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JoeCanuck
Posts: 4486
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 4:35 am

Newbiepilot wrote:
rheinwaldner wrote:
Newbiepilot wrote:
It also could be because of the business case. I don’t think we know.

Maybe my memory fools me, but I could bet that you at least wrote a dozen posts in which you seemed to know (why the A320++ was shelved). And that each time you mentioned other reasons than the business case.


Here isn’t a quote from the A320plus being shelved

PARIS (Reuters) - Airbus has shelved advanced studies aimed at improving its A320neo jet family, designed in part to fend off a mid-market plane that Boeing hopes to build, two people familiar with the matter said.

The surprise decision to back away from the proposed "A320neo-plus" and "A321neo-plus," which would lengthen and modernize both models, comes as Airbus (AIR.PA) continues to face problems in increasing output for the current versions.

"The ramp-up is not going as well as hoped," a person with knowledge of the supply chain said. Another said Airbus had declared industrial matters top priority amid engine shortages, calling off plans to show the A320neo-plus design to airlines.


https://finance.yahoo.com/news/exclusiv ... 32015.html

Was it because production issues are so bad they didn’t have the resources to work in the A320plus? Was it because all the slots are full so a new derivative wouldn’t have any near term slots to sell? Was it because of lack of engines? Was it because the business case and profitability projects were weak? I don’t have a crystal ball or pretend to know why. I can only guess based on quotes and articles.


I think we're once again being caught up in semantics. While shelved CAN mean cancelled, it doesn't always. Both of these makers love to play with word tricks. They don't like being embarrassed and nobody wants another Sonic Cruiser. There are, literally, billions of dollars at stake and nobody is going to publicly commit to anything unless they have to.

Secrets are money. If they aren't using absolutes like 'cancelled', then they probably aren't cancelled.

Regardless, one thing I know for sure is that none of us knows what is really happening behind Airbus's and Boeing's closed doors.
What the...?
 
c933103
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 5:00 am

BaconButty wrote:
Just reading this thread, and there's some utterly mad extrapolations from the seeming fact that the program has been shelved. The reality is, it was always going to be the case:
  • The long pole in the tent for this project will be engine availability - Airbus will not want to be a half generation behind in this respect
  • If Airbus opts to respond to an MOM launch with an A321 revision, that project will have shorter lead times than the clean sheet
  • The studies need to be done in advance - if an A321 derivative is not a viable competitor they may need to move with their own clean sheet

So say B. launches in 2019 with EIS in 2026 (arbitrary dates - but a now seemingly standard 7 year development period). A. will also be looking at a similar timeframe for EIS - dictated by engine availability - but may only require 3-5 years from launch to bring to market (depending what they do). So of course it will be shelved.

On the other hand, the outcome of the study may have been that no re-engined and rewinged A321 would be competitive in that space. But none of us know right now.

The expectation is that even if Airbus do a plus and then a plus plus it would still be faster than NMA EIS
JoeCanuck wrote:
Newbiepilot wrote:
rheinwaldner wrote:
Maybe my memory fools me, but I could bet that you at least wrote a dozen posts in which you seemed to know (why the A320++ was shelved). And that each time you mentioned other reasons than the business case.


Here isn’t a quote from the A320plus being shelved

PARIS (Reuters) - Airbus has shelved advanced studies aimed at improving its A320neo jet family, designed in part to fend off a mid-market plane that Boeing hopes to build, two people familiar with the matter said.

The surprise decision to back away from the proposed "A320neo-plus" and "A321neo-plus," which would lengthen and modernize both models, comes as Airbus (AIR.PA) continues to face problems in increasing output for the current versions.

"The ramp-up is not going as well as hoped," a person with knowledge of the supply chain said. Another said Airbus had declared industrial matters top priority amid engine shortages, calling off plans to show the A320neo-plus design to airlines.


https://finance.yahoo.com/news/exclusiv ... 32015.html

Was it because production issues are so bad they didn’t have the resources to work in the A320plus? Was it because all the slots are full so a new derivative wouldn’t have any near term slots to sell? Was it because of lack of engines? Was it because the business case and profitability projects were weak? I don’t have a crystal ball or pretend to know why. I can only guess based on quotes and articles.


I think we're once again being caught up in semantics. While shelved CAN mean cancelled, it doesn't always. Both of these makers love to play with word tricks. They don't like being embarrassed and nobody wants another Sonic Cruiser. There are, literally, billions of dollars at stake and nobody is going to publicly commit to anything unless they have to.

Secrets are money. If they aren't using absolutes like 'cancelled', then they probably aren't cancelled.

Regardless, one thing I know for sure is that none of us knows what is really happening behind Airbus's and Boeing's closed doors.

I don't think the distinction between shelved/cancelled mean a lot in this context. Now they're going to work on XLR, it's most likely that they will finish XLR (And maybe do others thing in the mean time like upgrade production lines), and NMA will most definitely launch NMA before XLR EIS. At the time they can further determine what NMA will be like, what are the narket reception to a 321 will increased range or a larger narrowbody, how competitive will neo plus/plus plus are, and even future market situation/forecast at the time, and then further decide their strategy. They can reuse what they shelved now for work at that time but there will be no need for them to be bound by these current studies
 
rheinwaldner
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 5:02 am

Newbiepilot wrote:
...

Now you made another post that does notshow, that the A320 studies are shelved because of a questionable business plan. In you quote there are even two (other) reasons mentioned. It requires a tremendous amount of creative interpretation, to read "the A320++ business case is not water proof" from your own quotes....
Many things are difficult, all things are possible!
 
strfyr51
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Re: Airbus A321XLR?

Tue Jun 26, 2018 5:07 am

c933103 wrote:
A380MSN004 wrote:
Would be interesting to know what range is XLR?
A 4th ACT would be doable on the existent A321LR but with the bulk load heavily loaded and some restriction on High dimension luggages = lot of headackes and bags restrictions on operations just to get an extra 400-500nm extra range from the LR range

If it have a larger wing then it would have both more efficiency and more fuel capacity available that can fly further.

it would require a larger and deeper wing at the wing root carrying extra ACT's is not the answee but I don't believe Airbus is going to re-design the wing.
 
c933103
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Re: Airbus A321XLR?

Tue Jun 26, 2018 6:13 am

strfyr51 wrote:
c933103 wrote:
A380MSN004 wrote:
Would be interesting to know what range is XLR?
A 4th ACT would be doable on the existent A321LR but with the bulk load heavily loaded and some restriction on High dimension luggages = lot of headackes and bags restrictions on operations just to get an extra 400-500nm extra range from the LR range

If it have a larger wing then it would have both more efficiency and more fuel capacity available that can fly further.

it would require a larger and deeper wing at the wing root carrying extra ACT's is not the answee but I don't believe Airbus is going to re-design the wing.

As clarified in other posts, redesigned wing will be for those pluses but not XLR
 
WIederling
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 6:33 am

seahawk wrote:
And the is proven by your fake power point slide?

Humor : it is a difficult concept.
Murphy is an optimist
 
JoergAtADN
Posts: 51
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 6:40 am

How much weight would a fixed tank save over an ACT of the same volume?

Does anybody have data about the A321LR ACT empty weights? I found only old estimated values from Leeham (400kg+200kg for fixtures).

Are there any photos of the A321LR ACTs available?
 
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BaconButty
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 9:33 am

c933103 wrote:
The expectation is that even if Airbus do a plus and then a plus plus it would still be faster than NMA EIS


Who expects that? The pacing item will be engine availability - and that will (give or take) dictate a similar EIS for NMA and the Airbus response, if they happen. Sure, I expect any A321 derivative to be faster to market from formal launch, but that's my point. It will be launched later and therefore was always going to be shelved, even if the study yielded positive results.
Down with that sort of thing!
 
c933103
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 10:43 am

BaconButty wrote:
c933103 wrote:
The expectation is that even if Airbus do a plus and then a plus plus it would still be faster than NMA EIS


Who expects that? The pacing item will be engine availability - and that will (give or take) dictate a similar EIS for NMA and the Airbus response, if they happen. Sure, I expect any A321 derivative to be faster to market from formal launch, but that's my point. It will be launched later and therefore was always going to be shelved, even if the study yielded positive results.

I don't think re-engine is in any of the airbus's plan although that doesn't preclude their choice of doing it in the future
 
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Revelation
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 11:07 am

c933103 wrote:
I don't think the distinction between shelved/cancelled mean a lot in this context. Now they're going to work on XLR, it's most likely that they will finish XLR (And maybe do others thing in the mean time like upgrade production lines), and NMA will most definitely launch NMA before XLR EIS. At the time they can further determine what NMA will be like, what are the narket reception to a 321 will increased range or a larger narrowbody, how competitive will neo plus/plus plus are, and even future market situation/forecast at the time, and then further decide their strategy. They can reuse what they shelved now for work at that time but there will be no need for them to be bound by these current studies

Since we thrive on the discussion of semantics here, I think "studying" is different than "going to work on".
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Wake now, discover that you are the song that the morning brings
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bigjku
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 11:25 am

Revelation wrote:
c933103 wrote:
I don't think the distinction between shelved/cancelled mean a lot in this context. Now they're going to work on XLR, it's most likely that they will finish XLR (And maybe do others thing in the mean time like upgrade production lines), and NMA will most definitely launch NMA before XLR EIS. At the time they can further determine what NMA will be like, what are the narket reception to a 321 will increased range or a larger narrowbody, how competitive will neo plus/plus plus are, and even future market situation/forecast at the time, and then further decide their strategy. They can reuse what they shelved now for work at that time but there will be no need for them to be bound by these current studies

Since we thrive on the discussion of semantics here, I think "studying" is different than "going to work on".


Also is is not equally likely that Airbus looked at the other options and decided a modest update is the only real way forward rather than investing several billion in an old design about to be challenged at the top end by an all new airplane? The plus plus is not a minor commitment after all. At some point the A320 will die. Airbus can’t get too deep into revamping it in my view. They might get caught like they did on the A330.
 
StTim
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 11:31 am

bigjku wrote:
At some point the A320 will die.



I have been reading the same about the 737 for almost as long as I can remember.
 
c933103
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 11:45 am

Revelation wrote:
c933103 wrote:
I don't think the distinction between shelved/cancelled mean a lot in this context. Now they're going to work on XLR, it's most likely that they will finish XLR (And maybe do others thing in the mean time like upgrade production lines), and NMA will most definitely launch NMA before XLR EIS. At the time they can further determine what NMA will be like, what are the narket reception to a 321 will increased range or a larger narrowbody, how competitive will neo plus/plus plus are, and even future market situation/forecast at the time, and then further decide their strategy. They can reuse what they shelved now for work at that time but there will be no need for them to be bound by these current studies

Since we thrive on the discussion of semantics here, I think "studying" is different than "going to work on".

In the field of aircraft design, as long as you're still on drawing board instead of cutting metals, you can still say it's just studying? Or maybe even if you have already started cutting metals to make models and mock up and that could still be count as part of the study
bigjku wrote:
Also is is not equally likely that Airbus looked at the other options and decided a modest update is the only real way forward rather than investing several billion in an old design about to be challenged at the top end by an all new airplane? The plus plus is not a minor commitment after all. At some point the A320 will die. Airbus can’t get too deep into revamping it in my view. They might get caught like they did on the A330.

What you proposed is just one of the many possibilities. It could also be that Airbus realized they don't need many serious investment to defend their territory from a twin aisles aircraft
As for Airbus can't get too deep into it, Boeing did the 737 NG too
 
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keesje
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 11:56 am

Apart from the engines the A320 has gone through only evolutionairy small improvements / upgrades. Even the NEO is basically about new engines.

A serious MidLifeUpgrade could theoratically be part of the family's lifecycle. It would include more radical changes that significant improve efffectivety / costs but would decrease commanlity too. I'm thinking new materials, new tail, wing, cockpitredesign, systemarchitecture etc. Each seperately might not be worthwhile, but if you do them all/many significant improvement might result. But you pay a price in terms of time, commonality and upfront investment.
"Never mistake motion for action." Ernest Hemingway
 
mjoelnir
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 12:11 pm

bigjku wrote:
Revelation wrote:
c933103 wrote:
I don't think the distinction between shelved/cancelled mean a lot in this context. Now they're going to work on XLR, it's most likely that they will finish XLR (And maybe do others thing in the mean time like upgrade production lines), and NMA will most definitely launch NMA before XLR EIS. At the time they can further determine what NMA will be like, what are the narket reception to a 321 will increased range or a larger narrowbody, how competitive will neo plus/plus plus are, and even future market situation/forecast at the time, and then further decide their strategy. They can reuse what they shelved now for work at that time but there will be no need for them to be bound by these current studies

Since we thrive on the discussion of semantics here, I think "studying" is different than "going to work on".


Also is is not equally likely that Airbus looked at the other options and decided a modest update is the only real way forward rather than investing several billion in an old design about to be challenged at the top end by an all new airplane? The plus plus is not a minor commitment after all. At some point the A320 will die. Airbus can’t get too deep into revamping it in my view. They might get caught like they did on the A330.


Or Airbus just took a deep look at the current order book and counted undelivered frames. 6,177 A320 family frames are undelivered on order. It is perhaps more important to move production rates fast to 70 a month. Keeping major upgrades for a time when orders are needed.
 
Oykie
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 12:13 pm

keesje wrote:
Apart from the engines the A320 has gone through only evolutionairy small improvements / upgrades. Even the NEO is basically about new engines.

A serious MidLifeUpgrade could theoratically be part of the family's lifecycle. It would include more radical changes that significant improve efffectivety / costs but would decrease commanlity too. I'm thinking new materials, new tail, wing, cockpitredesign, systemarchitecture etc. Each seperately might not be worthwhile, but if you do them all/many significant improvement might result. But you pay a price in terms of time, commonality and upfront investment.


A serious MidLifeUpgrade could also incorporate systems for the CSeries.
Dream no small dream; it lacks magic. Dream large, then go make that dream real - Donald Douglas
 
JoergAtADN
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 1:02 pm

Oykie wrote:
A serious MidLifeUpgrade could also incorporate systems for the CSeries.


Systems seems unkiley to me, because of comodity. But manufacturing processes make sense. Bombardier has a very cost efficient manufacturing process for CFRP wings, without need for expensive autoclaves. Unfortunateley the wing plants of both companies are located in Britian and are affected by the Brexit.

Maybe we will see a new wing plant in Bremen or Hamburg, which produces C-Series and A321++ wings using Bombardier technology.
 
Oykie
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 1:13 pm

JoergAtADN wrote:
Oykie wrote:
A serious MidLifeUpgrade could also incorporate systems for the CSeries.


Systems seems unkiley to me, because of comodity. But manufacturing processes make sense. Bombardier has a very cost efficient manufacturing process for CFRP wings, without need for expensive autoclaves. Unfortunateley the wing plants of both companies are located in Britian and are affected by the Brexit.

Maybe we will see a new wing plant in Bremen or Hamburg, which produces C-Series and A321++ wings using Bombardier technology.


In the event of hard brexit that seems plausible, and I believe one option being considered. Of course the highly skilled engineers would need to move.

More cockpit commonality and some systems could be nice. The CSeries is much more modern
Dream no small dream; it lacks magic. Dream large, then go make that dream real - Donald Douglas
 
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Revelation
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 1:37 pm

c933103 wrote:
In the field of aircraft design, as long as you're still on drawing board instead of cutting metals, you can still say it's just studying? Or maybe even if you have already started cutting metals to make models and mock up and that could still be count as part of the study

It's a good question, and as an outsider it's hard to draw the line, but I think most techies know the difference between a study (trying to understand trade-offs and gathering data to make the big decisions about feasibility) versus a few rounds of more detailed design then prototype construction (virtual or physical) and then manufacturing.

mjoelnir wrote:
Or Airbus just took a deep look at the current order book and counted undelivered frames. 6,177 A320 family frames are undelivered on order. It is perhaps more important to move production rates fast to 70 a month. Keeping major upgrades for a time when orders are needed.

There's a lot to be said for converting that backlog to cash as efficiently as possible.
Wake up to find out that you are the eyes of the world
The heart has it's beaches, it's homeland and thoughts of it's own
Wake now, discover that you are the song that the morning brings
The heart has it's seasons, it's evenings and songs of it's own
 
bigjku
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 1:43 pm

Oykie wrote:
JoergAtADN wrote:
Oykie wrote:
A serious MidLifeUpgrade could also incorporate systems for the CSeries.


Systems seems unkiley to me, because of comodity. But manufacturing processes make sense. Bombardier has a very cost efficient manufacturing process for CFRP wings, without need for expensive autoclaves. Unfortunateley the wing plants of both companies are located in Britian and are affected by the Brexit.

Maybe we will see a new wing plant in Bremen or Hamburg, which produces C-Series and A321++ wings using Bombardier technology.


In the event of hard brexit that seems plausible, and I believe one option being considered. Of course the highly skilled engineers would need to move.

More cockpit commonality and some systems could be nice. The CSeries is much more modern


All of these thoughts seem strange to me.

First Airbus seems highly unlikely to abandon cockpit commonality for a system that likely doesn’t even use the same flight control rules as their planes. One of their big selling points is the commonality up the chain of aircraft. The A350 is a much more likely and sane source for a cockpit modernization if they want to do it.

Second I am amused at any idea that BBD has anything approaching an efficient or cheap process for producing anything associated with the CS planes. That doesn’t jive with anything that has happened thus far from the huge cash losses as they are made to the snail like delivery pace. There is a reason that BBD paid Airbus a bunch of money to take the program over. If it had gobs of technology with harvesting then someone would have paid BBD for it.

I feel like suggesting the A320neo needs CS influence is borderline insane.
 
mjoelnir
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 2:06 pm

keesje wrote:
Apart from the engines the A320 has gone through only evolutionairy small improvements / upgrades. Even the NEO is basically about new engines.

A serious MidLifeUpgrade could theoratically be part of the family's lifecycle. It would include more radical changes that significant improve efffectivety / costs but would decrease commanlity too. I'm thinking new materials, new tail, wing, cockpitredesign, systemarchitecture etc. Each seperately might not be worthwhile, but if you do them all/many significant improvement might result. But you pay a price in terms of time, commonality and upfront investment.


The upgrades have been evolutionary, yes, but if you add them all together, the A320 model from 2018 is quite different from the A320 model 1988. I assume for example that the hardware driving the Flight control system is quite different between both models.
I assume that improvements will be handled similar in the future, step by step.

I do not see any reason why Airbus should give up commonality between A320, A330, A350 and A380 to move the A320 in the direction of the C-series. I could rather imagine, that improvements from the A350 will be moved to the A320 and A330 platforms.

What actually are the features making the C-series cockpit and FBW more "modern" and better than on the A320? I would like to put a question mark with that declaration.
 
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seahawk
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 2:33 pm

mjoelnir wrote:
bigjku wrote:
Revelation wrote:
Since we thrive on the discussion of semantics here, I think "studying" is different than "going to work on".


Also is is not equally likely that Airbus looked at the other options and decided a modest update is the only real way forward rather than investing several billion in an old design about to be challenged at the top end by an all new airplane? The plus plus is not a minor commitment after all. At some point the A320 will die. Airbus can’t get too deep into revamping it in my view. They might get caught like they did on the A330.


Or Airbus just took a deep look at the current order book and counted undelivered frames. 6,177 A320 family frames are undelivered on order. It is perhaps more important to move production rates fast to 70 a month. Keeping major upgrades for a time when orders are needed.


Or to put it that way. It is very difficult to ramp up the production to new heights and simultaneously add another variant to the production chain.
 
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BaconButty
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 2:48 pm

c933103 wrote:
I don't think re-engine is in any of the airbus's plan although that doesn't preclude their choice of doing it in the future


My understanding:
1. A320 Plus: increased fuel capacity, a longer fuselage and improvements to the A321's wing
2. A320 Plus Plus: New carbon fibre wing (plus the above presumably?)
3. A320XLR: Low cost - extra fuel (perhaps a pip? MTOW increase?)

There's now way on earth #2 doesn't involve a re-engine, and it will be comparable to whatever goes on the NMA, Ultrafan if they go RR. If they invest that much, they're creating a new sub family anyway. They will need to be competing with a clean sheet, they can't be giving away a TFSC advantage as well.
#3 clearly not re-engined. They may press Pratt and GE for a PIP.
#1 maybe, maybe not.

So maybe the fact the studies have been "shelved" does suggest #1 is off the table. But not #2 which in any case might co-exist with #3.
Down with that sort of thing!
 
Newbiepilot
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 3:03 pm

rheinwaldner wrote:
Newbiepilot wrote:
...

Now you made another post that does notshow, that the A320 studies are shelved because of a questionable business plan. In you quote there are even two (other) reasons mentioned. It requires a tremendous amount of creative interpretation, to read "the A320++ business case is not water proof" from your own quotes....


I never said I knew exactly why the A320++ was shelved. It likely was for a combination of reasons which has resulted in the A321XLR studies. You seem more interested in arguing and trying to find hypocrisy than discussing so I will end there.

mjoelnir wrote:
keesje wrote:
Apart from the engines the A320 has gone through only evolutionairy small improvements / upgrades. Even the NEO is basically about new engines.

A serious MidLifeUpgrade could theoratically be part of the family's lifecycle. It would include more radical changes that significant improve efffectivety / costs but would decrease commanlity too. I'm thinking new materials, new tail, wing, cockpitredesign, systemarchitecture etc. Each seperately might not be worthwhile, but if you do them all/many significant improvement might result. But you pay a price in terms of time, commonality and upfront investment.


The upgrades have been evolutionary, yes, but if you add them all together, the A320 model from 2018 is quite different from the A320 model 1988. I assume for example that the hardware driving the Flight control system is quite different between both models.
I assume that improvements will be handled similar in the future, step by step.

I do not see any reason why Airbus should give up commonality between A320, A330, A350 and A380 to move the A320 in the direction of the C-series. I could rather imagine, that improvements from the A350 will be moved to the A320 and A330 platforms.

What actually are the features making the C-series cockpit and FBW more "modern" and better than on the A320? I would like to put a question mark with that declaration.


Mjoelnir, I think you have an excellent point. Upgrades and redesigns are justified by some positive impact in either operational capability, reliability, or efficiency. Change for the sake of change or even mild improvement is highly discouraged. Airlines have huge spare parts and inventories as well as overhaul and repair agreements with vendors and suppliers. Rolling part numbers adds cost to the maintenance costs of the airplane since it results in churn, retrofits or more spare parts or configurations to keep track of. Marketing departments publicly want the latest and greatest yet finance and engineering wants minimal change.

keesje wrote:
I'm thinking new materials, new tail, wing, cockpitredesign, systemarchitecture etc. Each seperately might not be worthwhile, but if you do them all/many significant improvement might result. But you pay a price in terms of time, commonality and upfront investment.


Where is the benefit from such a radical overhaul? The benefits that airlines pay for are fuel burn reduction, increase in payload/range, or navigation improvements.

Cockpits have already radically changed since the introduction of the A320. GPS, RNAV, EFB, Heads Up Display, CAT IIIb, RVSM, etc. Most of these innovations are barely noticeable to the untrained eye, but these are what the airlines pay for since it improves the operation and allows the airplane to do more and fly more places more efficiently. Avionics upgrades is a huge business and doesn’t wait for other improvements. The A320 and 737 are pretty similar in navigational capability. Other than bigger screens to mimic the 737MAX, what cockpit redesign is needed?

Changing systems architecture has very high certification costs and increases maintenance costs with configuration and spare parts issues. Upsizing systems is common when tied to more capability. I see very very little interest in modifying the systems configuration unless absolutely necessary caused by other upgrades like a new wing.

New wing, tail and materials would likely be tied to the A320plus plus that we’ve heard about. Those are big changes in capability and weight. That would probably affect everything else. THe reason for those would be to increase payload and probably capacity. We will see if Airbus renergizes that effort if the NMA gets launched.
 
Newbiepilot
Posts: 3158
Joined: Tue Aug 30, 2016 10:18 pm

Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 3:16 pm

seahawk wrote:
mjoelnir wrote:
bigjku wrote:

Also is is not equally likely that Airbus looked at the other options and decided a modest update is the only real way forward rather than investing several billion in an old design about to be challenged at the top end by an all new airplane? The plus plus is not a minor commitment after all. At some point the A320 will die. Airbus can’t get too deep into revamping it in my view. They might get caught like they did on the A330.


Or Airbus just took a deep look at the current order book and counted undelivered frames. 6,177 A320 family frames are undelivered on order. It is perhaps more important to move production rates fast to 70 a month. Keeping major upgrades for a time when orders are needed.


Or to put it that way. It is very difficult to ramp up the production to new heights and simultaneously add another variant to the production chain.


Very good point. I believe part of why the 787-10 was not launched until 2013 is so Boeing could focus engineering efforts on production before adding complexity of a new version. I could see the same going on with the A321 plus.

Boeing also waited to launch the 737-10 until work on the 737-8 was mostly complete. Stretching the 737-9 into the 737-10 may have been too much strain on production and engineering resources given the head start that Airbus had.
 
Egerton
Posts: 864
Joined: Sun Jan 11, 2015 9:50 am

Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 6:46 pm

keesje wrote:
Egerton wrote:
Today in the UK there has been a lot of whinging and whining from Airbus's Tom Williams and their UK boss about things which might go wrong with Brexit. You can take your choice that it is Project Fear again (more deja vue) or that is essential that the UK Govt immediately obey the edict from a manufacturer with an axe to grind.

More importantly there is (accidental?) mention of a new wing design (type not mentioned) coming up for sign off this summer, with the implied threat that it will not be built in UK if UK govt does not obey the Airbus edict.

You can be sure that UK Govt is already doing its best to get to the same objectives as Airbus, but the EU27 are behaving as if the £80 billion of EU27 surplus goods the UK buys from them annually matters little. Mind you, by the time Brexit arrives there will likely be no EU for the UK to negotiate with.

Your guess is as good as mine, but it maybe is a new or modified A321 wing they are letting slip about.


No, no, the A321 Plus Plus has been shelved, somebody said so only a month ago. :wink2:


The discussion on new wing designs and when they might see the light of day appears to have missed a point. If the existing A320 wing manufacturing capacity is being operated flat out, there is a need for more wing manufacturing capacity. This might happen to coincide with a revised wing design requiring new tooling, which will be on a long lead time.

If this conjecture might be correct, then it might make good sense to kill the two bird of more capacity and new tooling with one stone? Such a set of tooling would naturally imply better productivity? Thus a shorter manufacturing and assembly time with less man hours, so a higher throughput per month, and save working capital?

Whilst writing, it seems to this Brit that it might be better to reduce the too-and-from flow across Europe of numerous smallish component parts. This design of production system is still operating as a result of the far distant political past of Airbus. The opportunity may arise with increased production to make the system more efficient. There is no obvious reason why more smallish parts being used to make wings should not be made in the UK, and more different smallish parts for other large components like fuselages, tail planes & fins should not be made in Germany, France and Spain? This would appear to make sense to reduce speed up production flow and improve working capital across the manufacturing process? Nobody in their right mind would today invent such a production system as is operated today.
 
Flyglobal
Posts: 516
Joined: Sat Mar 15, 2008 6:25 am

Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Tue Jun 26, 2018 8:35 pm

Egerton wrote:
keesje wrote:
Egerton wrote:
Today in the UK there has been a lot of whinging and whining from Airbus's Tom Williams and their UK boss about things which might go wrong with Brexit. You can take your choice that it is Project Fear again (more deja vue) or that is essential that the UK Govt immediately obey the edict from a manufacturer with an axe to grind.

More importantly there is (accidental?) mention of a new wing design (type not mentioned) coming up for sign off this summer, with the implied threat that it will not be built in UK if UK govt does not obey the Airbus edict.

You can be sure that UK Govt is already doing its best to get to the same objectives as Airbus, but the EU27 are behaving as if the £80 billion of EU27 surplus goods the UK buys from them annually matters little. Mind you, by the time Brexit arrives there will likely be no EU for the UK to negotiate with.

Your guess is as good as mine, but it maybe is a new or modified A321 wing they are letting slip about.


No, no, the A321 Plus Plus has been shelved, somebody said so only a month ago. :wink2:


The discussion on new wing designs and when they might see the light of day appears to have missed a point. If the existing A320 wing manufacturing capacity is being operated flat out, there is a need for more wing manufacturing capacity. This might happen to coincide with a revised wing design requiring new tooling, which will be on a long lead time.

If this conjecture might be correct, then it might make good sense to kill the two bird of more capacity and new tooling with one stone? Such a set of tooling would naturally imply better productivity? Thus a shorter manufacturing and assembly time with less man hours, so a higher throughput per month, and save working capital?

Whilst writing, it seems to this Brit that it might be better to reduce the too-and-from flow across Europe of numerous smallish component parts. This design of production system is still operating as a result of the far distant political past of Airbus. The opportunity may arise with increased production to make the system more efficient. There is no obvious reason why more smallish parts being used to make wings should not be made in the UK, and more different smallish parts for other large components like fuselages, tail planes & fins should not be made in Germany, France and Spain? This would appear to make sense to reduce speed up production flow and improve working capital across the manufacturing process? Nobody in their right mind would today invent such a production system as is operated today.


A lot of valid considerations.

I would add that with the upcoming EU Exit of the brits, the location of a new wing facility could be in continental europe or even in Mobile Alabama (alongsidew ith CS100/300.

Flyglobal
 
WIederling
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jun 27, 2018 7:51 am

Egerton wrote:
Whilst writing, it seems to this Brit that it might be better to reduce the too-and-from flow across Europe of numerous smallish component parts. This design of production system is still operating as a result of the far distant political past of Airbus.


IMU this is one of those "duhh, simple, obvious but wrong" arguments.
In a high qualification and value production environment its is cheaper
to distribute manufacturing and transport products from place to place
than lumping all manufacturing in one place.

in the distributed case you can have short commute times and a desirable living environment
while i the lumped case you run into excessive commute times, skyrocketing living cost
and in general higher tensioned society.

Volkswagen in Wolfsburg, Germany used to be and still is to a major part "a lumped" manufacturing site.
real estate pricing is through the roof.
workers commute from as far away as Minden, Hameln, ... every day taking 1..1.5h each way.
This is madness.
Murphy is an optimist
 
carl50mq
Posts: 32
Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2007 4:03 am

Re: Airbus A321XLR?

Wed Jun 27, 2018 8:08 am

Arion640 wrote:
While i'm not an engineer, I'd guess there's only a certain amount you can do to an airframe before a clean sheet design is needed.

I guess you're talking about the 737?
:lol:
 
Egerton
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Joined: Sun Jan 11, 2015 9:50 am

Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jun 27, 2018 10:01 am

WIederling wrote:
Egerton wrote:
Whilst writing, it seems to this Brit that it might be better to reduce the too-and-from flow across Europe of numerous smallish component parts. This design of production system is still operating as a result of the far distant political past of Airbus.


IMU this is one of those "duhh, simple, obvious but wrong" arguments.
In a high qualification and value production environment its is cheaper
to distribute manufacturing and transport products from place to place
than lumping all manufacturing in one place.

in the distributed case you can have short commute times and a desirable living environment
while i the lumped case you run into excessive commute times, skyrocketing living cost
and in general higher tensioned society.

Volkswagen in Wolfsburg, Germany used to be and still is to a major part "a lumped" manufacturing site.
real estate pricing is through the roof.
workers commute from as far away as Minden, Hameln, ... every day taking 1..1.5h each way.
This is madness.


Thanks for your thoughts. I very much agree with your points but I was not suggesting that all the manufacturing and assembly should be in one location like Wolfsburg. On the contrary. You make the same good points that I have made in the past when I suggested that Toulouse (for one) is getting to big and needs to do less. The UK examples are any one of the many early Industrial Revolution industries like coal and steel towns. These were one horse towns which suffered when the boom was followed by the inevitable bust.

I assumed that all the existing major plants in UK, France, Germany & Spain (and now Northern Ireland) would remain. It is not that difficult to transport major components like wings, fuselage lumps, empennage etc. But it is daft (in general) making the tens of thousands of the individual smaller parts all over the place and then moving them in penny packets every which way. Just in time manufacture is a target best achieved when the supply chain is not ridiculously extended, and the number of individual components is not excessive. Sadly, the free movement which was such a plus point of the Single Market etc is now going to be a hindrance. This is because of the terrorist threat and because of the unnecessarily high transport & customs charges currently incurred, which will only get worse and will be added at most national borders. Hence I suggested that more of the smaller parts should be made closer to (or less far distant from) the major plants, and be built up into larger sub-units. I probably failed to make myself clear, apologies.
 
mjoelnir
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jun 27, 2018 11:50 am

BaconButty wrote:
c933103 wrote:
I don't think re-engine is in any of the airbus's plan although that doesn't preclude their choice of doing it in the future


My understanding:
1. A320 Plus: increased fuel capacity, a longer fuselage and improvements to the A321's wing
2. A320 Plus Plus: New carbon fibre wing (plus the above presumably?)
3. A320XLR: Low cost - extra fuel (perhaps a pip? MTOW increase?)

There's now way on earth #2 doesn't involve a re-engine, and it will be comparable to whatever goes on the NMA, Ultrafan if they go RR. If they invest that much, they're creating a new sub family anyway. They will need to be competing with a clean sheet, they can't be giving away a TFSC advantage as well.
#3 clearly not re-engined. They may press Pratt and GE for a PIP.
#1 maybe, maybe not.

So maybe the fact the studies have been "shelved" does suggest #1 is off the table. But not #2 which in any case might co-exist with #3.


That the plus plus would need new engines, I think is only a hopeful thought by Boeing aficionados.

A plus plus would have a new wing. That alone could allow a MTOW increase without increasing engine power, while keeping to a similar field performance. In flight, the current engines could be enough. A four wheel bogie on the MLG could keep the current rotation angle with a lengthened fuselage.

The 757-200 has PW2000-37/40/43, the lowest thrust PW-2000-37 offers only 36,600 lbs for a much higher MTOW than the current 97 t on the A321neoLR. I do not know exactly where the 757-200 started off, but that was around 110 t.
Last edited by mjoelnir on Wed Jun 27, 2018 12:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
mjoelnir
Posts: 7384
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jun 27, 2018 12:10 pm

Egerton wrote:
keesje wrote:
Egerton wrote:
Today in the UK there has been a lot of whinging and whining from Airbus's Tom Williams and their UK boss about things which might go wrong with Brexit. You can take your choice that it is Project Fear again (more deja vue) or that is essential that the UK Govt immediately obey the edict from a manufacturer with an axe to grind.

More importantly there is (accidental?) mention of a new wing design (type not mentioned) coming up for sign off this summer, with the implied threat that it will not be built in UK if UK govt does not obey the Airbus edict.

You can be sure that UK Govt is already doing its best to get to the same objectives as Airbus, but the EU27 are behaving as if the £80 billion of EU27 surplus goods the UK buys from them annually matters little. Mind you, by the time Brexit arrives there will likely be no EU for the UK to negotiate with.

Your guess is as good as mine, but it maybe is a new or modified A321 wing they are letting slip about.


No, no, the A321 Plus Plus has been shelved, somebody said so only a month ago. :wink2:


The discussion on new wing designs and when they might see the light of day appears to have missed a point. If the existing A320 wing manufacturing capacity is being operated flat out, there is a need for more wing manufacturing capacity. This might happen to coincide with a revised wing design requiring new tooling, which will be on a long lead time.

If this conjecture might be correct, then it might make good sense to kill the two bird of more capacity and new tooling with one stone? Such a set of tooling would naturally imply better productivity? Thus a shorter manufacturing and assembly time with less man hours, so a higher throughput per month, and save working capital?

Whilst writing, it seems to this Brit that it might be better to reduce the too-and-from flow across Europe of numerous smallish component parts. This design of production system is still operating as a result of the far distant political past of Airbus. The opportunity may arise with increased production to make the system more efficient. There is no obvious reason why more smallish parts being used to make wings should not be made in the UK, and more different smallish parts for other large components like fuselages, tail planes & fins should not be made in Germany, France and Spain? This would appear to make sense to reduce speed up production flow and improve working capital across the manufacturing process? Nobody in their right mind would today invent such a production system as is operated today.


Brexiters close their ears and eyes to the companies expecting worse conditions after the exit of the UK from the EU. Transport and administrative costs will rise for companies having production facilities on both sides of the Channel. The example before Brexit was 4 % extra cost doing business inside the EU compared to doing business between the UK and Switzerland. For established business, UK with for example Canada, added costs have already been included in the business plan and should not change with Brexit.

Anyway, the Airbus production in the UK in regards to the A320 family is wings. Not tail planes, fuselage components etc. The A320 wing production at Airbus is already highly automated and that is an recent advancement. At the same time throughput was increased, without increasing staff and should cover up to 70 pairs a month. All wing components, like skins, ribs, spars etc. are produced at the UK site.
A change with moving wing production out of the UK would not be instant, but Airbus has declared, that they would refrain from additional investments in the UK, if the business conditions deteriorate after Brexit. As it is, new investments are on hold.
 
Kikko19
Posts: 405
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jun 27, 2018 1:30 pm

mjoelnir wrote:
Egerton wrote:
keesje wrote:

No, no, the A321 Plus Plus has been shelved, somebody said so only a month ago. :wink2:


The discussion on new wing designs and when they might see the light of day appears to have missed a point. If the existing A320 wing manufacturing capacity is being operated flat out, there is a need for more wing manufacturing capacity. This might happen to coincide with a revised wing design requiring new tooling, which will be on a long lead time.

If this conjecture might be correct, then it might make good sense to kill the two bird of more capacity and new tooling with one stone? Such a set of tooling would naturally imply better productivity? Thus a shorter manufacturing and assembly time with less man hours, so a higher throughput per month, and save working capital?

Whilst writing, it seems to this Brit that it might be better to reduce the too-and-from flow across Europe of numerous smallish component parts. This design of production system is still operating as a result of the far distant political past of Airbus. The opportunity may arise with increased production to make the system more efficient. There is no obvious reason why more smallish parts being used to make wings should not be made in the UK, and more different smallish parts for other large components like fuselages, tail planes & fins should not be made in Germany, France and Spain? This would appear to make sense to reduce speed up production flow and improve working capital across the manufacturing process? Nobody in their right mind would today invent such a production system as is operated today.


Brexiters close their ears and eyes to the companies expecting worse conditions after the exit of the UK from the EU. Transport and administrative costs will rise for companies having production facilities on both sides of the Channel. The example before Brexit was 4 % extra cost doing business inside the EU compared to doing business between the UK and Switzerland. For established business, UK with for example Canada, added costs have already been included in the business plan and should not change with Brexit.

Anyway, the Airbus production in the UK in regards to the A320 family is wings. Not tail planes, fuselage components etc. The A320 wing production at Airbus is already highly automated and that is an recent advancement. At the same time throughput was increased, without increasing staff and should cover up to 70 pairs a month. All wing components, like skins, ribs, spars etc. are produced at the UK site.
A change with moving wing production out of the UK would not be instant, but Airbus has declared, that they would refrain from additional investments in the UK, if the business conditions deteriorate after Brexit. As it is, new investments are on hold.


likely UK will lower the taxes for foreigners companies, so eventually will be an advantage to Uk to produce there. europe is threatening Uk (and others looking at it) as if the brexit will be succesfull everybody else will follow with -exit. IMHO
 
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Richard28
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jun 27, 2018 2:18 pm

Kikko19 wrote:
likely UK will lower the taxes for foreigners companies, so eventually will be an advantage to Uk to produce there. europe is threatening Uk (and others looking at it) as if the brexit will be succesfull everybody else will follow with -exit. IMHO


Tax rates are often fragile and can change with every new parliament or even every year with every new annual budget statement.

So whilst important, for a huge long term undertaking such as this, there are other more important considerations, such as longer term political and economic stability and the free movement of goods, services, capital and labour.
 
Egerton
Posts: 864
Joined: Sun Jan 11, 2015 9:50 am

Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jun 27, 2018 2:19 pm

mjoelnir wrote:
Egerton wrote:
keesje wrote:

No, no, the A321 Plus Plus has been shelved, somebody said so only a month ago. :wink2:


The discussion on new wing designs and when they might see the light of day appears to have missed a point. If the existing A320 wing manufacturing capacity is being operated flat out, there is a need for more wing manufacturing capacity. This might happen to coincide with a revised wing design requiring new tooling, which will be on a long lead time.

If this conjecture might be correct, then it might make good sense to kill the two bird of more capacity and new tooling with one stone? Such a set of tooling would naturally imply better productivity? Thus a shorter manufacturing and assembly time with less man hours, so a higher throughput per month, and save working capital?

Whilst writing, it seems to this Brit that it might be better to reduce the too-and-from flow across Europe of numerous smallish component parts. This design of production system is still operating as a result of the far distant political past of Airbus. The opportunity may arise with increased production to make the system more efficient. There is no obvious reason why more smallish parts being used to make wings should not be made in the UK, and more different smallish parts for other large components like fuselages, tail planes & fins should not be made in Germany, France and Spain? This would appear to make sense to reduce speed up production flow and improve working capital across the manufacturing process? Nobody in their right mind would today invent such a production system as is operated today.


Brexiters close their ears and eyes to the companies expecting worse conditions after the exit of the UK from the EU. Transport and administrative costs will rise for companies having production facilities on both sides of the Channel. The example before Brexit was 4 % extra cost doing business inside the EU compared to doing business between the UK and Switzerland. For established business, UK with for example Canada, added costs have already been included in the business plan and should not change with Brexit.

Anyway, the Airbus production in the UK in regards to the A320 family is wings. Not tail planes, fuselage components etc. The A320 wing production at Airbus is already highly automated and that is an recent advancement. At the same time throughput was increased, without increasing staff and should cover up to 70 pairs a month. All wing components, like skins, ribs, spars etc. are produced at the UK site.
A change with moving wing production out of the UK would not be instant, but Airbus has declared, that they would refrain from additional investments in the UK, if the business conditions deteriorate after Brexit. As it is, new investments are on hold.


Thanks for your thoughts. My comments were not directed at the Brexit issue, although I am a Brexiteer.

I was commenting upon obvious possible improvements in the Airbus manufacturing and assembly processes. With or without Brexit. Airbus's Tom Williams, who is the top chap on these issues, appears to think that the (3) UK wing plants will turn into shambles because of Brexit and consequently delay deliveries of wings etc to other Airbus plants on the Continent. If, as you state, all wing parts are made in UK, and thus the only deliveries from these plants (one each in Broughton N Wales, Bristol and N Ireland) are nearly complete or complete wings, then what is he on about? By the way, the BBC tv cameras were invited to the Broughton wing plant and their reporting strongly suggested that Williams was referring to investments would be withheld there as that plant would turn into a shambles.

An explanation might be that either Williams or yourself have the facts wrong?

It is not obvious that wing sets at the rate of c 70 per month will cause any delivery difficulty? But tens of thousand smallish component parts being gummed up in a customs snafu might. The worst case of customs stafu might occur on either side of the Channel. The only time we have witnesses any such chaos is when the French go on strike. Normally our coastal ports (actually the largest UK port by value is LHR) run like clockwork with goods to and from the EU and the wide World. The latter trade is increasing all the time at a faster rate than our EU trade, and has been for years.

I hope this helps you.
 
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Richard28
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jun 27, 2018 2:50 pm

Egerton wrote:
Airbus's Tom Williams, who is the top chap on these issues, appears to think that the (3) UK wing plants will turn into shambles because of Brexit and consequently delay deliveries of wings etc to other Airbus plants on the Continent. If, as you state, all wing parts are made in UK, and thus the only deliveries from these plants (one each in Broughton N Wales, Bristol and N Ireland) are nearly complete or complete wings, then what is he on about?


There is a difference between manufacture and assembly.

According to Airbuses submission to the UK Select Committee:

"Airbus relies on a highly integrated supply chain across its home nations. The continued ability to move components and equipment across borders quickly and efficiently is crucial to our UK business"

http://publicaffairs.airbus.com/dam/ass ... idence.pdf
 
Egerton
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Joined: Sun Jan 11, 2015 9:50 am

Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jun 27, 2018 4:41 pm

Richard28 wrote:
Egerton wrote:
Airbus's Tom Williams, who is the top chap on these issues, appears to think that the (3) UK wing plants will turn into shambles because of Brexit and consequently delay deliveries of wings etc to other Airbus plants on the Continent. If, as you state, all wing parts are made in UK, and thus the only deliveries from these plants (one each in Broughton N Wales, Bristol and N Ireland) are nearly complete or complete wings, then what is he on about?


There is a difference between manufacture and assembly.

According to Airbuses submission to the UK Select Committee:

"Airbus relies on a highly integrated supply chain across its home nations. The continued ability to move components and equipment across borders quickly and efficiently is crucial to our UK business"

http://publicaffairs.airbus.com/dam/ass ... idence.pdf


Thanks. None of this is new to me. I am suggesting that what was set up for political reasons in years gone by when production was a tiny fraction of what it is now, would benefit from improvement. I appreciate that Airbus folk are as resistant to change as any large complex firm. Maybe it would pay to look at the transformation going on at RR? At the end of the day, RR shareholders lost patience with the excuses and are supporting change. Look at the GE corporate mess, they will be lucky to survive their shareholders' distrust.
 
mjoelnir
Posts: 7384
Joined: Sun Feb 03, 2013 11:06 pm

Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jun 27, 2018 6:19 pm

Egerton wrote:
Richard28 wrote:
Egerton wrote:
Airbus's Tom Williams, who is the top chap on these issues, appears to think that the (3) UK wing plants will turn into shambles because of Brexit and consequently delay deliveries of wings etc to other Airbus plants on the Continent. If, as you state, all wing parts are made in UK, and thus the only deliveries from these plants (one each in Broughton N Wales, Bristol and N Ireland) are nearly complete or complete wings, then what is he on about?


There is a difference between manufacture and assembly.

According to Airbuses submission to the UK Select Committee:

"Airbus relies on a highly integrated supply chain across its home nations. The continued ability to move components and equipment across borders quickly and efficiently is crucial to our UK business"

http://publicaffairs.airbus.com/dam/ass ... idence.pdf


Thanks. None of this is new to me. I am suggesting that what was set up for political reasons in years gone by when production was a tiny fraction of what it is now, would benefit from improvement. I appreciate that Airbus folk are as resistant to change as any large complex firm. Maybe it would pay to look at the transformation going on at RR? At the end of the day, RR shareholders lost patience with the excuses and are supporting change. Look at the GE corporate mess, they will be lucky to survive their shareholders' distrust.


In what way is Airbus resistant to change? The consortium was changed to a corporation. The corporation was streamlined in the last years. There has been a lot of change to the production lines and I am not talking about the FALs. The UK part of the consortium has been bought by Airbus. The distributed production Airbus prefers, has been copied by Boeing, distributing production over a geographically far bigger area.
Just because the Airbus complaint about worsening future conditions regarding production in the UK after Brexit, does not fit your Brexit Ra RA mentality, does not make it something to be ignored. The UK will go through economical hard times after Brexit.
 
Egerton
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jun 27, 2018 10:39 pm

mjoelnir wrote:
Egerton wrote:
Richard28 wrote:

There is a difference between manufacture and assembly.

According to Airbuses submission to the UK Select Committee:

"Airbus relies on a highly integrated supply chain across its home nations. The continued ability to move components and equipment across borders quickly and efficiently is crucial to our UK business"

http://publicaffairs.airbus.com/dam/ass ... idence.pdf


Thanks. None of this is new to me. I am suggesting that what was set up for political reasons in years gone by when production was a tiny fraction of what it is now, would benefit from improvement. I appreciate that Airbus folk are as resistant to change as any large complex firm. Maybe it would pay to look at the transformation going on at RR? At the end of the day, RR shareholders lost patience with the excuses and are supporting change. Look at the GE corporate mess, they will be lucky to survive their shareholders' distrust.


In what way is Airbus resistant to change? The consortium was changed to a corporation. The corporation was streamlined in the last years. There has been a lot of change to the production lines and I am not talking about the FALs. The UK part of the consortium has been bought by Airbus. The distributed production Airbus prefers, has been copied by Boeing, distributing production over a geographically far bigger area.
Just because the Airbus complaint about worsening future conditions regarding production in the UK after Brexit, does not fit your Brexit Ra RA mentality, does not make it something to be ignored. The UK will go through economical hard times after Brexit.


The warning has very much not been ignored. Our independent HM Revenue & Customs top team have being throwing resources at the many issues on a contingency planning basis ever since our Referendum was announced - that is to say way before it was held. HMRC now expect to live run Beta versions of two quite separate major software set-ups this Autumn. Either will be ready to go live on 29 March 2019 at 11.00pm. One set-up is the long existing software updated, and the second is a completely new system which has been in the works for many years, also updated. There will be about the same number of lorries as now, but much more electronic documentation. In due course users will improve their own systems to optimise their internal costs and fees due to customs officials. HMRC seem confident that if need be for the March 2019 exit they will have all the UK borders ready to go, as do the port operators and everyone else actually involved. (Contrary to those sitting on the side-lines shouting the odds like at a Roman Colesseum; as has Airbus and other multinational corporations to the contempt of the well informed.)

The 'deepest possible partnership on trade' and 'a friction-less border as possible ' have been the unchanged policies of the UK government since our PM's 2 March 2018 Mansion House speech. This was after our Referendum result on 23rd June 2016, and the new Prime Minister coming into power and after we had a General Election in which both major political parties had manifestos promising Brexit, as instructed by 17.4 million voters. This trade partnership has not started to be discussed yet, owing to the EU27 having set up the conditions for discussions such that trade comes last. There is no point Airbus putting a gun to the head of the UK to demand UK must carry out the UK's own policy. The gun should be pointed at the EU27, or better still not brandished at all. It takes two to tango, the UK and the EU27. The March 2019 exit is a viable option as explained.

In the UK, we have a democracy and the European Union (Withdrawal) Act is now law, having been passed by both parts of our Parliament and having received Royal Assent.

In my judgement the most likely outcome will be a UK exit in March 2019. This will be because one or other of the EU27 bodies who must give their formal approval for the exit terms will decline to do so. I also judge that this outcome will not be the disaster that some of the multinationals have been whining about.

Anyway, how and when the UK exits from the EU was not what I was writing about, I was suggesting improvement could be made in the highly integrated supply chains for smallish parts which was set up for political reasons in years gone by when production was a tiny fraction of what it is now. So far, the debate on this has not resulted in a general acceptance.

I apologise to Moderators for this deviation into a somewhat detained explanation of what seems to me to important stuff on the production rate which can be anticipated in the coming 2 years or so, for wings for the whole Airbus line up. In short, in my view, there is no obvious reason for the rate to be any different from whatever is already in the Airbus plan. I feel sure that those who have contributing to my essays on this are very intelligent people, who with knowledge of the facts will reach the same conclusions as I have. They might wish to pass this onto Tom Williams, so he is similarly acquainted with the facts.
Last edited by Egerton on Wed Jun 27, 2018 10:53 pm, edited 3 times in total.
 
JoeCanuck
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jun 27, 2018 11:33 pm

The military has been getting deep into the use of conformal fuel tanks. The wing root fairing seems to me to be a lot of space that could be used for fuel.
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1989worstyear
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Re: Airbus A321XLR?

Thu Jun 28, 2018 4:07 am

strfyr51 wrote:
c933103 wrote:
A380MSN004 wrote:
Would be interesting to know what range is XLR?
A 4th ACT would be doable on the existent A321LR but with the bulk load heavily loaded and some restriction on High dimension luggages = lot of headackes and bags restrictions on operations just to get an extra 400-500nm extra range from the LR range

If it have a larger wing then it would have both more efficiency and more fuel capacity available that can fly further.

it would require a larger and deeper wing at the wing root carrying extra ACT's is not the answee but I don't believe Airbus is going to re-design the wing.


Shame they couldn't redesign - the -200 wing is 30 years old in November.
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JoeCanuck
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Thu Jun 28, 2018 5:50 am

Revelation wrote:
c933103 wrote:
I don't think the distinction between shelved/cancelled mean a lot in this context. Now they're going to work on XLR, it's most likely that they will finish XLR (And maybe do others thing in the mean time like upgrade production lines), and NMA will most definitely launch NMA before XLR EIS. At the time they can further determine what NMA will be like, what are the narket reception to a 321 will increased range or a larger narrowbody, how competitive will neo plus/plus plus are, and even future market situation/forecast at the time, and then further decide their strategy. They can reuse what they shelved now for work at that time but there will be no need for them to be bound by these current studies

Since we thrive on the discussion of semantics here, I think "studying" is different than "going to work on".


Amen, brother.
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Taxi645
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Thu Jun 28, 2018 8:10 am

We’re hearing about 45.000lbf engines for the 797. If Boeing indeed goes down this route a possible Airbus mid-term response could be ignoring most of the NMA initially and go full on after the 737 even before the 797 enters service.


How? By launching a new composite wing. Not a 40m+ wing for a fictional A325 or anything but a 36m one for the whole A320 series. The set of wings would safe say 2.5t of weight and have an ACT worth of extra fuel volume (3.000L).

This together with a significant engine PIP, further improvement on the airframe and sufficient production capacity to really pressure the 737 could potentially put Boeing in a very tough spot. Making the 737 finally obsolete (more or less) and in urgent need of replacement even before the 797 enters service. Think about that for a moment, not a good position to be in.


So what would be looking at?

- Say a new composite wing would improve L/D by 3.5% (from much newer design and further improved wing end configuration).

- Say a 2024 service entry engine PIP would add another 3%.


Together that’s already an 6.6% SFC improvement.

If we then assume a 2.5t reduction from the composite wing and a further 0.5t from airframe weight optimization you’re also looking add a 3t weight reduction (3.6t compared to an A321LR on the same flight because you loose the weight for an additional ACT).

If we look at the range added to the A320NEO you would be looking at 6.6% SFC improvement and 2.4t/11% fuel increase (the full 3t if you can add even more volume to the wing). Together that’s a whopping 18.5% increase in range at an even slightly lower MTOW!

Above together would probably be enough to put the 737 in serious trouble. However Airbus then still has the options reconsidering fuselage lengths (A320.5/A322 or something along that line). The above range extensions could easily facilitate such fuselage stretches at current MTOW. The resulting designs would only cover the bottom of the NMA, but by that time would come from a fully known and optimized 70 or more per month production line... That's hard to compete with. They than later could look at further countering the 797 by either larger wing options and/or a lighter A330 successor.


The recent focus on production (capacity) and shelving of the plus(plus) actually would enable such a move.
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SomebodyInTLS
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Thu Jun 28, 2018 12:08 pm

JoeCanuck wrote:
The military has been getting deep into the use of conformal fuel tanks. The wing root fairing seems to me to be a lot of space that could be used for fuel.


There are a lot of systems in there though...
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tealnz
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jul 11, 2018 12:40 pm

It's official. Here's the interview https://tinyurl.com/yb6aqtxy with Enders in Aviation Week:

What additional potential is in the A321neo? Airbus is conducting several studies, including an XLR with even more range than the A321LR. I have to say I am amazed how much extra potential our engineers have found in the A321 over the last few years and how much more they could realize. I don’t want to reveal too much, but when I say that we are relaxed about the NMA, that has a lot to do with the additional potential we see in the A321neo.

So... we still want to know, where are they going to stash the extra tankage? It must be a significant volume: they're not going to add an XLR label for an extra 100nm.
And it's not just an XLR: Enders says Airbus is "conducting several studies".
 
kurtverbose
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jul 11, 2018 12:45 pm

He also said he sees a new NB around 2030, so that would seem to put the kibosh on extensive changes like rewinging.
 
Planesmart
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jul 11, 2018 1:06 pm

kurtverbose wrote:
He also said he sees a new NB around 2030, so that would seem to put the kibosh on extensive changes like rewinging.

Wouldn't expect specifics to be telegraphed unless Airbus are ready to take orders, and see existing 320 family orders switched / deferred?

Plans for a new wing (or second wing option), taller undercarriage, more length and higher thrust engines are probably ready.
 
JoeCanuck
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jul 11, 2018 7:29 pm

SomebodyInTLS wrote:
JoeCanuck wrote:
The military has been getting deep into the use of conformal fuel tanks. The wing root fairing seems to me to be a lot of space that could be used for fuel.


There are a lot of systems in there though...


True...but the advantage to conformal tanks, is that they are designed to be on the airframe, not in it...essentially more aerodynamic drop tanks that you don't drop. Speaking of that...what about under wing tanks...I mean real drop tanks? Obviously not dropping them, but removable if you didn't need the range.
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masi1157
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jul 11, 2018 7:39 pm

Seriously, where would you expect that extra tank volume to be? If not inside the cargo hold, which means a lot of lost volume around it, where else could it be but instead of part of the cargo hold?


Gruß, masi1157
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JoeCanuck
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Re: Reuters: Airbus is studying A321XLR with extended range over LR

Wed Jul 11, 2018 8:01 pm

masi1157 wrote:
Seriously, where would you expect that extra tank volume to be? If not inside the cargo hold, which means a lot of lost volume around it, where else could it be but instead of part of the cargo hold?


Gruß, masi1157


I don't expect anything. I'm just thinking outside the box out loud.

If there isn't enough room inside the airframe for the amount of fuel they want to add, maybe look outside the airframe. Air forces have been using external fuel stores for about a century, for the very reason of lack of internal storage space. In that time, they have devised some pretty clever, relatively light and aerodynamic packages.

https://www.quora.com/How-badly-do-conf ... ce?share=1

So, while they can slightly reduce the aerodynamics in some cases (CFTs on the F-15 do not reduce it’s performance and nominally on the F-16)


https://navy-matters.blogspot.com/2016/ ... tanks.html

The tanks apparently produce a slight decrease in overall drag.

“We knew it was essentially a zero-drag configuration and, although there was no content in the tanks, we could measure drag through fuel flow. We actually saw a little better performance, as it improves transonic transition.” (1)

“The CFTs add no drag to the aircraft at subsonic speed; at transonic or supersonic speeds they produce less drag than a centerline fuel tank …” (4)
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