Friday, January 8, 2010

Boeing May Not Build the 787-3

Earlier today All Nippon Airways announced the conversion of their 787-3 order to the 787-8 version quite possibly ending any development of that version. Both JAL and ANA had ordered that version of the 787 (ANA ordered 30 while JAL had ordered 13).

This version was designed for highly traffic but short ranged routes which are routes that are both Japanese airlines fly. The aircraft was to carry 330 passengers on distances of less than 3,000 miles and would use the base 787-8 design but with winglets instead of the raked wingtip on both the -8 and -9 versions of the 787.

This conversion is ideal for Boeing for a few reasons:

1) Boeing doesn't lose 787 orders
2) By effectively killing the 787-3, Boeing saves substantial money on R&D for this aircraft. If there is substantial interest in this version in could resurrected later. By then both Boeing, it suppliers and engine makers and its customers would have had substantial data on the 787 performance to design an effective high volume, short range twin aisle in the 787.

Saj Ahmad wrote an excellent piece on the 787-3 order conversion and what it means.

All Nippon Airways Swaps 787 Orders

Flightblogger's posting on the 787-3

ANA closes the order book on the 787-3

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