Re: 747-400 mods (was: 737-plus?)

From: (Terrell D. Drinkard)
Organization: Boeing
Date:         10 Jul 93 02:01:40 PDT
References:   1 2 3
Followups:    1
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In article <airliners.1993.505@ohare.Chicago.COM> (John Eyles) writes:
>In article <airliners.1993.498@ohare.Chicago.COM> kls@ohare.Chicago.COM (Karl Swartz) writes:
>>Meanwhile, the 747-400 is receiving modifications including a
>>redesigned composite dorsal fin fairing and fuel distribution system
>>which will allow a 2,000 lb increas in MTOW.  The changes will be
>>integrated into new production 747-400s and will be available as a
>>retrofit for existing 747-400s.
>Can this be for real ?
>I know that in the airline industry, weight is money; but can this be worth
>the trouble ?
>It allows another 10 or so pax, or another ton of fuel.  I assume (maybe
>incorrectly) that number of passengers is limited more by seating space
>than MTOW, so we're talking another ton of fuel.

For short missions (under 3,000 miles or so) you are correct, it doesn't
really matter.  One runs into problems at the longer ranges with high load
factors (ie, lots of bodies in those seats).  That extra weight can make
the difference in whether the airplane can be directly dispatched to a
destination, or must use redispatch procedures.  It can make the difference
in whether the flight must be diverted or can go straight in (winds).  But
add the extra weight and combine it with new electronics and software that
give the airplane the ability to seek out the most efficient route, and
you've added significant capability to the airplane for a modest

You might also keep in mind that one seat can add several million dollars
in revenue to an airline.

>I believe these babies consume about 10 tons of fuel an hour at cruise,
>so we're talking 6 more minutes of flight or about 50 nm.
>How much can this retrofit cost and be worth it ?

Depends on who you are.  Literally.  :-)

"Anyone who thinks they can hold the company responsible for what I say has
more lawyers than sense."