Re: McDonnell Douglas & Boeing To Merge

Date:         17 Dec 96 03:09:17 
From:         koala@earthlink.net (Randy Treadway)
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> If they can
>convince Congress that there should be a KC-11, so much the better.
>(I have no idea if there have ever been any serious discussions of a
>tanker version of the MD-11.)

Discussions, yes- serious, probably not.
There is more of a market worldwide for conversion of existing
DC-10 (or perhaps someday MD-11) airframes to tanker versions.
That's what McD-D is doing right now under contract for the
Dutch Air Force.  Three-engined wide bodies like DC-10s,
MD-11s and L1011s make nice wing pod refuelers because
pods can be mounted outboard of wing engines without
turbulence which a four-engined plane like 747 would
generate.  For boom refueling, high exhaust location of
DC-10/MD-11 center engine is better than through-the-tail
exhaust of L1011- too much wake turbulence.
Also, most L1011 airframes worldwide are now racking up
too high hours to be worth much in the retrofit arena.
There have also been discussions about KC-17's- but again
not that seriously.  As far as the U.S. is concerned, there's just
not a big gap in the USAF for their air refueling needs- they're
doing pretty well with their existing mix of KC-135's and KC-10's.
There is a very serious proposal just submitted to Great Britain
for C-17's because the RAF has soured on European Large
Transport Aircraft project and thinks they have a good case
for more immediate procurement to meet their worldwide
Quick Response needs.  They may want C-17s with
underwing refueling pods (drogue chute type like C-130's use),
although they have retrofitted a bunch of L1011's for that
role not too long ago.
Within McD-D, there has been some internal strife the last
couple of years between the Military Transport A/C division
and the Douglas A/C division over pushing MD-17 vs
MD-11.  Looks now like MD-17 will definitely get the marketing
nod from Boeing, and *may have* got the go-ahead anyway
even without the merger.  Only real market competitor
worldwide is the Antonov An124, although potential sales
may be limited to a couple of dozen.  Still, the USAF would like
to see that because of C-17 reopener clauses which allow them
to share in production rate savings if MD-17 sales happen.
McDonnell Douglas MTA saw in the next five years potential
for serious bids to replace Air Force C-9As (Medivac equipped
DC-9s with cargo door) as well as Navy C-9Bs (virtually off-the-shelf
DC-9s).  A little further down the road was replacement of
Air Force Andrews AFB 'exec fleet' C-9s used by State Dept
and other gov't. pooh-bahs.  Likely airframe was MD-90 series.  That
potential will probably now be seriously questioned given Boeing's
likely push of their 737 for those short-haul military roles.
Note: British C-17 sale is *not* a MD-17 version, but a
straight U.S. C-17 FMS sale, probably via USAF contract
with McD-D/Boeing..

Randy
McDonnell Douglas- MTA- Long Beach
(*opinions are my own and not those of McDonnell Douglas
<or Boeing!!> )