SInGAPORE_AIR
Posts: 11619
Joined: Mon Nov 13, 2000 4:06 am

AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 1:21 am

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.


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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.
 
b757300
Posts: 3914
Joined: Fri Dec 15, 2000 10:27 pm

RE: AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 1:31 am

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."
 
lubcha132
Posts: 2642
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2001 10:37 am

RE: AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 1:35 am

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
 
SInGAPORE_AIR
Posts: 11619
Joined: Mon Nov 13, 2000 4:06 am

RE: AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 1:35 am

 Smile/happy/getting dizzy Always optimistic!
Anyone can fly, only the best Soar.
 
TWA717_200
Posts: 1410
Joined: Tue Nov 23, 1999 3:51 am

RE: AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 1:42 am

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
 
fishmeal
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Joined: Fri Jun 22, 2001 1:40 am

RE: AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 1:56 am

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.
 
transswede
Posts: 969
Joined: Fri Sep 21, 2001 9:30 am

RE: AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 2:00 am

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.
 
Jean Leloup
Posts: 1953
Joined: Fri Apr 06, 2001 10:46 am

RE: AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 2:06 am

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.
 
Guest

RE: AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 2:13 am

B747 isn't the fastest subsonic airliner - the B727-100 is, followed by the B727-200 and the L1011-500!
 
fishmeal
Posts: 71
Joined: Fri Jun 22, 2001 1:40 am

RE: AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 2:29 am

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.
 
TWA717_200
Posts: 1410
Joined: Tue Nov 23, 1999 3:51 am

RE: AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 2:29 am

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...
 
AA737-823
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Joined: Wed Mar 01, 2000 11:10 am

RE: AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 5:44 am

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
 
manni
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Joined: Thu Nov 08, 2001 1:48 am

RE: AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 6:09 am

AA737-823,
I did not get the point. Can you explain it?
SUPPORT THE LEBANESE CIVILIANS
 
transswede
Posts: 969
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RE: AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 6:14 am

>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...
 
TP313
Posts: 264
Joined: Sun Nov 11, 2001 12:37 am

Manni

Thu Nov 22, 2001 8:17 am

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...
 
cedarjet
Posts: 8101
Joined: Mon May 24, 1999 1:12 am

RE: AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 9:31 am

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
 
aztec01
Posts: 128
Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2001 2:30 pm

RE: AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 9:42 am

Hey! Not THIS Aztec!!  Big thumbs up
 
Guest

RE: AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 10:34 am

That's understandable. You fight for survival first, then you get to buy newer plane once you survived.
 
Trvlr
Posts: 4251
Joined: Thu Feb 17, 2000 9:58 am

RE: AMR's Sonic Cruiser Interest Lost...

Thu Nov 22, 2001 2:00 pm

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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