JulianUK
Topic Author
Posts: 105
Joined: Sat Apr 29, 2006 6:00 am

Cost Index (CI) Questions On FMC

Sun May 21, 2006 6:12 am

Where do you get the cost index setting you need to put into the FMC from? While I know that CI of 0 is for the most economical of flights and CI of 999 is for the most expensive but fastest of flight who is actually giving the pilots the number? Is it handed over before starting the flight?

J
 
VuelingAirbus
Posts: 112
Joined: Fri Aug 26, 2005 4:44 am

RE: Cost Index (CI) Questions On FMC

Sun May 21, 2006 8:15 am

Quoting JulianUK (Thread starter):
While I know that CI of 0 is for the most economical of flights and CI of 999 is for the most expensive but fastest of flight

Most economical/expensive its not quite what it is. CI 0 uses the least fuel but requires the longest time. CI 999 is the fastest and requires the most fuel. You have now time sensitive factors like cost of crew, cost of MX (time to next check - since flight hour based), A/C usage (you can fly more sectors per day if you fly faster) and leasing rate (if based on hours). The cheaper man power (or the higher the productivity of the existing staff) the more fuel prices play into the decision of the CI. In general, the higher the cost of fuel (in percentage) compared to the other houerly costs the lower the CI.

My company uses now 25 and we used to have 40 (a year ago) for all routes and it is usually determined by the performance department. Some other company uses diferent ones for different routes, however it is always on the first page of the computerized comany flight plans...

hope that helped,

rgds...
 
3201
Posts: 813
Joined: Sun Oct 10, 2004 4:16 pm

RE: Cost Index (CI) Questions On FMC

Sun May 21, 2006 8:30 am

Some airlines pay a lot of money for consultants to study their overall costs and give them a single CI to be flown system-wide for all fleets. This seems questionable to me, since these flights are using many different fuel costs and have different economics of being late vs. early vs. on-time based on how delayed their departure is, how early/late in the day they are, whether they're inbound/outbound from hub, etc.

Some airlines use fixed hourly costs and the actual fuel costs of the departure station. This is better than a single value fleet-wide, but not clear how much better.

My experience from working with many airlines is that most of them don't really have a very good idea of what CI they should be using on any given flight. Airline costs are very complicated, and the costs based on time are usually non-linear given crew contracts, schedules to make, connections, next flights for the aircraft/crew, etc., not to mention slots vs. holding in some parts of the world. So maybe what they're doing isn't much worse than trying to do something better from flight to flight, and it's certainly a lot easier.

I guess that doesn't exactly answer your question. I think usually the CI value is standard either fleet-wide or by a combination of fleet and airport-pair or even individual flight, and not determined dynamically so it's just published as a standard operating procedure or a note to crew. There are generally stored notes given to the crew as part of their briefing, classified by the flight or the fleet or the departure airport or the airport pair, and the CI value to use is sometimes just one of those. When it is dynamically determined as part of the flight planning process, it is usually printed directly on the flight plan.

[Edited 2006-05-21 01:32:15]
7 hours aint long-haul
 
JulianUK
Topic Author
Posts: 105
Joined: Sat Apr 29, 2006 6:00 am

RE: Cost Index (CI) Questions On FMC

Sun May 21, 2006 8:33 pm

Quoting VuelingAirbus (Reply 1):
of MX (time to next check - since flight hour based

Thanks for the answers - never thought about this, faster the aircraft flies the less hours it will do therefore its maintenance check is delayed, however a faster flying aircraft will probably have more wear in terms of engines etc than a slow flying one - seems quite a contradiction!

J
 
mcdu
Posts: 902
Joined: Thu Apr 28, 2005 5:23 am

RE: Cost Index (CI) Questions On FMC

Sun May 21, 2006 9:55 pm

Quoting JulianUK (Reply 3):
however a faster flying aircraft will probably have more wear in terms of engines etc than a slow flying one - seems quite a contradiction!

Julian,

Not neccessarily true. A airplane flying at m.86 versus m.80 is not straining the engines or the systems. A jet engine really relies on internal temps to make the difference in longevity and you for the most part must exceed the operating limits to damage the engine. It not like driving around town in your Honda with the Tach in the red to fly at or below the airplanes MMO. The engine really does not know the difference between the speeds. In fact depending on flight conditions you can have the engines on an airplane doing .80 indicating the same EPR/N1/EGT as the airplane doing .86.


As for CI rules, at my company a struggling US legacy carrier that has just emerged from BK, we have a revised CI posted regularly based on the company fuel cost. They provided us with two numbers, early or late. Domestically an early ETA will drive us to the lower CI to save fuel and arrive on time. Often if we arrive too early the stand will be occupied with another aircraft and we spend the time in a holding area on the ramp waiting for a gate. On the international sectors you find yourself married to a specific mach number to maintain the required spacing on the tracks. Therefore the CI goes away and you will see often the plane flown in selected Mach to prevent the airplane from slowing as it gets lighter.
 
CX Flyboy
Posts: 6039
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 1999 6:10 pm

RE: Cost Index (CI) Questions On FMC

Mon May 22, 2006 1:21 am

On the 777, we normally fly at CI60. If we are running late and time is important then the company can issue us with a CI250 plan. Anything more than this burns up too much fuel to be worth it. If we are running ahead of schedule, then we slow down to CI20. Any less than that and as previous posts mention, maintenance costs can go up more.

As for the engines working harder but less time v.s less fuel but more time, it also depends on the deal that the aircraft has with the engine manufacturer, or whether they own their own engines. Some companies lease engines by time used inflight and therefore it may be in their bests interests to fly faster and pay less. maintenance costs within reason may be irrelevant to them. On the other hand, an airline might own their own engines and want to save wear and tear. it really depends.
 
User avatar
zeke
Posts: 9925
Joined: Thu Dec 14, 2006 1:42 pm

RE: Cost Index (CI) Questions On FMC

Mon May 22, 2006 3:22 am

COST 1 nm FLIGHT
---------------------------- = CI
COST 1 nm FUEL
We are addicted to our thoughts. We cannot change anything if we cannot change our thinking – Santosh Kalwar
 
Pihero
Posts: 4206
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2005 5:11 am

RE: Cost Index (CI) Questions On FMC

Mon May 22, 2006 6:42 am

For those interested, this is a paper by the IATA via Airbus.
One of my bibles !
Getting to Grips with the Cost Index
It will answer all your questions and a lot more, like for instance how to obtain max rate of climb.
And it will do away with some misconceptions about the 340, too.

Enjoy !
Contrail designer
 
David L
Posts: 8552
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 2:26 am

RE: Cost Index (CI) Questions On FMC

Mon May 22, 2006 6:56 am

Quoting Pihero (Reply 7):
For those interested, this is a paper by the IATA via Airbus.

More homework?! This forum's hard work.  Smile
 
Pihero
Posts: 4206
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2005 5:11 am

RE: Cost Index (CI) Questions On FMC

Mon May 22, 2006 7:36 am

David,
You'll love that one, and I have a few more for you when you're finished !
Actually, it's full of pragmatic sense, not maths and the flight operations bit won't have any more secret for you.
Your return date on my message board,pretty please ?
Contrail designer
 
David L
Posts: 8552
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 2:26 am

RE: Cost Index (CI) Questions On FMC

Wed May 24, 2006 7:08 am

Quoting Pihero (Reply 9):

Done.

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 15 guests