July 2013 Archives

Going Hollywood

There’s no doubt that the American Airlines 777-300ER is gorgeous. But we had no idea it would be going Hollywood on us.

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Meet Tripp, one of the talking airplanes in a new Disney movie.

The upcoming animated 3D movie Disney’s “Planes” includes a cameo from a talking airplane named Tripp—inspired in part by American’s 777-300ER. Tripp is decked out in the airline’s new logo and tail livery in red, white and blue.

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Here’s the real thing— an American Airlines 777-300ER.

The movie debuts this Friday, August 2 in front of aviation fans who’ve gathered for EAA AirVenture Oshkosh— one week before opening in theaters nationwide. We look forward to getting a glimpse of Tripp on the big screen! You can check out a commercial featuring Tripp below, as well as the movie trailer.

ELT inspections

As most of you know, we sent out instructions to our 787 customers earlier this month giving them information on how to either inspect or remove the Honeywell Emergency Locator Transmitter (ELT) on their airplanes.

Today, Boeing is asking specific operators of 717, Next-Generation 737, 747-400, 767 and 777 airplanes to also inspect aircraft with the Honeywell fixed ELT. We’re taking this action following the U.K. Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) Special Bulletin, which recommended that airplane models with fixed Honeywell ELTs be inspected. The purpose of these inspections to is gather data to support potential rulemaking by regulators.

It is important to note that Honeywell ELTs have been deployed on approximately 20 aircraft models— including Boeing, Airbus and numerous business aviation aircraft.

We’ll be working closely with our customers in the coming days. As always, the safety of passengers and crew members who fly aboard Boeing airplanes is our highest priority.

In the still of the night

While most of you were sleeping Friday night, a gorgeous sight emerged from one of our paint hangars in Everett. The first ever 787-9 is now sporting a brand new livery.

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This refreshed look began with the 747-8 and evolved with the 737 MAX. The new livery retains many of the features of the original 787-8 livery, while adding a number on the tail.

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We’re on track to roll out and fly the 787-9, currently in final production, in late summer. First delivery to launch customer Air New Zealand is set for mid-2014. Thanks to Boeing photographer Gail Hanusa for staying up late to capture these images— in the still of the night.

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Second quarter reflections

It’s no secret that Boeing faced some challenges in the second quarter of this year. But thanks to a true team effort across the entire company, we came out on the other side even stronger.

Today, we reported second quarter core earnings per share (non-GAAP) increased 13 percent to $1.67, driven by strong performance across the company’s businesses. Core earnings per share guidance increased to between $6.20 and $6.40. Revenue increased 9 percent to $21.8 billion reflecting higher deliveries on the 787 and 737 programs.

Commercial Airplanes booked 481 net orders during the quarter. Backlog remains strong with nearly 4,800 airplanes valued at a record $339 billion. We now expect to deliver between 635 and 645 airplanes by the end of the year, with 787 deliveries expected to be greater than 60.

As I always do, I want to share some of the accomplishments made across our programs during the second quarter. Here they are in photos—and a must-see video.

737

•Program delivers 116 airplanes - a record for a single quarter.

•Boeing and Southwest Airlines announce the launch of the 737 MAX 7.

•First delivery of the 737 MAX 8 - to launch customer Southwest Airlines - is moved up one quarter, to the third quarter 2017.

•In Boeing’s largest-ever airplane order from a European airline, Ryanair finalizes an order for 175 Next-Generation 737-800 airplanes.

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Boeing Commercial Airplanes President & CEO Ray Conner greets Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary at the Paris Air Show.

•Turkish Airlines finalizes its largest order for Boeing airplanes: 40 737 MAX 8s, 10 737 MAX 9s and 20 Next-Generation 737-800s. The order includes options for an additional 25 737 MAX 8s.

•Aircraft lesser CIT Aerospace orders 30 737 MAX 8s.

•CFM International’s LEAP-1B engine for the 737 MAX passes “engine design freeze,” a milestone that allows CFM engineers to begin releasing design drawings for the engine.

747

•Lufthansa, launch customer for the 747-8 Intercontinental, opens new Intercontinental routes from Frankfurt to Hong Kong and Miami.

•Certification flight testing begins on a package of 747 performance improvements designed to improve fuel efficiency by 1.8 percent and upgrade the flight management computer.

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This 747-8 Intercontinental takes to the skies to start testing a performance improvement package.

•Korean Air announces its intention to buy five 747-8 Intercontinentals.

•Boeing delivers its 50th 747-8 - an Intercontinental - to Lufthansa, launch customer for the passenger version.

•Six 747s are delivered in the quarter.

767

•Assembly begins on the KC-46A aerial refueling tanker as the 767 line in Everett loads the first wing spar.

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A huge moment as the spar load begins for the KC-46A.

•US Air Force gives the go-ahead for critical design review of the KC-46A tanker to take place in July, noting that Boeing remains on track to complete all contractual entrance requirements prior to the review and meet contractual requirements for completing the review by the fourth quarter.

•A total of eight 767s are delivered during the second quarter.

777

•Operating at a 100-per-year production rate, the program delivers its 1,100th airplane, a freighter, to Etihad Airways.

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Another milestone for the 777 program with its 1,100th delivery.

•Korean Air agrees to buy six 777-300ERs.

•Qatar Airways announces it will buy nine 777-300ERs, including two airplanes previously attributed to an unidentified customer.

•Program delivers 23 airplanes and books 10 net orders.

787

•Regulatory agencies worldwide approve an enhanced battery system, paving the way for the Dreamliner’s return to service. More than 300 Aircraft on Ground personnel from CAS and Airplane Programs work to retrofit existing airplanes.

•Boeing launches the 787-10, with 102 orders and commitments from five customers.

•A 787 in Air India livery performs daily aerial displays at the Paris Air Show - a first for the Dreamliner. A second 787, owned by Qatar Airways, is on static display.

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A 787 for Air India looked gorgeous in the flying display at Paris.

•787-9 begins final assembly in Everett. The first airplanes are progressing through final assembly and production remains on track for first delivery to Air New Zealand in mid-2014.

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The 787-9 is sporting a cool new livery.

•Boeing delivers the first 787s to China Southern, British Airways, Thomson Airways and International Lease Finance Corporation (for operation by Norwegian).

•The 100th Dreamliner is produced.

•40 net orders are booked, and 16 airplanes are delivered in the quarter.

Commercial Aviation Services

•Aeroflot takes delivery of its fourth 777-300ER equipped with Airplane Health Management, which uses real-time data to improve maintenance and operational efficiency and reduce flight schedule interruptions.

•Boeing Flight Services announces it will add and reposition flight training devices within its global network, adding new capabilities and better customer support for training on Next-Generation 737, 777 and 787 airplanes.

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Some of the simulators we use for flight training.

•Boeing Shanghai wins a contract to convert three passenger 737-400s to freighters for Yangtze River Express/Hainan Airlines to support growing Chinese demand for air freight.

•Boeing wins US regulatory approval to provide 787 customers with advanced navigation procedures designed to increase fuel and emissions efficiency and reduce airport congestion.

Firming things up

When we announced the acceleration of the 737 MAX delivery schedule during the Paris Air Show, I think a lot of people took notice of just how much progress we’re making on the program. Fast forward to today and you can see that progress continues.

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We’ve just announced firm configuration for the 737 MAX 8. That means we’ve defined the design requirements that will make the MAX the most fuel-efficient airplane in the single-aisle market. The configuration includes new LEAP-1B engines from CFM International, a redesigned tail cone and Advanced Technology Winglets.

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The airplane will also feature upgrades to the flight deck displays, an electronic bleed air system and fly-by-wire spoiler flight controls. Final assembly of the 737 MAX 8 is scheduled to begin in 2015 with first delivery scheduled for the third quarter of 2017.

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Congratulations to the team in Renton on this milestone and for accumulating 1,495 MAX orders to date. I hope you enjoyed all of these new images of the MAX 8 and the entire MAX family. And in case you haven’t seen it yet, there’s a great video we put together that really showcases everything great about the MAX. Check it out below.

Showing our LUV for Southwest

In a way, the Boeing 737 and Southwest Airlines have grown up together. So it was a special treat to have Southwest CEO Gary Kelly and the airline’s Board of Directors visit our Renton factory earlier this week.

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600 Boeing employees gathered to show their appreciation for Southwest during an event in Renton this week.

The group was treated to a VIP tour of the factory that has assembled and delivered 624 737s for the carrier - more than any other airline.

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Southwest Airlines Chairman, President, and CEO Gary Kelly speaks to Boeing employees.

“It is a pleasure to be here to thank all of you,” Kelly told 737 employees. “We strive to provide our customers with friendly, reliable and low-cost air travel. Boeing makes that commitment possible.”

Southwest isn’t just our biggest 737 customer. They’re also a valued partner helping launch five models of the 737, including the 737-300, -500, and -700, plus two models of the 737 MAX, the MAX 7 and MAX 8. They currently have 317 unfilled orders for the 737, 180 of those being for the MAX.

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Boeing presented Southwest with a banner signed by 737 employees.

Thanks to Southwest for paying a visit—and for keeping us so busy!

AAIB bulletin on 787 incident at Heathrow

Today, the UK Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) issued a special bulletin on last week’s 787 incident at Heathrow Airport. The bulletin makes two recommendations in regards to the Emergency Locator Transmitter (ELT). Boeing supports those recommendations and we’re working proactively with the regulatory authorities in taking appropriate action. We’re also coordinating with our customers, suppliers, and other commercial airplane manufacturers.

I know some of you are interested in how the ELT works. While ELTs aren’t necessary for normal airplane operations, their primary purpose is to alert and guide rescue crews to the location of an airplane in the event of an accident. They are found in airplanes across the industry as available options selected by airlines.

An ELT is powered via its own battery with no help from the airplane. The ELT interfaces with the airplane via wires connected to the flight deck so that the pilot can activate the transmitter if necessary. Turning on the transmitter doesn’t transfer any power to the unit. There is a co-ax cable from the unit that connects to the antenna, located on top of the fuselage. If an ELT needs to be removed, it is a straightforward process that takes about one hour.

I wanted to emphasize again that the 787 fleet continues to fly as normal. We’ve delivered 68 of the airplanes to 13 customers. As of last week, the fleet had accumulated more than 23,000 revenue flight hours on 128 different routes since returning to service in late April. We’re confident the 787 is a safe airplane and we stand behind it.

Our team will continue working closely with investigators and regulators as the process continues, while making sure our customers have everything they need. We put the safety of passengers and crew at the top of our list and stand ready to take immediate action.

Update on 787 incident at Heathrow

While it may be several days before investigators provide more information on last week’s 787 incident at Heathrow Airport, I did want to update you on where things stand.

Our highest priority is the safety of everyone who flies on a Boeing airplane. That’s why we’re working with authorities to understand exactly what happened—and why.

The UK Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) is leading this investigation, and Boeing is participating as an advisor. We have a team on the ground in London working in support of the investigative authorities. Let me say that we greatly appreciate the efforts and dedication of the investigators in determining the cause.

The AAIB says there was extensive heat damage in the upper portion of the rear fuselage of the airplane in question. But they noted the damage is away from where the APU (Auxiliary Power Unit) batteries are located. At this stage, the AAIB says there’s no evidence of a direct causal relationship.

While the investigation continues, the 787 fleet is flying as normal. We’re confident the 787 is a safe airplane and we stand behind its overall integrity. As we learn more in the coming days, we’ll work with the authorities to share it with you.

Red, white and blue

I saw a lot of red, white and blue yesterday—even though I spent the Fourth of July in London instead of the States. Those colors were in the form of the British Airways livery.

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British Airways flight attendants line up for a chance to go on board one of the airline’s first 787s.

The airline officially welcomed the 787 to its fleet, as well as the A380, during an event for employees and the media. It was a great event and I was excited to be a part of it.

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Staff of British Airways pose in front of a 747.

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Here’s me being interviewed at the British Airways event— alongide Sir Roger Bone, President Boeing UK.

BA has now taken delivery of two 787s. In addition to flying the airplane into popular destinations, the airline says it will also use its Dreamliners to start service into untapped markets across the world. That’s the beauty of the 787—allowing our customers to open new routes.

Meanwhile, Hainan Airlines took delivery of its first 787 Dreamliner, with nine more to come. The airplane flew away from our delivery center in North Charleston earlier today.

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The first 787 for Hainan Airlines flies away from North Charleston today. Alan Marts photo.

Hainan says the 787 will allow it to open new routes from Beijing to North America and provide our unique ‘Eastern-style’ five-star in-flight experience for global passengers. Congratulations to both British Airways and Hainan Airlines as they celebrate with the 787.

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Staying busy

It’s a good thing we built new delivery centers in Everett and North Charleston—because our customers are keeping us pretty busy. We delivered a whopping 169 airplanes in the second quarter of this year. That’s the most we’ve delivered in a single quarter since 1998.

The 737 program set an all-time record for most deliveries in a single quarter with 116. And 16 of our deliveries in the second quarter were 787s—some of which were first deliveries for new customers.

Obviously, our production rate increases are driving the spike in deliveries across the board. Our 737 rate from 35 to 38 per month in the second quarter, our 777 rate went from 7 to 8.3 in the first quarter and our 787 rate went from 5 to 7 per month in the second quarter. We’re executing our rate breaks just as planned.

We’re excited to put more and more airplanes into the hands of our customers. In fact, I’m currently in London to celebrate with British Airways as they officially welcome two 787s to their fleet. I’ll share some of the highlights and photos with you later in the week.

More 787 firsts

We celebrated several “firsts” during our latest 787 delivery for International Lease Finance Corporation (ILFC) and Norwegian. The airplane was the first 787 delivered to ILFC and the first for its lessee, Norwegian, which will operate the airplane.

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The reveal of the ILFC and Norwegian’s first 787 Dreamliner at a delivery ceremony in Everett. Katie Lomax photo.

The delivery to ILFC builds on Boeing’s 40-year relationship with the Los Angeles-based leasing company, which is the largest 787 customer with 74 Dreamliners on order. Norwegian currently has eight 787s on order through lease agreements and direct deliveries. The carrier will use the 787s to service its new long-haul routes from Oslo and Stockholm to New York and Bangkok.

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The first 787 for ILFC and Norwegian takes flight.

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Photo by Chris Raezer.

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Photo by Chris Raezer.

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Photo by Chris Raezer.

Congrats to our friends at ILFC and Norwegian. The airplane is a beauty!

 

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