ZapZac1027 wrote:Hey again. Recently I was thinking that with modern technology and powerful engines like the GE90 and GE9X, can the 747-8 be powered by three engines? Although it's definitely not practical to convert it into a trijet because of a big redesign of the wings and vertical stabilizer, do three engines have enough thrust to power a 747-8?
I guess it could but would it be worth it? No. Be it to convert or design from the begining a 748-like aircraft with a tail engine means adding lots of structure to support the added tail weight and thrust coming form the engine you want to install there. Also, on the maintenance side, it's less easy and more costly to maintain a tail engine.
pillowtester wrote:I feel like I'm seeing so many absurd hypotheticals lately. The trijet layout disappeared in the 90s because it's a maintenance headache. It will never come back, and we shouldn't want it to.
If you want to get excited about the future, let's talk about the incredible engineering feats that go into reducing the industry's carbon footprint (one of the worst) — and further out, speculate about what post-fossil fuel aviation might look like?
PatrickZ80 wrote:And is a third engine really needed? I suppose not. Engines with near double the power of an existing 747-8 engine can be developed. That would make the 747-8 just as powerful on two of those engines than it is on 4 of it's current engines. If you'd convert it into a twin like the A340 - A330 conversion, this would also mean a lot of the internal wing structure that is needed to support the weight of the outer engines can be removed. That would reduce weight on the aircraft.
PatrickZ80 wrote:It would be easier to convert the 747-8 into a twin than into a tri-jet. That's essentially the idea of the A330 and A340, where except for the engines it's nearly the same aircraft. An A340 could be converted into an A330 by simply removing the outer engines and replacing the inner ones with larger more powerful ones (and of course a lot of other small modifications). The same could be done with the 747-8.
However adding a third engine in the center would cause a giant problem. If it needs to be mounted on the tail, the whole structure would need to be reinforced in order to support the weight of that engine. Because of that, the wings would need to be re-aligned placing them further to the rear of the fuselage. Such huge adaptions would basically make it a whole new aircraft.
And is a third engine really needed? I suppose not. Engines with near double the power of an existing 747-8 engine can be developed. That would make the 747-8 just as powerful on two of those engines than it is on 4 of it's current engines. If you'd convert it into a twin like the A340 - A330 conversion, this would also mean a lot of the internal wing structure that is needed to support the weight of the outer engines can be removed. That would reduce weight on the aircraft.
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