Re: Airbus threatens to sue Boeing

From:         faurecm@halcyon.com (C. Marin Faure)
Organization: Northwest Nexus Inc.
Date:         16 Feb 96 04:33:30 
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In article <airliners.1996.182@ohare.Chicago.COM>, Chuanga@cris.com (H
Andrew Chuang) wrote:

> Last year, I came across an article in the Far Eastern Economic Review on
> the Airbus/Boeing competition.  It was reported in the article that Boeing
> claimed the B777 would shave off as much as an hour off A340's flying time
> on long-haul trip.  A similar claim was made by one of the netters from
> Boeing in sci.aeronautics.airliners but was later disputed by a Cathay
> Pacific pilot.
>
> Today, there is an article saying that Airbus is threatening to sue Boeing
> if Boeing does not stop using this false information (that the A330/340
> can only cruise at 0.78 Mach).  Airbus says that some early A340
> operators used the lower speed to increase either payload or range.
> However, this sounds to me that the A330/340 must have significant
> performance shortfalls.

As of a year ago, a flight from Narita to Heathrow took almost an hour
longer in a Virgin A-340 than the same flight on a British Airways
747-400.  There's no dispute that the A-340 can cruise faster than 0.78
Mach.  The problem is that the drag apparently increases significantly due
to the A-340's outboard engine nacelle-pylon design, so fuel consumption
goes up.  The only way to reduce fuel consumption so as to be able to
carry the desired payload on a very long range flight is to reduce the
cruise speed, thus reducing the parasite drag of the nacelle-pylon.  I
believe this is the basis of the Boeing statement about the relative
cruise speeds of the A-340 and the 777.

C. Marin Faure
author, Flying A Floatplane