Re: Fracturing the Pacific

Date:         28 Aug 97 22:33:33 
From:         kls@ohare.Chicago.COM (Karl Swartz)
Organization: Chicago Software Works, Menlo Park, California
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In article <airliners.1997.1959@ohare.Chicago.COM>, lstone@wwa.com (Larry Stone) wrote:>In article <airliners.1997.1873@ohare.Chicago.COM>, m@bang.org wrote:
>>JFK-SIN is long enough that the B777-200IGW just cannot fly it nonstop, and
>>an aircraft cannot hold the route captive. The JFK-SIN flight would need to
>>depart prior to the arrival of the SIN-JFK flight in order to have reasonable
>>arrival and departure times at SIN.
>
>Don't forget that airplanes have maintenance rquirements so scheduling a
>route to hold one plane captive makes little sense if it doesn't allow
>time for needed maintenance.
>
>At least at UA, I believe a 747 needs a #3 service, essentially an
>overnight check, every 45 flight hours ...
>(I believe a #3 service can be done during the 6 hours
>or so our planes overnight in SIN - an A or a B check can't).

Back in March, I did some back-of-the-(virtual)-envelope analysis of
really long thin routes in private e-mail.  That was looking at the
market viability of double daily flights with smaller planes, assuming
that it's only interesting to do so if you can reasonably schedule the
flights at different times.  (Otherwise, why not use one big plane?)
I was also just looking at ORD/JFK-HKG, wondering if it would make
sense to replace UA's 747-400 flight with smaller aircraft.

Here's the original version with some minor editing:

United already has a significant presence in Hong Kong.  Expansion is
plausible since it's one of the few Asian cities outside Japan with
the local business market to support a decent hub, but slots at Kai
Tak and distance from the eastern half of North America are problems.
Chek Lap Kok will eliminate the slot problem, and new aircraft will
eliminate the range issue.

Given planes with the range, year-round ORD-HKG plus JFK-HKG would
make sense.  Would the departure and arrival times work to allow two
daily hubs?  Let's see ... this was the schedule for UA 895/896:

  896 HKG  940a ORD 1140a   (Mon,Thu,Sat departures)
  895 ORD  345p HKG  840p+1 (Tue,Thu,Sat departures - Thu 50 min later)
      HKG  RON

*** RON means Remain OverNight -- 13 hours should permit even the
    monthly B check.

The 1997 schedule looks like this:

  896 HKG  805a ORD  929a   (Mon,Thu,Sat departures; 14:24 block time)
  895 ORD  125p HKG  615p+1 (Tue,Thu,Sat departures; 15:50 block time)

For a second flight, you could do something like this:

      ORD  935a HKG  240p+1 (gets feed from morning bank, in for dinner)
      HKG  600p ORD  800p   (day in HKG, feeds late ORD bank)
      ORD  RON

JFK is ~45 minutes more flying time (another 245 nm), and there's a
one hour time zone difference.

      JFK 1000a HKG  250p+1
      HKG  610p JFK  755p
      JFK  RON

Those look remarkably appealing, at least if you can sleep on planes
(don't look at me!), and nicely complement the times of the other
non-stops.  Seems entirely reasonable to do 2x daily with smaller
aircraft.

With times like these, it might also make sense to do two hubs per day
at HKG, with semi-dedicated aircraft.  Much more sense than with just
one hub, as UA originally tried at LHR (and later CDG).

***

That's the end of the stuff from March.  Now, what about JFK-SIN?
It's 1274 nm further than JFK-HKG -- roughly four more hours block
time.  Same time zone.  Right now, UA's best offering is JFK-NRT-SIN
leaving at 115p, arriving 1145p the next day.  Going the other way,
another NRT connection allows an 800a departure, arriving 455p the
same afternoon.

Overnight non-stops JFK-SIN and return provide an alternative for
those who can sleep on planes and allow dinner in SIN and a full
day in New York.  With only minor changes to the ORD/JFK-HKG schedule
suggested above, a rotation can be created which accomodates all of
these flights and the maintenance requirements, without "wasting" the
equipment on routes where a less capable aircraft would work.

Day  Depart     Arrive    Block Ground  Note
--- --------- ----------- ----- ------  ----
 1+ JFK  805a SIN  455p+1 20:50   4:45  arrive SIN for dinner
 2+ SIN  940p JFK  525a+1 19:45   6:00  Service #3 (barely)
 3+ JFK 1125a HKG  415p+1 16:50   1:45  still in time for dinner; quick turn
 4  HKG  600p ORD  800p   15:00  13:35  Service #3 or A/B check
 5+ ORD  935a HKG  240p+1 16:05   3:15  feed from morning westbound hub
 6  HKG  545p JFK  930p   15:45  10:25  Service #3

Moving JFK-SIN to an evening departure provides a different, maybe
better schedule.  An extra aircraft allows the addition of a SIN-HKG
flight that feeds HKG-ORD/JFK (and a similar reverse), providing
useful connections, and adding the flexibility to schedule SIN-JFK at
a more appealing time.  The rotation now cycles in seven days, which
would obviously work better if the flights aren't daily.  Enough time
is available at each service opportunity for an A/B check if needed

Day  Depart     Arrive    Block Ground  Note
--- --------- ----------- ----- ------  ----
 1+ JFK 1025p SIN  715a+2 20:50   5:15  dinner in NYC; breakfast in SIN
 3  SIN 1230p HKG  415p    3:45   1:45  feeds ORD/JFK
 3  HKG  600p ORD  800p   15:00  13:45  feeds late hub
 4+ ORD  945a HKG  250p+1 16:05   2:55  feed from morning hub
 5  HKG  545p JFK  930p   15:45  12:55  full day in HKG
 6+ JFK 1025a HKG  315p+1 16:50   1:40  earlier to meet HKG-SIN
 7  HKG  455p SIN  830p    3:35   2:20  feed from ORD/JFK
 7+ SIN 1050p JFK  635a+1 19:45  15:50  better time; long layover now

This schedule seems to have a lot of extra layover time, but it's
no worse than UA's rotations for the 747-400s currently flying
ORD/JFK-NRT.

--
Karl Swartz	|Home	kls@chicago.com
		|Work	kls@netapp.com
		|WWW	http://www.chicago.com/~kls/
Moderator of sci.aeronautics.airliners -- Unix/network work pays the bills