacement designs, Boeing will be well placed to take advantage of its acquired knowledge of using this material (787) and has an incentive to launch a 737NG replacement sooner (before Airbus is "up and running" with CRFP production) rather than later.

If Airbus were to respond to a Boeing launch of a CFRP 737 replacement by launching a CFRP A320 replacement, Airbus would be investing at much higher risk, it seems to me.

Regarding engines and the chicken and egg situation - if you make the engines, we will make the plane / if you make the plane, we will make the engines. I suspect that a quiet word from Boeing saying that they will launch a 737 replacement in (say) 2 years and anticipate needing 5,000-10,000 engines in the ensuing decade should be sufficient to get the engine makers working to design suitable engines AFAP (where F= fast).

If the situation were different in that Boeing did not have a headstart with CRFP design and production, then I would expect both A and B to milk their current products for ALAP (where L=long).


User currently offlineAvObserver From United States of America, joined Apr 2002, 2445 posts, RR: 9
Reply 25, posted (7 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 3961 times:

Quoting Scbriml (Reply 2):
Hmm, which engines will they hang on this A320 replacement?

With a backlog of around 1,800 A32x I don't see them being in quite such a hurry.

I agree and I don't see either A or B serving up replacements for their still RED-HOT selling single aisles until new gen engines emerge in the next decade. Both A and B have their plates full with other projects and can well afford to wait so I take such news with a grain of salt. Both A & B risk alienating existing narrow-body customers if they rush out replacements too soon; before there's solid progress in engine economics for this segment. I also don't see how Airbus, still tied up with A380 issues and poised to launch the A350XWB, can soon muster the capital and engineering resources to also replace their biggest seller, even if it was deemed prudent. I my mind, the proposed A320E enhancements would make a far more sensible and economical interim upgrade until maturing engine technology made an all-new design a more rational step. I don't think it's yet time to junk the A320 altogether, particularly since Boeing doesn't see replacing the 737NG much before the middle of the next decade.


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