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Could A Small Intercontinental Commercial A/c Work

Wed Jan 14, 2004 12:56 pm

FoxBravo joked about this yesterday but it lead me to wonder, With RJs being so popular in the US, does anyone think that a long range RJ style aircraft could be beneficial to an airline? Cost wise, how do you think it would compare to a wide body (for price per seat per mile)?
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RE: Could A Small Intercontinental Commercial A/c Work

Wed Jan 14, 2004 1:04 pm

I don't know about costs, but I do know that if I had to spend more than four hours in an RJ i'd go raving mad. Unless it was configured as a business jet, which there are already plenty of.
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RE: Could A Small Intercontinental Commercial A/c Work

Wed Jan 14, 2004 1:11 pm

Extended range versions of the Boeing 737 and Airbus A319 are already being used for quite long flights, ie: trans-atlantic. But, I'm assuming you mean a smaller aircraft flying longer routes than that. I'd venture to say that a good starting point would be to figure out what kind of costs there are associated with operating a Global Express and how many seats can be put in it.
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RE: Could A Small Intercontinental Commercial A/c

Wed Jan 14, 2004 2:38 pm

Seems to me that you'd come into difficulty flying farther than short transatlantic routes if you didn't build a small passenger cabin sitting on top of a larger fuel tank. Hmm... Passenger capacity, 50, fuel tank capacity 100 passenger seats?
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RE: Could A Small Intercontinental Commercial A/c Work

Wed Jan 14, 2004 3:00 pm

The Dassault Falcon Jet is being used for intercontinental routes, and a new version is supposed to be supersonic.

But I doubt you'll see any commercial aircraft that small (actually, compared to some intercontinental biz-jets, it's quite large!).

In any event, there is a critical mass you need for intercontinental travel. Simply because of the distances involved and the resultant fuel burn, larger numbers of passengers have to be grouped together to make a profit.

About the only way you'll see aircraft under 120 pax is if it's supersonic and doesn't burn as much fuel or cost as much to buy as the Concorde. And even 120 pax may be too small. I don't know what kind of 737-NGs and A320s are being used on the trans-Atlantic routes.
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