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AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...  
User currently offlineSingapore_Air From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2000, 13738 posts, RR: 19
Posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 1351 times:

Interesting. I don't think AMR will be the first one receiving the SC now. Poor them. I feel sorry for all the US airlines  Sad

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Boeing's Sonic Cruiser Loses Airlines' Attention As Carriers Focus on Survival

Knight Ridder/Tribune - November 20, 2001

Nov. 17--Seven months ago, American Airlines was so hot for Boeing's Sonic Cruiser that chief executive Don Carty jokingly asked the head of Boeing Commercial Airplanes for exclusive dibs on the first three years of production.

But the Dallas-based carrier's ardor for the Sonic Cruiser was snuffed out by the Sept. 11 hijacking of two American jetliners and Monday's crash in New York of another American plane. With American bleeding up to $15 million a day -- and the airline industry preoccupied with survival -- the debut of Boeing's ultrafast plane likely won't come so quickly.

Some of the 15 or so major international airlines working with Boeing to define the proposed plane's characteristics suspended Sonic Cruiser meetings after the terror attacks and have been slow to return Boeing's marketing questionnaires.

Boeing had hoped to use the information to nail down the plane's basic configurations, such as flight range and seat number, by this time. Boeing now plans to firm up initial configurations by early 2002, said Randy Baseler, vice president of marketing for Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

Reflecting the diminished urgency for new aircraft introductions, Boeing officially has decided to forgo derivative engines for the Sonic Cruiser and instead has asked three jet-engine makers for new designs.

The decision will raise the Sonic Cruiser's development costs and may lengthen the wait for its first passengers. Boeing said it would have the airliner ready for service between 2007 and 2008, with the latter entry date predicated on using the latest technologies.

Waiting for more advanced technologies should make the Sonic Cruiser more expensive to buy but cheaper to operate, said Rick Kennedy, a spokesman for GE Aircraft Engines in Cincinnati.

Lowering the Sonic Cruiser's operating costs is one of Boeing's chief engineering challenges. The plane is designed to cruise at Mach 0.95 to Mach 0.98, or 95 to 98 percent of the speed of sound. It would surpass the Boeing 747 as the fastest subsonic jetliner and would be the swiftest passenger jet behind the supersonic Concorde.

But pushing the plane near -- or just above -- the speed of sound burns fuel at a much higher rate. Boeing's goal is to make the Sonic Cruiser no more expensive to fly per mile than the Boeing model it's designed to replace, the 767.

It would accomplish this partly by building the Sonic Cruiser with almost all lightweight composite materials and titanium instead of the usual aluminum wings and fuselage.

But Boeing also is counting on offsetting the Sonic Cruiser's higher fuel burn with savings that are more variable, such as shaving labor costs for pilots and cabin crews with shorter trips and by squeezing more daily flights out of each aircraft because of the quicker turnaround.

Even as it postponed the target date for selecting initial configurations, Boeing has been narrowing the broad range of parameters it announced in March. The Sonic Cruiser originally was set to carry between 100 to 300 passengers, have a range between 6,000 and 10,000 nautical miles and be either single- or twin-aisle.

Boeing since has decided that the first version of the plane will have two aisles, stick close to the middle of the seat range and have a range of at least 7,000 nautical miles. The Sonic Cruiser's flight deck probably will look unlike any current Boeing jetliner models, which all have control yokes instead of side sticks found in Airbus planes.

By taking the additional time to incorporate the latest advances in engineering and other areas, Boeing will end up with "a much more state-of-the-art plane," said Paul Nisbet, an aerospace analyst with JSA Research.

Nisbet expects Boeing to formally launch the Sonic Cruiser program during the 2003 Paris Air Show.

Nisbet said Boeing tried to respond quickly to airlines' initial enthusiasm for the Sonic Cruiser by aiming for an earlier rollout. While that urgency has dissolved since September, Nisbet expects the plane to eventually rekindle longing when better times return to the airlines, including at American.

"Maybe in 2008, they'd still want the first three years' worth," Nisbet said.


-----

To see more of The Seattle Times, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.seattletimes.com.


(c) 2001, The Seattle Times. Distributed by Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News.


Anyone can fly, only the best Soar.
18 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineB757300 From United States of America, joined Dec 2000, 4114 posts, RR: 23
Reply 1, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1248 times:

Right now I doubt many airlines are very interested in new aircraft. Wait a year or two when things get better.


"There is no victory at bargain basement prices."
User currently offlineLubcha132 From United States of America, joined Feb 2001, 2776 posts, RR: 7
Reply 2, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1240 times:

maybe boeing could work on ways to overhaul older aircraft to increase their lifespan. i know this has been tried before but it may be a better solution than buying new aircraft, especially at a time like this. Hopefully all the money spent on research thus far will not be in vain.


Josh


User currently offlineSingapore_Air From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2000, 13738 posts, RR: 19
Reply 3, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1231 times:

 Smile/happy/getting dizzy Always optimistic!


Anyone can fly, only the best Soar.
User currently offlineTWA717_200 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1218 times:

The Sonic Cruiser originally was set to carry between 100 to 300 passengers, have a range between 6,000 and 10,000 nautical miles and be either single- or twin-aisle. Okay....let's add this to: It was to be between 50 and 300 feet long, powered by somewhere between 2 and 8 engines, have at least 3 tires and 1 wing.  Smile

User currently offlineFishmeal From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 66 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1202 times:

What's been said by Airbus about the A380? I wouldn't look forward to seeing one of those with a full load aimed at some downtown skyscraper.

User currently offlineTransSwede From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 1000 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1198 times:

Fishmeal,

Well - I guess we should forbid all planes larger than regional jets, just to be on the safe side. Isn't that locigal?

The A380 project is still going, and will probably just be delayed very slightly.


User currently offlineJean Leloup From Canada, joined Apr 2001, 2116 posts, RR: 19
Reply 7, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1194 times:

Fishmeal, is that a reason not to build it? Personally, I didn't enjoy seing two 767's crash aimed at office buildings, either. So perhaps we should suspend production of them as well, and maybe 757's while we're at it. In fact, maybe we should cease production of any aircraft that has been or could be targeted by terrorists at any particular time.
?



Next flight.... who knows.
User currently offlineCeilidh From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1187 times:

B747 isn't the fastest subsonic airliner - the B727-100 is, followed by the B727-200 and the L1011-500!

User currently offlineFishmeal From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 66 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 1168 times:

TransSwede and Jean Leloup:
You are both correct, of course: the bigger and faster planes will be built becase in the end they make good business sense. The aviation world will be full of pitfalls, and incidents like Sept 11 will happen. It's just sad to think that such amazing technology can be used in these unintended ways.


User currently offlineTWA717_200 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 1167 times:

B747 isn't the fastest subsonic airliner - the B727-100 is, followed by the B727-200 and the L1011-500!

According to the specs. that I've read, that's exactly right. Don't know why everyone insists the 747 is...


User currently offlineAA737-823 From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 5732 posts, RR: 11
Reply 11, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 1116 times:

Well, I agree, 600 passengers is too many to have on an airplane. Nothing against Airbus at all, I just think that's too many. With a 737 rudder hard-over, you lose mabe 170 people. With an A380 rudder... falling off a la A300... you lose... 600. Gee.

I don't know, maybe it's my humanitarian side hanging out.

Also, for those of you (TranSwede) who think it will be delayed just a short time, I think you're mistaken. With Lufthansa pulling out of the program completely, until further notice anyhow, that does not bode well. Other airlines- especially smaller ones- could follow. And who knows how many of those airlines will actually still be in the air by the time the aircraft makes it into production. We're losing more big names every week... Sabena, on and on... Not that Sabena ordered A380s, but you get the point.

Comments?

Randy


User currently offlineManni From South Korea, joined Nov 2001, 4221 posts, RR: 23
Reply 12, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 1104 times:

AA737-823,
I did not get the point. Can you explain it?



SUPPORT THE LEBANESE CIVILIANS
User currently offlineTransSwede From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 1000 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 1097 times:

>Well, I agree, 600 passengers is too many to have on
>an airplane. Nothing against Airbus at all, I just think
>that's too many. With a 737 rudder hard-over, you
>lose mabe 170 people. With an A380 rudder... falling
>off a la A300... you lose... 600. Gee.

Of course, being the unbiased observer that you are, you would find (or would have found) Boeing's 747X "too big"? And what about those JAL 747's with 550 pax?

And why isn't a 170 pax 737 too big when we all could fly small prop's with 4 passengers? Think about it, with a "rudder hard-over" you kill 170 instead of only 4...

I guess cruise ships ought to be limited to few passengers as well...


User currently offlineTP313 From Portugal, joined Nov 2001, 259 posts, RR: 9
Reply 14, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 1073 times:

The point AA737-823 is tring to make
is to show off what he realy is.
What is amazing is that he must
be damn proud of it...


User currently offlineCedarjet From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 8062 posts, RR: 54
Reply 15, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 1048 times:

It's a question of what we're used to. In 20 years time we'll be saying, "Gee, isn't 1,200 pax too many to put on one airliner at once, in case it crashes - those A380 accidents because of the coffee machine explosions was one thing, blimey, 550 people gone at once, that's nothing, but 1,200...too much!"

Maybe we should all fly on nothing bigger than an Aztec.



fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
User currently offlineAztec01 From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 147 posts, RR: 3
Reply 16, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 1039 times:

Hey! Not THIS Aztec!!  Big thumbs up

User currently offlineJiml1126 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 1025 times:

That's understandable. You fight for survival first, then you get to buy newer plane once you survived.

User currently offlineTrvlr From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 4430 posts, RR: 21
Reply 18, posted (12 years 8 months 2 weeks 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 988 times:

I totally agree with what the airlines are feeling right now, but I am confident that in the next few years their interest will appear once again in both the SC and the A380, for that matter.

Aaron G.


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