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Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:17 am

Another interesting interview with retiring John Leahy. This time he addresses the A380 engine technology:

“We brought out and launched the 380 in 2000. We’re out there with the 380 and GE and Pratt & Whitney and Rolls-Royce are assuring us there is nothing on the horizon. This is best level of engine technology you can get.”

The engine OEMs assured Airbus, Leahy said, that the A380 engines would be state of the art for the next 10 years.

“Then, within three years, these guys are there with Boeing with the 787 with game-changing engine technology and 10% lower fuel burn than the last generation engines,” Leahy says.

“You stand around and say, these guys knew what they had. They were working on it. They knew it was a big step. They kept their mouths shut and even intentionally misled us with the 380 technology, because why wouldn’t you have just wait two or three years with the 380 to get the new generation engines if you thought there was a new generation engine on the horizon?

“They wanted to sell their own generation engines. None of our engineers knew it. None of our product development people were aware of it. That was a real strategic mistake. I’d love to have an A380 now with 10% lower fuel burn.


Article
https://leehamnews.com/2018/02/16/leahy ... 80-future/

As lightsaber once pointed it, the current A380 engines were basically "frankensteined" from existing technology at that time.
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jeffrey0032j
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:52 am

On hindsight, if they had waited 3 years, they would had even lesser orders in a post-9/11, Asian SARS landscape.
 
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:53 am

I know on the RR site the T900 are slightly compromised to meet the stringent LHR nght noise restrictions.

Anyway I guess it is less relevant because the A380 is mostly about capacity & CASM and has little competition.

Even the 747-8 (with GENX engines) proved incapable of matching that.

All the better they can now do a generation ahead of GENX/T1000 on the A380NEO.

Slightly better BPR, higher temps, OPR, better carbon fans, etc.

Image

We are talking 1999/2000 I guess.

Maybe if none of Airbus engineers knew it, none of product development people were aware, they should have been be more outgoing, participating ..

GE working together with Boeing to shield off their 777 investments has been clear from the start, even admitted.

GENX built on evolutionairy GE90 technology.
Last edited by keesje on Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:59 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Noshow
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:57 am

Now with the A320neo Airbus took the opposite approach with the latest technology engines. They hurt again this time with teething troubles and limited availability and reliability.
 
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:59 am

I remember from my university days that the A380 engines are bigger than they need to be for noise reasons. As the fan diameter increases the propulsive efficiency increases but the weight increases and there is a sweet spot where these cross over, for the A380 they go over the sweet spot as this give a better noise profile. In essence they traded noise for fuel burn. Somewhere at the back of my head there is a 3% number (if this is the fuel burn hit or the diameter increase beyond optimum I can't remember.

Fred
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fcogafa
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 12:11 pm

Not my fault the A380 didn't sell better, it was the engine manufacturers fault, it's not fair....
 
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 12:54 pm

fcogafa wrote:
Not my fault the A380 didn't sell better, it was the engine manufacturers fault, it's not fair....



I must have missed him saying that. Can you point to him saying that is the reason it didn't sell? I think he is just voicing his disappointment that the engine OEMs told him there is no new engine technology on the horizon when this was patently false.
 
bigjku
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 1:12 pm

enzo011 wrote:
fcogafa wrote:
Not my fault the A380 didn't sell better, it was the engine manufacturers fault, it's not fair....



I must have missed him saying that. Can you point to him saying that is the reason it didn't sell? I think he is just voicing his disappointment that the engine OEMs told him there is no new engine technology on the horizon when this was patently false.


I am sorry but this is a big boy game. The most likely answer isn’t that anyone lied. It’s that the engine builders saw a relatively tiny market for what the A380 offered and wouldn’t commit billions to push forward. On the other hand they saw large opportunity on the 787, A350, A330NEO space and were quite willing to invest money for that.

For a huge variety of reasons beyond even volume of engines the economics of those programs likely looked very different to the OEM. The customer bases would be much broader making follow up revenue much more likely.

The fundamental issue for the A380 from day one has been the same. Not enough people want to buy it.

Why didn’t it get better engines? Because not enough people wanted to buy it.

Why hasn’t it been stretched? Because it enough people wanted to buy it.

Why hasn’t it gotten new engines? Because not enough people wanted to buy it.

They built the plane they wanted to build. Not what the markets wanted. Everything else seems like noise at this point.
 
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Faro
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 1:23 pm

The magnitude and timing of new engine incremental technology drives everything...

No 747/DC-10/L1011 if it weren't for high-bypass...no 767/A310 if it weren't for second iteration/generation high-bypass...etc, etc...

If GE/PW/RR deliberately held off on their mid-term (ie, 2-5 year) engine technology developments in order to sell existing technology...they effectively scr#wed Airbus...

But then when exactly were 787 engine specifications released by GE/RR?


Faro
Last edited by Faro on Fri Feb 16, 2018 1:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 1:23 pm

keesje wrote:
Anyway I guess it is less relevant because the A380 is mostly about capacity & CASM and has little competition.

And lots of open production slots and little sales.

All the better they can now do a generation ahead of GENX/T1000 on the A380NEO.

A scan of aviation web sites shows that RR is now pitching their new tech for Boeing NMA and is not pitching it for A380neo -- go figure...

GENX built on evolutionairy GE90 technology.

Pretty much all technology in aviation can be viewed as being evolutionary these days, but GE90-115B was the best engine available for a decade or so, which is a pretty remarkable run. No wonder Boeing wanted to keep it all to itself!

fcogafa wrote:
Not my fault the A380 didn't sell better, it was the engine manufacturers fault, it's not fair....

The article should be re-titled "A380 Apologist's Manifesto".

Blame bad timing. Blame bad luck. Blame a bad economy.

Don't blame our terrible product definition and market projections. Don't blame our execution failures. Don't give any credit to 777, 787 or A350 for having an impact.

Blame the engine manufacturers for sandbagging us. Don't blame us for not digging deeper and figuring out where things were going.

Air traffic doubles every fifteen years. Don't look back and realize that the A380 has been on the market for longer than that and is a dismal failure, look forward and presume that it's going to be the main solution for airport congestion. Ignore how the market has actually evolved the last fifteen years when A380 was primed to make its mark but missed.

Ignore the fact that we just tried to make the numbers work on a NEO and we couldn't.

Ignore the fact that the only customer who has been buying the aircraft is trying to squeeze out the only engine manufacturer who has invested in the engine in the last decade.

Ignore the fact that we've committed to keeping the product in production for the next seven or so years without enough orders to make a profit over that time.

Ignore the fact that the first frames to come on to the used market are not being taken up so you can't count on a long term return on investment.

It'll all turn around, the market will discover how right we've been all along! :biggrin:
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 1:27 pm

bigjku wrote:
enzo011 wrote:
fcogafa wrote:
Not my fault the A380 didn't sell better, it was the engine manufacturers fault, it's not fair....



I must have missed him saying that. Can you point to him saying that is the reason it didn't sell? I think he is just voicing his disappointment that the engine OEMs told him there is no new engine technology on the horizon when this was patently false.


I am sorry but this is a big boy game. The most likely answer isn’t that anyone lied. It’s that the engine builders saw a relatively tiny market for what the A380 offered and wouldn’t commit billions to push forward. On the other hand they saw large opportunity on the 787, A350, A330NEO space and were quite willing to invest money for that.

For a huge variety of reasons beyond even volume of engines the economics of those programs likely looked very different to the OEM. The customer bases would be much broader making follow up revenue much more likely.

The fundamental issue for the A380 from day one has been the same. Not enough people want to buy it.

Why didn’t it get better engines? Because not enough people wanted to buy it.

Why hasn’t it been stretched? Because it enough people wanted to buy it.

Why hasn’t it gotten new engines? Because not enough people wanted to buy it.

They built the plane they wanted to build. Not what the markets wanted. Everything else seems like noise at this point.

The engine OEMs heard from Airbus that they would be splitting a 750-1000 frame market and came to the same conclusion many of us did at the time that they would actually be splitting a 400 frame market.

They saw a 75k thrust engine and asked "will this apply anywhere else?" The answer was no. EA had already seen the cancellation of the 747-500/600 so they were wary of Airbus claims of such a huge market. Rolls likely had similar reservations.
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:02 pm

Revelation wrote:

GENX built on evolutionairy GE90 technology.

Pretty much all technology in aviation can be viewed as being evolutionary these days, but GE90-115B was the best engine available for a decade or so, which is a pretty remarkable run. No wonder Boeing wanted to keep it all to itself!


https://www.geaviation.com/press-release/jv-archive/gp7000-core-test-key-milestone-leading-final-engine-design

:scratchchin:

Leahy has been whining for years being discriminated by GE, nothing new.

If, looking back, it was really wise of GE to do the pro Boeing strategy they did.. Maybe hundreds of 777 will be replaced by A350's in the next 6 years. (BA, AF, CX, UA, JAL, DL, KL, SQ, QR) In that case, it probably wasn't the mother of all smart partnerships. But that's looking back.

The engine OEMs heard from Airbus that they would be splitting a 750-1000 frame market and came to the same conclusion many of us did at the time that they would actually be splitting a 400 frame market.

They saw a 75k thrust engine and asked "will this apply anywhere else?" The answer was no. EA had already seen the cancellation of the 747-500/600 so they were wary of Airbus claims of such a huge market. Rolls likely had similar reservations.


Maybe there was a twin needing lbs 75k ? I've seen GE doing powerplay over and over, recently on the 797.
Question is if they are overplaying their hand / helping RR & PW..
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:17 pm

So to be clear, if the engine OEM's had delayed the introduction of the A380 by an additional 3 years Airbus and its Sales Professionals would have been supportive.
I guess I can follow his logic, it would have allowed Airbus to quietly resolve the software version issue, there would have been no need to hand wire the first few frames, the A380F would not have been cancelled since they would have had an additional 3 years to marshal all the resources to complete both a/c at the same time and the 787 and A350 would be dead ducks since those a/c would not have the numbers purchased since the CASM of the A380 would be eating their lunch.

So the aviation market today would look much different, FedEx and UPS would have A380F's flying around, more A380's would be with more carriers, the initial frames coming off lease would have ready takers, world traffic numbers would be up but actual a/c would be lower as more A380's would be carrying a larger load versus the numerous big twins........one can only say if only the engine OEM's were not such a dis-ingenious bunch, we can understand GE and PW as they are American and fully against the A380 killing off the 747, but RR......they must be related to Arnold.
 
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:21 pm

keesje wrote:
If, looking back, it was really wise of GE to do the pro Boeing strategy they did.. Maybe hundreds of 777 will be replaced by A350's in the next 6 years. (BA, AF, CX, UA, JAL, DL, KL, SQ, QR) In that case, it probably wasn't the mother of all smart partnerships. But that's looking back.

So you are certain that now that RR has exclusivity on the A350, these carriers will stay with RR whatever new a/c and engine is produced.....but that is looking forward which is fine.
 
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:24 pm

Leahy's whines are louder than the engines he criticises.Not just with the A380 he has said the same for the equally ill considered quads the A340 double series.If you always blame other people (clearly he does) you never learn.
And clearly he hasn't.Sad.
He still remains probably the greatest ever aircraft salesman.But marketing?Nah.

PS if he really cared about Airbus's future rather than his own image would he really be saying these things?
Please just go gracefully.
 
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:32 pm

Sounds like sour grapes. Aircraft manufacturers should be used to being shrewd negotiators and should have a deeper level of understanding of engine technology than what he’s suggesting. It’s not reasonable to blame the engine manufacturers 18 years later.
 
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:35 pm

enzo011 wrote:
fcogafa wrote:
Not my fault the A380 didn't sell better, it was the engine manufacturers fault, it's not fair....



I must have missed him saying that. Can you point to him saying that is the reason it didn't sell? I think he is just voicing his disappointment that the engine OEMs told him there is no new engine technology on the horizon when this was patently false.


Enzo011 go back and reread the article he is saying just that. Although he actually never utters those exact words the meaning is there he is partly blaming engine manufactures for the slow sales of the A380 and he probably has a point when he states Airbus was mislead. But what Leahy does not want to admit is the fact that Airbus misread the markets future needs, in my opinion Airbus was focus on a few factors when they green lit the A380 program those were airport congestion, limited slots are certain airports, the age of most 747's and finally the fact that Boeing's 744 sales had slowed and the only real replacement Boeing had for the 747-2/3/4s was the 772ER and the 77W which entered service in 2004. In my opinion Airbus thought Boeing dropped the ball and was banking on most 747 operators ordering the A380 as their current 747-2/3/4s came up for retirement. But the reality was Boeings 77W became the replacement for a lot of 747s, the US3 didn't order a single A380 stating the product doesn't fit their current system of where customers prefer frequency. Airbus didn't secure a single order from JL, or NH both of which had a large 747 fleet at the time instead they both oder the 77W, CX which also had a very large 747 fleet as well chose the 77W, Chinese airlines which were expected to need a ton of VLAs only order a handful of A380s, India another country which was forecasted at the time to see a boom in demand for air travel still has no airline with a single A380. Then last but not least was Europe a region that had plenty of airlines with 747s in their fleet a lot of congestion and the famously slot controlled LHR. Airbus probably thought Europe would be ripe for the picking, the A380 would be the natural replacement for many of those 747s European airlines had in their fleet. While some European Airlines have the A380 in service their fleets are extremely small when compared to the size of their 747 fleets back in 2000. Instead of going bigger many airlines around the world have gone smaller and instead have chosen to cram more seats into smaller aircraft like the 77W, 772ER, 787-8/9, A330, A350.

Could the next generation engine technology driven more A380 sales that is difficult to answer because even back in 2000 many airlines were starting to use 772ERs and if I'm not mistaken A332s on routes that for decades had been flown utilizing 3 and or 4 engine aircraft. I think Airbus correctly forecasted a rise in demand for air travel I just don't think they envision that rise would be on twins and not quads like their A380.

Not to high jack the thread but another part of this article that stood out to me was Leahy's quote about the 787.

"If there was a strategic mistake, it was we were blindsided when they brought out the 787, with the composite fuselage and the engine technology. That’s part of the problem with the 380,”
https://leehamnews.com/2018/02/16/leahy ... 80-future/

Was Boeing just that good at covering their steps and hiding their desire to expand the use of composite in aircraft like the 787 or where their signs that Airbus miss and could have used in their A380. How were they blindsided by the 787 perhaps it is a topic for another thread but it is a very interesting quote from Leahy non the less.
Last edited by jayunited on Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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par13del
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:38 pm

jayunited wrote:
Was Boeing just that good at covering their steps and hiding their desire to expand the use of composite in aircraft like the 787 or where their signs that Airbus miss and could have used in their A380. How were they blindsided by the 787 perhaps it is a topic for another thread but it is a very interesting quote from Leahy non the less.

I thought the A380 has massive composite structures, if so what is he talking about?
 
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:45 pm

par13del wrote:
jayunited wrote:
Was Boeing just that good at covering their steps and hiding their desire to expand the use of composite in aircraft like the 787 or where their signs that Airbus miss and could have used in their A380. How were they blindsided by the 787 perhaps it is a topic for another thread but it is a very interesting quote from Leahy non the less.

I thought the A380 has massive composite structures, if so what is he talking about?


He does not go into detail so I have no idea what he means when he stated Airbus was blindsided by the 787s and the use of composites. It is a interesting article I think everyone on this thread should read it.
 
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:50 pm

Revelation wrote:
keesje wrote:
Anyway I guess it is less relevant because the A380 is mostly about capacity & CASM and has little competition.

And lots of open production slots and little sales.

All the better they can now do a generation ahead of GENX/T1000 on the A380NEO.

A scan of aviation web sites shows that RR is now pitching their new tech for Boeing NMA and is not pitching it for A380neo -- go figure...

GENX built on evolutionairy GE90 technology.

Pretty much all technology in aviation can be viewed as being evolutionary these days, but GE90-115B was the best engine available for a decade or so, which is a pretty remarkable run. No wonder Boeing wanted to keep it all to itself!

fcogafa wrote:
Not my fault the A380 didn't sell better, it was the engine manufacturers fault, it's not fair....

The article should be re-titled "A380 Apologist's Manifesto".

Blame bad timing. Blame bad luck. Blame a bad economy.

Don't blame our terrible product definition and market projections. Don't blame our execution failures. Don't give any credit to 777, 787 or A350 for having an impact.

Blame the engine manufacturers for sandbagging us. Don't blame us for not digging deeper and figuring out where things were going.

Air traffic doubles every fifteen years. Don't look back and realize that the A380 has been on the market for longer than that and is a dismal failure, look forward and presume that it's going to be the main solution for airport congestion. Ignore how the market has actually evolved the last fifteen years when A380 was primed to make its mark but missed.

Ignore the fact that we just tried to make the numbers work on a NEO and we couldn't.

Ignore the fact that the only customer who has been buying the aircraft is trying to squeeze out the only engine manufacturer who has invested in the engine in the last decade.

Ignore the fact that we've committed to keeping the product in production for the next seven or so years without enough orders to make a profit over that time.

Ignore the fact that the first frames to come on to the used market are not being taken up so you can't count on a long term return on investment.

It'll all turn around, the market will discover how right we've been all along! :biggrin:
It is an amazing article. Airbus (or at least Leahy) still have a giant blind spot when it comes to the A380, which is odd because their vision is pretty good with everything else.
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:54 pm

I hope JL writes a book. It would be epic!
 
CHI87LG
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:55 pm

Imagine if you worked for a company tasked with designing an engine for an airplane that will, by virtue of its size, sell fewer units over its lifespan.

You understand that you'll be asked to support these engines for their life and only a handful of operators will ever use them.

Are you going to advocate for pouring everything into the engine, in a sort of moonshot, to impress people with the incredible R&D you've done?

No.

You're going to just meet the specs, evaluate the costs and shop around for other projects to boost profits.
 
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:56 pm

The late great Bill Shankly on Brian Clough: “Laddie, that man scored 200 goals in 270 matches – an incredible record – and he has won cup after cup as a manager. When he talks, pin back your ears. Come on guys, we know the A380 hasn't been a success. But now Leahy's retired we're getting bit by bit his perception of why. And we still get the same old keyboard warriors ignoring or ridiculing him, and spouting their simplistic crap. He may be wrong, on this point I suspect not, but at least accept he has an insight we don't.

@bigjku "The fundamental issue for the A380 from day one has been the same. Not enough people want to buy it." - Of course, but not really helpful. And inverting cause and effect isn't either. Why didn't people want to buy it? There's a tendency on here, particularly from the more ... insular kind of American, to anthropomorphise these corporations, and talk about national pride etc. The reality is, these were smart people. It would be great to analyse where things went wrong sensibly, but A.Net isn't the place to do it unfortunately. I personally think 3 things

  • Leahy is correct in saying that Airbus didn't set the agenda at Engine manufacturers, but I feel it was an inevitable part of Airbus not being a peer of Boeings until around the turn of the century. Given the inherent lag in aircraft development this hurt Airbus arguably through to the A350XWB.
  • They got the fuselage cross section wrong. Guy Norris' book has a great section on this, as well as diagrams of some of the options considered. Ovoid and circular 8+6Y, horizontal double bubble 12Y(!) and a "clover leaf" 7+9Y (exaggerated vertical double bubble). The problem seems to be that they had a passenger figure, then went with the most efficient cross section for that count, but didn't iterate when the constraints of the 80x80 box compromised the design elsewhere.
  • The production SNAFUs. If they hadn't happened they'd have delivered the freighter and the -900. I suspect they'd have only delivered 30 -F's by now, but the -900 would have occupied a nicer position on the casm/yield curve and I believe the airframe could have enjoyed something of a virtuous circle
Down with that sort of thing!
 
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:56 pm

On the same subject:
Airbus intends to reduce A380 output to six units a year from 2020 in a bid to sustain its flagship programme while keeping losses from the aircraft's production at a "digestible" level.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... ir-445983/
 
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enzo011
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:02 pm

bigjku wrote:
I am sorry but this is a big boy game. The most likely answer isn’t that anyone lied. It’s that the engine builders saw a relatively tiny market for what the A380 offered and wouldn’t commit billions to push forward. On the other hand they saw large opportunity on the 787, A350, A330NEO space and were quite willing to invest money for that.

For a huge variety of reasons beyond even volume of engines the economics of those programs likely looked very different to the OEM. The customer bases would be much broader making follow up revenue much more likely.

The fundamental issue for the A380 from day one has been the same. Not enough people want to buy it.

Why didn’t it get better engines? Because not enough people wanted to buy it.

Why hasn’t it been stretched? Because it enough people wanted to buy it.

Why hasn’t it gotten new engines? Because not enough people wanted to buy it.

They built the plane they wanted to build. Not what the markets wanted. Everything else seems like noise at this point.


Sure, but if they didn't pass on information to Airbus that in a few years time there could be better engines if they knew it then they were deliberately misleading them on what they could offer. I have no problem with the OEMs doing this, but don't pretend that if they did do this on purpose that it isn't lying. If engine technology improves 1% a year (a mention we see on here all the time), how did the 787 get an engine that is 10% better when it should be somewhere in the region of 7% better. Did all of the OEMs just find technology in those few months after giving Airbus the details of the engines they could supply to the A380?

Was there a deal with Boeing with the 787 to only supply this technology to the 787 when it was launched?

jayunited wrote:
Enzo011 go back and reread the article he is saying just that. Although he actually never utters those exact words the meaning is there he is partly blaming engine manufactures for the slow sales of the A380 and he probably has a point when he states Airbus was mislead. But what Leahy does not want to admit is the fact that Airbus misread the markets future needs, in my opinion Airbus was focus on a few factors when they green lit the A380 program those were airport congestion, limited slots are certain airports, the age of most 747's and finally the fact that Boeing's 744 sales had slowed and the only real replacement Boeing had for the 747-2/3/4s was the 772ER and the 77W which entered service in 2004.


I have read the article. He does not say the engines were the reason they didn't sell. He does say they launched the program 5 years too early (at least impled by the article that he said this without quoting him).

Leahy concedes the program was probably launched five years too soon for demand. The program should have been launched in 2005, he says in hindsight. It was also ill-timed and unlucky.


So yeah, lets all talk about Leahy blaming the engines for slow A380 sales when he does state they launched it too early in hindsight.

jayunited wrote:
par13del wrote:
jayunited wrote:
Was Boeing just that good at covering their steps and hiding their desire to expand the use of composite in aircraft like the 787 or where their signs that Airbus miss and could have used in their A380. How were they blindsided by the 787 perhaps it is a topic for another thread but it is a very interesting quote from Leahy non the less.

I thought the A380 has massive composite structures, if so what is he talking about?


He does not go into detail so I have no idea what he means when he stated Airbus was blindsided by the 787s and the use of composites. It is a interesting article I think everyone on this thread should read it.


I think he means they were blindsided by the advantages of composites and the engines used by the 787. Its not that the A380 should have been a composite frame, but the package of the 787 with the engines caught them out as they were told the A380 engines were the best you would get for 10 years.
 
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enzo011
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:09 pm

CHI87LG wrote:
Imagine if you worked for a company tasked with designing an engine for an airplane that will, by virtue of its size, sell fewer units over its lifespan.

You understand that you'll be asked to support these engines for their life and only a handful of operators will ever use them.

Are you going to advocate for pouring everything into the engine, in a sort of moonshot, to impress people with the incredible R&D you've done?

No.

You're going to just meet the specs, evaluate the costs and shop around for other projects to boost profits.



I think Leahy is bitter with GE. He obviously feels they don't provide Airbus with the same support they give Boeing and Airbus suffers as a result of this. You are correct that there is very little incentive for GE, RR or PW to give their best engines for the A380 as sales will not be stellar. But if the A380 was the only model Airbus would ever sell then its a great strategy. Seeing that Airbus is slowly catching Boeing in sales of widebody aircraft you should see attitudes change in this regard. The question is has it come too late for GE to repair their relationship with Airbus at this stage to get to a point where they would offer them the best they have according to Airbus specifications, instead of telling Airbus what they will give them.
 
JustSomeDood
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:18 pm

enzo011 wrote:
Sure, but if they didn't pass on information to Airbus that in a few years time there could be better engines if they knew it then they were deliberately misleading them on what they could offer. I have no problem with the OEMs doing this, but don't pretend that if they did do this on purpose that it isn't lying. If engine technology improves 1% a year (a mention we see on here all the time), how did the 787 get an engine that is 10% better when it should be somewhere in the region of 7% better. Did all of the OEMs just find technology in those few months after giving Airbus the details of the engines they could supply to the A380?

Was there a deal with Boeing with the 787 to only supply this technology to the 787 when it was launched?

[


Engine tech doesn't just improve "naturally", it takes sustained R&D for such improvements to materialise, naturally, GE/RR rightly project that they can afford to spend a lot more R&D for engines for 787s/A330s than A380s, simply because there'd much more engines sold (and more ancilliary revenue from maintenece) to amortize the R&D dollars over...
 
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par13del
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:34 pm

enzo011 wrote:
Sure, but if they didn't pass on information to Airbus that in a few years time there could be better engines if they knew it then they were deliberately misleading them on what they could offer. I have no problem with the OEMs doing this, but don't pretend that if they did do this on purpose that it isn't lying. If engine technology improves 1% a year (a mention we see on here all the time), how did the 787 get an engine that is 10% better when it should be somewhere in the region of 7% better. Did all of the OEMs just find technology in those few months after giving Airbus the details of the engines they could supply to the A380?

Was there a deal with Boeing with the 787 to only supply this technology to the 787 when it was launched?

So the fact that RR who powers the 787 and is the exclusive supplier on the A350 is supplying them with engines that some say are superior resulting in the A350 being a more capable frame than the 787 is just happenstance or payback?
One can start conspiracy theories on why the RR engines on the 787 is resulting in groundings while their engine on the A350 is fine.....

I think we should just accept that this is the Sales Man and not the technical expert and stop trying to validate his sales pitch, after all, this has been his life for more than a
decades, it is what he knows, lived and is very good at... the conspiracy is why they are not fighting harder to delay his retirement.
 
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Rookie87
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:37 pm

BaconButty wrote:
The late great Bill Shankly on Brian Clough: “Laddie, that man scored 200 goals in 270 matches – an incredible record – and he has won cup after cup as a manager. When he talks, pin back your ears. Come on guys, we know the A380 hasn't been a success. But now Leahy's retired we're getting bit by bit his perception of why. And we still get the same old keyboard warriors ignoring or ridiculing him, and spouting their simplistic crap. He may be wrong, on this point I suspect not, but at least accept he has an insight we don't.

@bigjku "The fundamental issue for the A380 from day one has been the same. Not enough people want to buy it." - Of course, but not really helpful. And inverting cause and effect isn't either. Why didn't people want to buy it? There's a tendency on here, particularly from the more ... insular kind of American, to anthropomorphise these corporations, and talk about national pride etc. The reality is, these were smart people. It would be great to analyse where things went wrong sensibly, but A.Net isn't the place to do it unfortunately. I personally think 3 things

  • Leahy is correct in saying that Airbus didn't set the agenda at Engine manufacturers, but I feel it was an inevitable part of Airbus not being a peer of Boeings until around the turn of the century. Given the inherent lag in aircraft development this hurt Airbus arguably through to the A350XWB.
  • They got the fuselage cross section wrong. Guy Norris' book has a great section on this, as well as diagrams of some of the options considered. Ovoid and circular 8+6Y, horizontal double bubble 12Y(!) and a "clover leaf" 7+9Y (exaggerated vertical double bubble). The problem seems to be that they had a passenger figure, then went with the most efficient cross section for that count, but didn't iterate when the constraints of the 80x80 box compromised the design elsewhere.
  • The production SNAFUs. If they hadn't happened they'd have delivered the freighter and the -900. I suspect they'd have only delivered 30 -F's by now, but the -900 would have occupied a nicer position on the casm/yield curve and I believe the airframe could have enjoyed something of a virtuous circle


I love how you broke this down! You reminded me about reading over how Airbus had to make corrections so that the A380 would fit within those parameters and how much of a headache it was for airports; almost as if Airbus hadn’t gone over those issues at all.
The article gives me the impression that the A380 project was rushed. An amazing feat of technology, the whale.
If the engines were indeed better at say a 10% lower fuel burn, how different of an aircraft would it be? (Compared to current missions)
 
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Rookie87
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:41 pm

par13del wrote:
enzo011 wrote:
Sure, but if they didn't pass on information to Airbus that in a few years time there could be better engines if they knew it then they were deliberately misleading them on what they could offer. I have no problem with the OEMs doing this, but don't pretend that if they did do this on purpose that it isn't lying. If engine technology improves 1% a year (a mention we see on here all the time), how did the 787 get an engine that is 10% better when it should be somewhere in the region of 7% better. Did all of the OEMs just find technology in those few months after giving Airbus the details of the engines they could supply to the A380?

Was there a deal with Boeing with the 787 to only supply this technology to the 787 when it was launched?

So the fact that RR who powers the 787 and is the exclusive supplier on the A350 is supplying them with engines that some say are superior resulting in the A350 being a more capable frame than the 787 is just happenstance or payback?
One can start conspiracy theories on why the RR engines on the 787 is resulting in groundings while their engine on the A350 is fine.....

I think we should just accept that this is the Sales Man and not the technical expert and stop trying to validate his sales pitch, after all, this has been his life for more than a
decades, it is what he knows, lived and is very good at... the conspiracy is why they are not fighting harder to delay his retirement.


I’m more surprised that he’s not for the re-engine route. On one hand he wishes the A380 had engines with 10% better fuel burn, but on the other, he’d rather the improvements be made from aircraft interiors ... I don’t understand
 
mjoelnir
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:45 pm

JustSomeDood wrote:
enzo011 wrote:
Sure, but if they didn't pass on information to Airbus that in a few years time there could be better engines if they knew it then they were deliberately misleading them on what they could offer. I have no problem with the OEMs doing this, but don't pretend that if they did do this on purpose that it isn't lying. If engine technology improves 1% a year (a mention we see on here all the time), how did the 787 get an engine that is 10% better when it should be somewhere in the region of 7% better. Did all of the OEMs just find technology in those few months after giving Airbus the details of the engines they could supply to the A380?

Was there a deal with Boeing with the 787 to only supply this technology to the 787 when it was launched?

[


Engine tech doesn't just improve "naturally", it takes sustained R&D for such improvements to materialise, naturally, GE/RR rightly project that they can afford to spend a lot more R&D for engines for 787s/A330s than A380s, simply because there'd much more engines sold (and more ancilliary revenue from maintenece) to amortize the R&D dollars over...


Let us now see. Your argument is that GE could not provide a slightly bigger GEnx for the A380, than for the 787, because of expected sales numbers for the A380, but how was it than possible to provide a down scaled version of the GEnx for the 747-8 for still fewer sales?
Last edited by mjoelnir on Fri Feb 16, 2018 4:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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par13del
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:47 pm

Boeing offered GE exclusivity on the 777W to push them into being a risk sharing partner, would some such have been considered for the initial A380 or even now for the NEO option?
RR kicked EA to the curb at the largest operator by offering up PIP's which EA were not willing to invest in, now that same operator is attempting to play off RR against EA again, If either one had exclusivity this would not be a consideration.
 
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TheRedBaron
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:53 pm

Bricktop wrote:
I hope JL writes a book. It would be epic!



It will be titled: "How I sold a 400 airplanes, nobody needed, nobody wanted, that are bad business case and to top it off with terrible engines"

JL is a hero... and Anet is the place where A380 dreams come to die, no matter what.

The main reason it did not sell as predicted has to do more with the market and airlines than PAX demand, fuel is still cheap, slots are available, traffic congestion is still manageable and ticket prices are still quite cheap.... the moment some or all of those thing change....the A380 will look better, I for one, think MEX alone could see 3 or 4 A380 flights daily ...

I wonder how many Aneters will jump out the window when Airbus announces the A380Plus in less than 6 years...

Best Regards
TRB
The best seat in a Plane is the Jumpseat.
 
tommy1808
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:56 pm

SFOtoORD wrote:
Sounds like sour grapes..


Sounds like a Boeing/GE Cartel .....

Withholding PIPs from the A320s CFMs, withholding latest Engine roadmaps......

best regards
Thomas
This Singature is a safe space......
 
peterinlisbon
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 4:01 pm

There's nothing stopping them putting new engines on the A380 if they think there's a market for it.
 
JustSomeDood
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 4:26 pm

TheRedBaron wrote:
Bricktop wrote:
I hope JL writes a book. It would be epic!



It will be titled: "How I sold a 400 airplanes, nobody needed, nobody wanted, that are bad business case and to top it off with terrible engines"

JL is a hero... and Anet is the place where A380 dreams come to die, no matter what.

The main reason it did not sell as predicted has to do more with the market and airlines than PAX demand, fuel is still cheap, slots are available, traffic congestion is still manageable and ticket prices are still quite cheap.... the moment some or all of those thing change....the A380 will look better, I for one, think MEX alone could see 3 or 4 A380 flights daily ...

I wonder how many Aneters will jump out the window when Airbus announces the A380Plus in less than 6 years...

Best Regards
TRB


Seeing as he was the guy who fought hard for the A380 concept to be made in the first place with those erroneous projections, the more correct title should be "How I convinced a multinational, goverment-backed Aircraft Conglomerate to dump $10+Billion on a bad business case."

Not counting the obvious bogus orders (QF + VA + Amedeo + Accord + Unidentified), total orders for the A380 is ~310 even after counting the 16 options EK has. That's nearly 11 years after EIS. It's gonna take better CASM than an A380 with new engines for non-ME3 Airlines to give a damn en masse when it's way easier and safer to fit 400+ seats in 77Ws and upcoming 779s...
 
2175301
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 4:29 pm

If Airbus was unaware of the kind of engine technology being developed for future engines when they were designing the A380... That's on Airbus. The general information was known (The 787 and other engines did not just appear out of the blue one day - they had been in development for years).

If you wanted engines using those capabilities you would have to delay your program until after they became available and were proven in service for their initial size offering. If you wanted your program to move forward now, then you have to accept current technology. That is a decision that every airline manufacturer makes when developing a new model. There is nothing new about the process.

There is also something to be said about accepting responsibilities of the decisions you made at the time. I've oft heard from various people that "in hindsight it was not the best decision; but, it was the decision we made at the time based on what we knew and estimated then." Once in a while followed by: "We really blew it because...." Also, perhaps followed by something like: "we have changed out decision making process to include more factors and identify risks better."

Have a great day,
 
cledaybuck
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 4:31 pm

mjoelnir wrote:
JustSomeDood wrote:
enzo011 wrote:
Sure, but if they didn't pass on information to Airbus that in a few years time there could be better engines if they knew it then they were deliberately misleading them on what they could offer. I have no problem with the OEMs doing this, but don't pretend that if they did do this on purpose that it isn't lying. If engine technology improves 1% a year (a mention we see on here all the time), how did the 787 get an engine that is 10% better when it should be somewhere in the region of 7% better. Did all of the OEMs just find technology in those few months after giving Airbus the details of the engines they could supply to the A380?

Was there a deal with Boeing with the 787 to only supply this technology to the 787 when it was launched?

[


Engine tech doesn't just improve "naturally", it takes sustained R&D for such improvements to materialise, naturally, GE/RR rightly project that they can afford to spend a lot more R&D for engines for 787s/A330s than A380s, simply because there'd much more engines sold (and more ancilliary revenue from maintenece) to amortize the R&D dollars over...


Let us now see. Your argument is that GE could not provide a slightly bigger GEnx for the A380, than for the 787, because of expected sales numbers for the A380, but how was it than possible to provide a down scaled version of the GEnx for the 747-8 for still fewer sales?
Because GE had already started developing that engine for the original A350 before Airbus screwed them with the redesign.
As we celebrate mediocrity, all the boys upstairs want to see, how much you'll pay for what you used to get for free.
 
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par13del
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 4:34 pm

tommy1808 wrote:
Sounds like a Boeing/GE Cartel .....

Withholding PIPs from the A320s CFMs, withholding latest Engine roadmaps......

best regards
Thomas

So the CFM's on the A320 have a European component, so must be another Arnold at work.

Regardless, Airbus is selling modern A320 a/c while Boeing is selling obsolete 737 of the 60+ year vintage, since Airbus has the larger share of the narrow body market and is growing it every day that Boeing and GE have no competitor to the A321, why exactly should anyone care about a Boeing / GE cartel or why should it make a difference?
 
Tedd
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 4:36 pm

I believe the A380 got two pretty good engines as it turned out, I also think he should be grateful for the fact.
To have a choice of engine was a big plus for the airlines too. Both GP 7200 & Trent 900 have been reliable
& done millions of hours in service, with no icing, or blade coating problems which have plagued the later
developed engines. Sure both engines could have been more efficient, but overall it wouldn`t have impacted
on sales if they`d waited 3yrs IMHO.
 
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par13del
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 4:38 pm

cledaybuck wrote:
Because GE had already started developing that engine for the original A350 before Airbus screwed them with the redesign.

.....and mandated that they invest additional funds to power all other variants of the a/c to the detriment of their existing investment in the 777W, 748-i.
Note that once the A350 was deployed there was euphoria that it has now rendered the 777W obsolete, I guess the consolation would have been that GE would have gotten something back versus the nothing that they now have.
 
mjoelnir
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 4:39 pm

cledaybuck wrote:
mjoelnir wrote:
JustSomeDood wrote:

Engine tech doesn't just improve "naturally", it takes sustained R&D for such improvements to materialise, naturally, GE/RR rightly project that they can afford to spend a lot more R&D for engines for 787s/A330s than A380s, simply because there'd much more engines sold (and more ancilliary revenue from maintenece) to amortize the R&D dollars over...


Let us now see. Your argument is that GE could not provide a slightly bigger GEnx for the A380, than for the 787, because of expected sales numbers for the A380, but how was it than possible to provide a down scaled version of the GEnx for the 747-8 for still fewer sales?
Because GE had already started developing that engine for the original A350 before Airbus screwed them with the redesign.


Are you sure you are in the right time frame?
 
cledaybuck
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 4:48 pm

par13del wrote:
tommy1808 wrote:
Sounds like a Boeing/GE Cartel .....

Withholding PIPs from the A320s CFMs, withholding latest Engine roadmaps......

best regards
Thomas

So the CFM's on the A320 have a European component, so must be another Arnold at work.

Regardless, Airbus is selling modern A320 a/c while Boeing is selling obsolete 737 of the 60+ year vintage, since Airbus has the larger share of the narrow body market and is growing it every day that Boeing and GE have no competitor to the A321, why exactly should anyone care about a Boeing / GE cartel or why should it make a difference?
A French component none the less!

It is a strange cartel indeed with RR on Boeing's best selling widebody and CFM on Airbus's highest volume plane. Not to mention on the A380 as part of EA.
As we celebrate mediocrity, all the boys upstairs want to see, how much you'll pay for what you used to get for free.
 
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QuarkFly
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 4:56 pm

KarelXWB wrote:
The engine OEMs assured Airbus, Leahy said, that the A380 engines would be state of the art for the next 10 years.

“Then, within three years, these guys are there with Boeing with the 787 with game-changing engine technology and 10% lower fuel burn than the last generation engines,” Leahy says.

“You stand around and say, these guys knew what they had. They were working on it. They knew it was a big step. They kept their mouths shut and even intentionally misled us with the 380 technology, because why wouldn’t you have just wait two or three years with the 380 to get the new generation engines if you thought there was a new generation engine on the horizon?technology at that time.
.


No, No, No...Leahy is covering his own a**ss here. He knows that's not the way major aviation investments work. Is Airbus so stupid that they did not know about new engine developments at their own suppliers...GE, RR and PW? No way!

The A380 was officially launched around 2000 and went into service about 2007 after at least a year delay...The 787 with T1000 and GEnX was launched in 2004 after the sonic-cruiser dead-end -- and was originally scheduled for a completely unrealistic 2008 first delivery. Not only was the 787 not ready, the engines were definitely not ready either....

...The first 787 was finally delivered in late 2011, four years after the first A380 delivery and the engines still had issues, required PiP's and then still needed upgrades...GEnX had high altitude icing problems, and shaft coating problems causing engines to explode... and even today RR is struggling with turbine blade metallurgy...replacing engines for hundreds of 787 T1000 frames.

So imagine if this technology from GE, RR -- was introduced with the A380 a few years earlier...it would have been a disaster for the A380. Airbus would have been foolish NOT to go with existing technology -- well regarded RR Trent technology and GE/PW...they got some GE90 technology.

The A380 is not struggling in the marketplace because of engines...customers balked at the 500+ passenger product. Leahy knows that and is trying to shift blame !!
Always take the Red Eye if possible
 
Bald1983
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 4:59 pm

KarelXWB wrote:
Another interesting interview with retiring John Leahy. This time he addresses the A380 engine technology:

“We brought out and launched the 380 in 2000. We’re out there with the 380 and GE and Pratt & Whitney and Rolls-Royce are assuring us there is nothing on the horizon. This is best level of engine technology you can get.”

The engine OEMs assured Airbus, Leahy said, that the A380 engines would be state of the art for the next 10 years.

“Then, within three years, these guys are there with Boeing with the 787 with game-changing engine technology and 10% lower fuel burn than the last generation engines,” Leahy says.

“You stand around and say, these guys knew what they had. They were working on it. They knew it was a big step. They kept their mouths shut and even intentionally misled us with the 380 technology, because why wouldn’t you have just wait two or three years with the 380 to get the new generation engines if you thought there was a new generation engine on the horizon?

“They wanted to sell their own generation engines. None of our engineers knew it. None of our product development people were aware of it. That was a real strategic mistake. I’d love to have an A380 now with 10% lower fuel burn.


Article
https://leehamnews.com/2018/02/16/leahy ... 80-future/

As lightsaber once pointed it, the current A380 engines were basically "frankensteined" from existing technology at that time.


Translation: Airbus screwed up building the A-380 and we need to find somewhere to cast blame. There could very well be the situation where all of the manufacturers conspired to cheat Airbus. However, it is really an excuse. Airbus bet on mega-hub to mega-hub. Boeing went the other way with the 787. For that matter Airbus did as well with the A-350. Sounds like Leahy is resigned to the demise of the A-380.
 
cledaybuck
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 5:00 pm

mjoelnir wrote:
cledaybuck wrote:
mjoelnir wrote:

Let us now see. Your argument is that GE could not provide a slightly bigger GEnx for the A380, than for the 787, because of expected sales numbers for the A380, but how was it than possible to provide a down scaled version of the GEnx for the 747-8 for still fewer sales?
Because GE had already started developing that engine for the original A350 before Airbus screwed them with the redesign.


Are you sure you are in the right time frame?
Pretty sure. Am I missing something?

P.S. I am not trying to say that GE is on the 748 because Airbus screwed them by redesigning the A350. I am just saying that GE was already developing a bleed air version of the GenEx for the A350, which made it easier to put on the 748.
As we celebrate mediocrity, all the boys upstairs want to see, how much you'll pay for what you used to get for free.
 
subramak1
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 5:01 pm

If Airbus can sustain the A 380 production line for another 10 years, it would be interesting to see the demand intra Asia alone and also I would be surprised if it did not get orders from NA in that time frame

Subu
 
Bald1983
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 5:03 pm

enzo011 wrote:
fcogafa wrote:
Not my fault the A380 didn't sell better, it was the engine manufacturers fault, it's not fair....



I must have missed him saying that. Can you point to him saying that is the reason it didn't sell? I think he is just voicing his disappointment that the engine OEMs told him there is no new engine technology on the horizon when this was patently false.


Of course he is explaining his take on why the plane did nto sell. It was not that fuel efficient because, in his view, there was a conspiracy in engine manufactures. If all the airlines were fighting each other to get to the front of the line in A-380 orders, do you really think Airbus would care about the engines?
 
Bald1983
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Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 5:09 pm

jayunited wrote:
enzo011 wrote:
fcogafa wrote:
Not my fault the A380 didn't sell better, it was the engine manufacturers fault, it's not fair....



I must have missed him saying that. Can you point to him saying that is the reason it didn't sell? I think he is just voicing his disappointment that the engine OEMs told him there is no new engine technology on the horizon when this was patently false.


Enzo011 go back and reread the article he is saying just that. Although he actually never utters those exact words the meaning is there he is partly blaming engine manufactures for the slow sales of the A380 and he probably has a point when he states Airbus was mislead. But what Leahy does not want to admit is the fact that Airbus misread the markets future needs, in my opinion Airbus was focus on a few factors when they green lit the A380 program those were airport congestion, limited slots are certain airports, the age of most 747's and finally the fact that Boeing's 744 sales had slowed and the only real replacement Boeing had for the 747-2/3/4s was the 772ER and the 77W which entered service in 2004. In my opinion Airbus thought Boeing dropped the ball and was banking on most 747 operators ordering the A380 as their current 747-2/3/4s came up for retirement. But the reality was Boeings 77W became the replacement for a lot of 747s, the US3 didn't order a single A380 stating the product doesn't fit their current system of where customers prefer frequency. Airbus didn't secure a single order from JL, or NH both of which had a large 747 fleet at the time instead they both oder the 77W, CX which also had a very large 747 fleet as well chose the 77W, Chinese airlines which were expected to need a ton of VLAs only order a handful of A380s, India another country which was forecasted at the time to see a boom in demand for air travel still has no airline with a single A380. Then last but not least was Europe a region that had plenty of airlines with 747s in their fleet a lot of congestion and the famously slot controlled LHR. Airbus probably thought Europe would be ripe for the picking, the A380 would be the natural replacement for many of those 747s European airlines had in their fleet. While some European Airlines have the A380 in service their fleets are extremely small when compared to the size of their 747 fleets back in 2000. Instead of going bigger many airlines around the world have gone smaller and instead have chosen to cram more seats into smaller aircraft like the 77W, 772ER, 787-8/9, A330, A350.

Could the next generation engine technology driven more A380 sales that is difficult to answer because even back in 2000 many airlines were starting to use 772ERs and if I'm not mistaken A332s on routes that for decades had been flown utilizing 3 and or 4 engine aircraft. I think Airbus correctly forecasted a rise in demand for air travel I just don't think they envision that rise would be on twins and not quads like their A380.

Not to high jack the thread but another part of this article that stood out to me was Leahy's quote about the 787.

"If there was a strategic mistake, it was we were blindsided when they brought out the 787, with the composite fuselage and the engine technology. That’s part of the problem with the 380,”
https://leehamnews.com/2018/02/16/leahy ... 80-future/

Was Boeing just that good at covering their steps and hiding their desire to expand the use of composite in aircraft like the 787 or where their signs that Airbus miss and could have used in their A380. How were they blindsided by the 787 perhaps it is a topic for another thread but it is a very interesting quote from Leahy non the less.


Good points. I believe one was left out. Status. Airbus wanted a plane to surpass the 747 as the largest passenger plane. They achieved that status but they did so when medium size twins and larger twins took over the market. But for Emirates, the plane would be dean already.
 
MaverickM11
Posts: 17570
Joined: Thu Apr 06, 2000 1:59 pm

Re: Leahy: A380 could have had better engine technology

Fri Feb 16, 2018 5:17 pm

Still would have been too big to fill
E pur si muove -Galileo

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