Odds and Ends: Refusing to fly 787; 787 AD was wrong; KC-46A cost analysis; Battery fix certification?
Refusing to fly 787: This is a stunning survey by the website Travel Insider: 32% of frequent fliers will refuse to fly the 787 even after it is fixed for the first year or two and another third would prefer to avoid the 787. The numbers are huge. We knew there would be some who refused to fly the plane–the same thing happened to the McDonnell Douglas DC-10 after it was grounded in 1979–but the numbers are stunning.
We also recognize that we’re still at the height of the press coverage of the still-grounded aircraft. Once it returns to service, it will be interesting to see results if the survey were re-run.
There was no doubt Boeing received a black eye over the grounding. It now appears both eyes are blackened.
FAA 787 AD was wrong: The FAA should have pulled the 787 type certificate, argues a former member of the National Transportation Board.
KC-46A Costs: The Blog by Javier (Irastorza Mediavilla) has a detailed analysis of the contract price performance so far of the Boeing KC-46A. although the blog is mostly about his personal activities, Javier works for Airbus Military on the A400M program. (Note: he does not speak for nor represent Airbus through his blog). This might make some of his aerospace analysis suspect in the minds of some, but we have found his commentaries and analysis to be well researched and thought out. And he has a good sense of humor.
FAA reliance on OEMs: Reuters has a detailed piece about the Federal Aviation Administration’s reliance on OEMs (and specifically Boeing) in aircraft development, all triggered of course by the 787 issues. We wrote about this relationship shortly after the now-infamous joint press conference by the FAA and Boeing in which the FAA, Boeing and the Department of Transportation said the 787 was safe.
Re-certifying the battery fix: We keep getting told whatever Boeing does to fix the battery issue will require re-certification of the battery and/or system–that it will be more than simply complying with the Airworthiness Directive. This, of course, would add time to getting the 787 back into revenue service. Does anyone have some insight on this?
“Of all time:” Airbus Tweeted last Friday (referring to its website): The A320 (soon to be made in Mobile) is undisputed best selling aircraft product line of all time.” (Emphasis added.)
We don’t think so. “Of all time”? “Aircraft product line”? 737 All Series 10,501. A320 family: 9,142. DC-3/C-47/Others under license: 16,079.
We know what Airbus was trying to say: It’s A320 family vs the equivalent technology Boeing 737NG and 737 MAX, for which through January sold 7,369. But the claim, as worded, just isn’t so.
Furthermore, the A320 first entered service in 1988 and the 737NG in 1994. A true comparison needs to knock six years of sales off the A320.
To quote the controversy of a recent Washington (DC) tempest in a teapot, “[We] know [Airbus] may not believe this, but as a friend, [we] think [Airbus] will regret staking out that claim.”