DFW13L
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BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Fri Jun 16, 2006 1:44 pm

I was wondering why BA has a fleet of 777s with mixed engine types, and how they route each type. The G-VII series seems to be all GE90 while the G-YMM is Rolls Royce. I don't get to London much, but try to spot their 777s when I can in various US airports. I've noticed that in IAH, which gets birds from both LGW and LHR, the LHR is frequently a Rolls Royce, whereas the LGW flights I see in DFW and IAH are usually the GE90. I spot them most frequently in DFW and have only seen the G-VII series there. Further, in DEN recently I saw G-YMMM (Rolls Royce) there from LHR.

Do they concentrate the GE90 fleet at Gatwick and the Rolls Royce out of Heathrow? I know it's not exclusive because I recently flew on G-VIIY to LHR from IAH-ORD.

Just trying to make sense out of it, so if anyone can help straighten me out, it would be apprecaited!
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brons2
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Fri Jun 16, 2006 1:51 pm

On a side note, when I flew a roundtrip on BA last year, I asked the cabin staff what kind of engines the 777 had (KNOWING they were GE90). The cabin staff called the flight deck, and the answer was:

ROLLS ROYCE!

lol.
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FlyDeltaJets
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Fri Jun 16, 2006 1:54 pm

When I used to work at evergreen I saw both types of 777 come in to JFK. The way it appeared to me is that they just routed all of them to all routes.

I heard that they didn't like the performance of the RR so they converted the rest of thier shipments to GE or vice versa, i don't really remember.
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LTU932
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Fri Jun 16, 2006 2:25 pm

Quoting FlyDeltaJets (Reply 2):
I heard that they didn't like the performance of the RR so they converted the rest of thier shipments to GE or vice versa, i don't really remember.

If I'm not mistaken, it actually has something to do with BA not being happy at all with the initial dispatch reliability of the GE90.

However this has obviously changed and now BA might buy even more 777s with GE90s, if they do finally order the 777-300ER.

Quoting DFW13L (Thread starter):
Do they concentrate the GE90 fleet at Gatwick and the Rolls Royce out of Heathrow? I know it's not exclusive because I recently flew on G-VIIY to LHR from IAH-ORD.

It depends. Judging from the database, most if not all of the LGW 777s have GE engines (barring aircraft substitutions or maintenance flights to LGW), while it's a mixed fleet at LHR. The LGW based 777s were ordered to replace the old BCal DC-10s on BA flights that are Bermuda II restricted, along with their leisure routes, and they might be configured differently from the LHR based ones. Somebody correct me if I'm wrong.
 
GDB
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sat Jun 17, 2006 3:29 am

BA certainly did have early issues with 777, but so did others, including UA with PW engines.
Something in all the endless threads on here about 'this new aircraft is having snags...so it sucks' is forgotten about it seems.
It's always been this way folks.

But in 1998, BA wanted more power, this was before Boeing had decided what to do in developing 777 further, (at this stage a Trident 3 style 'boost' engine-but this time in the form of an 'super' APU rather than a separate unit, was even considered).
Something else seemingly forgotten in all the 'will this aircraft design need changing' threads.

But in any case, BA wanted deliveries sooner, from early 2000, so the choice was between developments of the engines then currently available on 777.

Despite what you might have heard/will hear, the choice of engine was open to all three engine makers, it had nothing to do with cancelled BA 747-400 orders (or in thruth, not taken up options).
Because our R/R rep at this time, was certainly not confident R/R would win, he expected GE.
R/R won out through merit.

Remember BA initially brought GE for 777 in 1991, as part of a deal where GE brought out BA's engine overhaul plant in Wales.
We have had quality issues every so often in the following years, two years ago, part of the plant was shut down due oil contamination for a time, helping with the 2nd bad summer in a row BA had.

However, BA recently signed a new contract for GE for engine services, which can mean that things are much better now, or if you are a cynic, that BA have little choice, a powerplant overhaul version of 'Gate Gourmet' caterers, the only game in town, big enough for BA's needs, in the UK.
Or a bit of both perhaps.

However, despite the bad start, GE/777 did in time settle down well in BA service, the issues were well behind BA in 1998 when the new 777 engine contract was signed with R/R.
But BA resolved never to be a, or one of, the launch customers for an all new type again.
 
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sat Jun 17, 2006 3:39 am

Quoting GDB (Reply 5):
However, despite the bad start, GE/777 did in time settle down well in BA service, the issues were well behind BA in 1998 when the new 777 engine contract was signed with R/R.

Since this was with a previous version of the the 777 and a previous model of the the GE engine, I presume that the current GE engines for the 777 may be just as reliable as the Rolls-Royce engines. Would you agree that this is possible?
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LH423
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sat Jun 17, 2006 4:32 am

Quoting DFW13L (Thread starter):
Further, in DEN recently I saw G-YMMM (Rolls Royce) there from LHR.

As DEN is a non-First route it will generally only receive RR 777s G-YMMA-G (if memory serves) as they are the only 777s based at LHR without and F cabin. Sometimes substitutions will be made and the F cabin will be used as a J cabin.

Currently there are no RR-powered 777s based at LGW.

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GDB
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sat Jun 17, 2006 4:38 am

Not sure, GE would have proposed a slightly more powerful plant, or offered what was available there and then, as other customers for GE I presume were getting, AF for one.
The latter I presume since deliveries were required within 18 months of the order.
But based on the by then well proven base GE90. 777 at BA and others did not just have engine related snags at first, the engine suppilier change perhaps gave the impression that problems were still on going in 1998, when they were not.
BA did mods on their GE90's for the 'Denver Hump', to provide that bit more boost operating out of higher airfields, this was in 1997.
 
psimpson
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sat Jun 17, 2006 5:51 am

Quoting DFW13L (Thread starter):

LGW from my knowledge have 10 B777s based there and they are all GE powered aircraft G-VIIA/B/C/D/E/F/O/P/R and T. From time to time you will get LHR GE powered B777s going down to LGW to cover for routine maintenance of the LGW based B777 aircraft.
B777s G-VIIO/P and R have never been based at LHR, wheres the others have seen service at LHR but not for a while in the case of G-VIIA thru G-VIIF, with G-VIIT transferring from LHR sometime during late summer 2005.
BA seem to use the RR powered B777s G-YMMA thru to G-YMMP on all flights to DEN,PVG,DAC,CCU and PEK. The RR B777 G-YMM series then share with the GE B777s G-VII series,G-RAES and G-ZZZA thru G-ZZZC other routes in the BA B777 network. The G-ZZZ series normally operate to the US and Canadian East Coast, plus the Middle East.
 
dynkrisolo
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sat Jun 17, 2006 12:56 pm

Quoting GDB (Reply 5):
Despite what you might have heard/will hear, the choice of engine was open to all three engine makers, it had nothing to do with cancelled BA 747-400 orders (or in thruth, not taken up options).

You have said this many times, but you're wrong on this one.

Check this Boeing press release when BA ordered the 777s in 1998:

http://www.boeing.com/commercial/news/1998/news_release_980825a.html

Quote:

The order for 16 firm airplanes and 16 options is valued at nearly $5 billion. With this order, British Airways has ordered a total of 45 777-200s and a total of 306 Boeing airplanes. In a move intended to meet the changing demands of the airline's fleet requirements, some of these airplanes will be substituted for five firm 747-400s currently on order.

I wouldn't say the potential engine cancellation fees as the primary factor for BA's 777 engine switch, but it definitely played a role. Like you said, the availability of a higher thrust version of the Trent 800 at that time was probably the most important factor.
 
AC777LR
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sat Jun 17, 2006 1:30 pm

I mostly see the Trent powered BA777s in YYZ, the odd time you will see one of the GE90s but 9 times out of 10 its RR.
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aircanada333
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sat Jun 17, 2006 2:49 pm

I'm living in Montreal and BA are only bringing G-YMMA/B/C/D/E/F in town. I saw the BA T7 in YUL about 150 times and the only special thing I saw was G-ZZZB/G-YMMJ and G-VIIX(diversion).

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N1120A
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sat Jun 17, 2006 3:19 pm

Quoting LTU932 (Reply 4):
If I'm not mistaken, it actually has something to do with BA not being happy at all with the initial dispatch reliability of the GE90.

Actually, the reason for the switch was multifold. First, BA wanted to replace some 744 orders with 772 orders and thus had to do something about their contract for 20 RB211s plus spares for those 744s, so they got Trents. Additionally, yes, the Trent 895 is the most powerful 772ER engine that actually gets acceptable fuel economy but hindsight being 20/20 and BA would have gotten the Trent 892. Beyond this, on most flights within the range band on which BA operates the 772ER, the weight advantage of the Trent overcomes the fuel burn advantage the GE90 has

Quoting Dynkrisolo (Reply 10):
Like you said, the availability of a higher thrust version of the Trent 800 at that time was probably the most important factor.

No, that was likely only of moderate importance since the GE90 had plenty of power.
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dynkrisolo
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sat Jun 17, 2006 10:16 pm

Quoting N1120A (Reply 13):
the weight advantage of the Trent overcomes the fuel burn advantage the GE90 has

That's incorrect. The GE90 has better fuel burn despite being heavier.

Quoting N1120A (Reply 13):
No, that was likely only of moderate importance since the GE90 had plenty of power.

That's incorrect again. When BA placed their 777 orders with Trent 895, GE only had the GE90-90B. The GE90-94B was later launched by Air France.
 
GDB
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sun Jun 18, 2006 4:36 am

As stated, I well remember this at the time, despite a switch around of types the new 777 order entailed, our R/R people were pleasantly surprised by winning.

Of course, they and most of us, thought it was a case of BA ordering the engine they should have had in the first place.
(This feeling boosted by another Olympus back from GE in Wales, with some defect or other. But that's OK, those who did it got an in house prize for fast engine turnaround).
 
dynkrisolo
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sun Jun 18, 2006 7:40 am

Quoting GDB (Reply 15):
As stated, I well remember this at the time, despite a switch around of types the new 777 order entailed, our R/R people were pleasantly surprised by winning.

The two facts were BA substituted some of the old 747 orders with new 777 orders.

Also, BA opted for the higher gross weight 772er. The Trent 895 would have better takeoff performance than the GE90-90B.

So, whatever you remember the RR people had told you would not change those two facts.
 
Carpethead
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sun Jun 18, 2006 1:17 pm

Is there a timetable for replacements of the non-ER 772s?
Granted they don't have a single widebody aircraft on order.
 
flydreamliner
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sun Jun 18, 2006 1:28 pm

Quoting LTU932 (Reply 4):
If I'm not mistaken, it actually has something to do with BA not being happy at all with the initial dispatch reliability of the GE90.

....they switched from their first 777s being RR powered to their newer ones being GE, and if not mistaken, GE90 powered 777s are supposed to have amongst the best dispatch reliabilities in the industry. I know Air France-KLM and Continental have made statements praising the outstanding dispatch reliability of their GE90 powered 777 fleets.

In reality I think it had more to do with better burn rates and more take-off thrust from the GE90-94's.
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dalb777
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sun Jun 18, 2006 1:36 pm

Quoting FlyDreamliner (Reply 18):
....they switched from their first 777s being RR powered to their newer ones being GE

Incorrect, the older 777s are GE powered, and the newer 777s are RR powered.

BA's very first 777, GE powered:


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AirbusA6
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sun Jun 18, 2006 2:44 pm

Where do the early "A" models fly to? Can they cross the atlantic without any payload restrictions?
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aircanada333
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sun Jun 18, 2006 3:07 pm

Quoting Dalb777 (Reply 19):
BA's very first 777, GE powered

What the hell was it doing in CDG???
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GDB
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sun Jun 18, 2006 3:43 pm

Dynkrisolo, well you proved my point then, Trent was picked in 1998 because it was the best choice at that time. For BA's requirements.
Not because of some orders owed to R/R, which has become some plane spotter article of faith.

GE did agressively compete, our R/R reps worked with those from Snecma, who of course had a stake in GE, they thought BA would stick to GE.
PW did compete too, not that they had much chance.

And yes I DO remember it, I was in that organisation then, were you?
Excuse me for that, an increasing disadvatage on here isn't it?
 
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LTU932
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sun Jun 18, 2006 5:08 pm

Quoting AirbusA6 (Reply 20):
Where do the early "A" models fly to? Can they cross the atlantic without any payload restrictions?

Yes, they can. UA still flies lots of 772As across the Atlantic to IAD and maybe also ORD and JFK as well. They certainly don't have as much range as the -ERs, but it was plenty enough for regular transatlantic hops.

Quoting Aircanada333 (Reply 21):
What the hell was it doing in CDG???

My guess would be crew familiarisation. Though sometimes BA sends even a 747 to CDG as an aircraft substitution or temporary upgrade due to demand.
 
Tristarsteve
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sun Jun 18, 2006 6:54 pm

Quoting Aircanada333 (Reply 21):
What the hell was it doing in CDG???

When the B777 were first introduced they operated a LHR CDG schedule for the first summer season for crew training purposes.
The same happened a few years earlier with the first B744.
 
EI747SYDNEY
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sun Jun 18, 2006 7:21 pm

Might be the fact that RR are British

Just a tought

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Rj111
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sun Jun 18, 2006 7:45 pm

Quoting Dynkrisolo (Reply 14):
That's incorrect. The GE90 has better fuel burn despite being heavier.

It might have better TSFB but it's carrying more weight. In general the Trent burns less below 4000nms and the GE burns less above this mark - when weight is factored in.

[Edited 2006-06-18 12:45:46]
 
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chrisnh
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Sun Jun 18, 2006 8:19 pm

I have only been on a few BA 777s, and those were several years ago. But I don't see any real pattern based on the planes I've been on:

1997: Boston to Heathrow, G-VIIG
1999: Heathrow to Boston, G-VIIG (again)
2000: Boston to Heathrow, G-YMMC
2000: Heathrow to Boston, G-VIIU

I'm reasonably sure that Boston (along with probably Montreal and New York) are among the shortest 'long-haul' routes that BA flies, and consequently can take any 777 has in the fleet.

Chris in NH
 
dynkrisolo
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Mon Jun 19, 2006 2:01 am

Quoting GDB (Reply 22):
Dynkrisolo, well you proved my point then, Trent was picked in 1998 because it was the best choice at that time. For BA's requirements.
Not because of some orders owed to R/R, which has become some plane spotter article of faith.

That was not what I said, and that was not what you said. I said it was a combination of factors, cancellation of RB211 powered 744s being one of them. AF via ILFC helped launch the GE90-94B just a few months after BA's T895 order. It means GE could have easily launched the -94B for BA, but BA obviously had other things on their mind. You said BA didn't cancel any 744s in place of the newly ordered 772ers which was clearly wrong. If you think the RB211 cancellation penalty had not been a factor, then you are being naive.

Quote:

GE did agressively compete, our R/R reps worked with those from Snecma, who of course had a stake in GE, they thought BA would stick to GE.
PW did compete too, not that they had much chance.

It was just an opinion of someone. A deal would take a whole team of people to close. During a campaign, different people from the same team could have widely different opinions because everyone had slightly different perspective. But the following three factors were facts, not opinions:


  • BA wanted to cancel 744/RB211 orders
  • GE didn't have a higher thrust engine on the table, even if they did, it would take time to certificate
  • In 1998, after < 3 years of 772/GE experience, BA faced a lot of teething issues with the GE90 which were not resolved by then.


Quote:

And yes I DO remember it, I was in that organisation then, were you?

If you were not involved in the deal, your info was secondhand at best. Also, how many parties were involved in the campaign? How do you know if I wasn't with another "organization"? So, please don't flash your BA association. It means absolutely nothing if you can't get the simple fact straight! Who I was with is not important. I will let the fact speak for itself.

Quote:

Excuse me for that, an increasing disadvatage on here isn't it?

Not being able to get the most simple fact right would be a serious disadvantage.

Quoting RJ111 (Reply 26):
It might have better TSFB but it's carrying more weight. In general the Trent burns less below 4000nms and the GE burns less above this mark - when weight is factored in.

More weight is true, in fact, significantly more weight. But GE90 burns less fuel on all sector lengths even when weight is factored in. I have heard better fuel burns on trips shorter than 3,000nm was claimed by RR before the aircraft was certificated. But after all engines have entered into service, I have not heard anyone from RR making that claim anymore.
 
GDB
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Mon Jun 19, 2006 2:47 am

Dnkrisolo
Are talking at cross purposes?
I NEVER said BA did not cancel some 747 orders, I alluded to it in previously, of course I knew about it, it was well announced at the time, internally.

Yes I do know that a number of factors decide the choice, as always.

You said Trent 895 offered more power, we know BA wanted more power.

It would have been easier for BA, at first sight, to stick with GE.

So I don't get what you are trying to say, it does not say 'lawyer' on your profile after all.

I don't see where I have not got my facts straight, unless you get off being obtuse for the hell of it.

'Flash my BA association?' Maybe, to help illustrate a point, to sometimes given a different perspective not governed all the 'analysts' over quoted on here all the time these days (who told us after BA picked GE in 1991, that was the end of R/R in big civil fans).

Internal BA briefings at the time, were explicit, BA were conducting an evaluation of all 3 777 engine makers.

The only point I've argued here is that switching to 777's and cancelling some 747 orders, made the engine choice of BA's 1998 buy of 777's, a certainty for R/R.
If you are arguing the opposite, well you are wrong, hard as that might be to accept.
 
dynkrisolo
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Mon Jun 19, 2006 3:36 am

Quoting GDB (Reply 29):
I NEVER said BA did not cancel some 747 orders,

Really?

Lemme see:

Quoting GDB (Reply 5):
it had nothing to do with cancelled BA 747-400 orders (or in thruth, not taken up options).

They were not options. They were orders for five 744s! Enough said.
 
GDB
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Mon Jun 19, 2006 5:09 am

Oh get you.

OK, some ORDERS were canx. In any event, BA chose to buy some more 777's, a few less (out of an already large 747 fleet) 747's at the same time.
Clearly some linkage, in airframe requirements.

What has this to do with the selection of R/R on the 1998 777 order?
Because I've only ever seen it mentioned on here.
It was not even hinted at 'on the ground'.

Believe me, I was well aware of the early GE90 problems, analysing them was part of my job prior to April 1997, there were airframe issues too.

By 1998, the issues were pretty much ironed out, it was/is a popular engine with crews and engineers.
Were there issues afterwards, almost certainly, like other engines, like other airframes, with the AD's and SB's to issued to rectify them.

777 introduction was more problematic than most, now it's about the most highly regarded aircraft BA have, economically and technically.
It was so by 1998 too.

Perhaps expectations were just too high before delivery, BA had been part of the 777 'working together' group after all.

It did put BA off being a launch customer again, but that's not a pure 777 issue, had another all new type been similar, it would likely have had the same effect on BA policy.

But, like it or not, GE did very seriously compete for the 1998 order.
It was not a R/R shoo-in.
That's a myth, not the only one on here to be sure.
 
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AA777223
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Mon Jun 19, 2006 5:32 am

Quoting Dynkrisolo (Reply 28):
GE didn't have a higher thrust engine on the table, even if they did, it would take time to certificate

Despite the acrimonious discussion going on concerning the cause for the choice of RR vs. GE, I can't seem to understand this point. Why wasn't the GE90- 94B available sooner? It acheived 127,000 lbs of thrust even in its early tests, so what gives? I realize it must be made to perform reliably, sustainably, and economically, but with that huge core, acheiving 76k should've been a cinch, and squeezing an extra 4k out of an already 90K lb of thrust engine should have been simple. I appreciate your replies.
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dynkrisolo
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Mon Jun 19, 2006 5:59 am

Quoting GDB (Reply 31):
What has this to do with the selection of R/R on the 1998 777 order?

Because there would have been an unfavorable financial hit. BA couldn't just walk away from their RR commitment bound by a contract.

Quote:
By 1998, the issues were pretty much ironed out,

I would agree with you on the airframe side, but I can't agree with you on the engine side. I would say on the engine side, it took a few more years, because some of the issues took some time to surface.

Quote:
But, like it or not, GE did very seriously compete for the 1998 order.

Did I say GE didn't seriously compete?

Quote:

It was not a R/R shoo-in.

Did I say RR was a shoo-in?

I did say with all factors considered, it was not a surprise why RR came out ahead.

Quote:

That's a myth, not the only one on here to be sure.

The RB211 744 cancellation was a factor, but not the sole factor. Like it or not, it was not a myth. It was also noted in the media.

Quoting AA777223 (Reply 32):
I can't seem to understand this point. Why wasn't the GE90-94B available sooner? It acheived 127,000 lbs of thrust even in its early tests, so what gives?

If you have read the Forbes article on the Boeing-GE engine exclusivity deal on the 772lr/773er back in 2000, you would know that at one point GE's CEO Jack Welch was not keen on the GE90 program. He didn't want to spend any more money. It was not a matter of technical issues, but it was a matter of financial issues.
 
AirbusA6
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Mon Jun 19, 2006 3:05 pm

Quoting Dynkrisolo (Reply 33):
If you have read the Forbes article on the Boeing-GE engine exclusivity deal on the 772lr/773er back in 2000, you would know that at one point GE's CEO Jack Welch was not keen on the GE90 program. He didn't want to spend any more money. It was not a matter of technical issues, but it was a matter of financial issues.

Indeed, at one point the GE90 looked a bit of a white elephant. I'm sure BA must have been a bit embarrassed, dumping their traditional engine supplier only to find that the Trent 800 had become the most popular option!
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GDB
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RE: BA 777 Rolls Royce Vs GE90

Tue Jun 20, 2006 1:40 am

I agree that R/R selection was not anything as like as surprising as the GE90 selection 6 years before, but it certainly surprised some commentators.
And some within the airline.

The 'kiss seal' issue on GE90 went on a bit, but by 1997/1998, the 777 was regulary coming out on top of BA fleet reliability stats.
Being called, by BA in public, a 'robust' aircraft.

We had it a bit easier early on than UA (with ironically PW), but they rather threw 777 in at the deep end on entering service.
Remember that leaked (to the Wall Street Journal) letter from UA, castigating 777 reliability issues?
But by the time it was made public, the issues were either solved or well on the way to being so.

My understanding of the BA 1998 engine evaluation, was that R/R put a Trent at 95,000lb thrust on the table, GE promised 94,000, but were reluctant to go further.
Of course, they were starting to raise their sights higher, for Boeing's proposed growth 777 models, so long as they got to be the only suppilier on these future models, such was the investment in these new engines.

I do understand how it must look for a major airline like BA, to change engine horses in mid stream, having been an intial 777/GE90 customer.
Sometimes things don't happen in orderly straight lines.