New Tri-Jets

Date:         16 Jun 97 21:35:40 
From:         "P. Wezeman" <>
Organization: The University of Iowa
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   As several people have pointed out, the new large turbofans used on the
Boeing 777 and Airbus A330 would allow the construction of a three engine
airliner with as much thrust as present B747s. From what I read, three
large engines cost less to operate and maintain than four smaller engines
of the same total thrust. Would a 747 sized tri-jet in fact cost less to
operate, or would the savings from the engines be offset by other factors
such as a heavier wing structure to carry the weight of one engine at the
center of the span? Has either McDonnell Douglas, Boeing, or Airbus looked
at such a plane? From artists' conceptions, it looked like the proposed
MD-12 did not use the larger engines.
   Would airlines or air cargo haulers find such a plane attractive?
   Presuming there was a market for it, could a large tri-jet be derived
from the Boeing 777 by extending the fuselage forward enough to balance
the weight of the third engine and increasing the size of the vertical
tail to compensate for the increased fuselage area forward? Of course,
this would be in addition to the changes needed for the increased weight
and payload allowed by the third engine.

                        Peter Wezeman, anti-social Darwinist

                             "Carpe Cyprinidae"