Category Archives: Boeing

The Boeing 747 has flown the equivalent of 78% of the world’s population

As we approach the 50th anniversary of the first flight of the Boeing 747 on February 9:

From Boeing on social media:

Another reason to love the 747! It has flown more than 5.9 billion people – the equivalent of 78% of the world’s population.

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Boeing reports record 2018 results and provides 2019 guidance

Fourth Quarter 2018

  • Record revenue of $28.3 billion and record operating profit of $4.2 billion driven by higher volume
  • Record GAAP EPS of $5.93 and record core EPS (non-GAAP)* of $5.48 on strong performance

Full-Year 2018

  • Record revenue of $101.1 billion reflecting strong growth across the portfolio
  • Record GAAP EPS of $17.85 and record core EPS (non-GAAP)* of $16.01 driven by solid execution
  • Record operating cash flow of $15.3 billion; repurchased 26.1 million shares for $9.0 billion
  • Total backlog remains robust at $490 billion, including nearly 5,900 commercial airplanes
  • Cash and marketable securities of $8.6 billion provide strong liquidity

Outlook for 2019

  • Revenue guidance of between $109.5 and $111.5 billion reflects higher volume across all businesses
  • GAAP EPS of between $21.90 and $22.10; core EPS (non-GAAP)* of between $19.90 and $20.10
  • Operating cash flow expected to increase to between $17.0 and $17.5 billion

 

Table 1. Summary Financial Results

Fourth Quarter

Full Year

(Dollars in Millions, except per share data)

2018

2017

Change

2018

2017

Change

Revenues

$28,341

$24,770

14%

$101,127

$94,005

8%

GAAP

Earnings From Operations

$4,175

$2,978

40%

$11,987

$10,344

16%

Operating Margin

14.7%

12.0%

2.7 Pts

11.9%

11.0%

0.9 Pts

Net Earnings

$3,424

$3,320

3%

$10,460

$8,458

24%

Earnings Per Share

$5.93

$5.49

8%

$17.85

$13.85

29%

Operating Cash Flow

$2,947

$2,903

2%

$15,322

$13,346

15%

Non-GAAP*

Core Operating Earnings

$3,867

$2,589

49%

$10,660

$8,906

20%

Core Operating Margin

13.6%

10.5%

3.1 Pts

10.5%

9.5%

1.0 Pts

Core Earnings Per Share

$5.48

$5.07

8%

$16.01

$12.33

30%

*Non-GAAP measure; complete definitions of Boeing’s non-GAAP measures are on page 6, “Non-GAAP Measures Disclosures.”    

The Boeing Company reported fourth-quarter revenue of $28.3 billion, GAAP earnings per share of $5.93 and core earnings per share (non-GAAP)* of $5.48, all company records. These results reflect record commercial deliveries, higher defense and services volume and strong performance which outweighed favorable tax impacts recorded in the fourth quarter of 2017 (Table 1). Boeing generated operating cash flow of $2.9 billion, repurchased 1.6 million shares for $0.6 billion, paid $1.0 billion of dividends and completed the acquisition of KLX.

Revenue was a record $101.1 billion for the full year reflecting higher commercial deliveries and increased volume across the company. Records for GAAP earnings per share of $17.85 and core earnings per share (non-GAAP)* of $16.01 were driven by higher volume, improved mix and solid execution.

“Across the enterprise our team delivered strong core operating performance and customer focus, driving record revenues, earnings and cash flow and further extending our global aerospace industry leadership in 2018,” said Boeing Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Dennis Muilenburg. “Our financial performance provided a firm platform to further invest in new growth businesses, innovation and future franchise programs, as well as in our people and enabling technologies. In the last 5 years, we have invested nearly $35 billion in key strategic areas of our business, all while increasing cash returns to shareholders.”

“Our One Boeing focus, clear strategies for growth, and leading positions in large and growing markets, give us confidence for continued strong performance, revenue expansion and solid execution across all three businesses, which is reflected in our 2019 guidance.”

“We remain focused on executing on our production and development programs as well as our growth strategy while driving further productivity, quality and safety improvements, investing in our team and creating more value and opportunity for our customers, shareholders and employees.”Commercial Airplanes fourth-quarter revenue increased to $17.3 billion reflecting higher deliveries and favorable mix (Table 4). Fourth-quarter operating margin increased to 15.6 percent, driven by higher 737 volume and strong operating performance on production programs, including higher 787 margins.

During the quarter, Commercial Airplanes delivered 238 airplanes, including the delivery of the 787th 787 Dreamliner and the first 737 MAX Boeing Business Jet. The 737 program delivered 111 MAX airplanes in the fourth quarter, including the first MAX delivery from the China Completion Center, and delivered 256 MAX airplanes in 2018.

The first 777X flight test airplane completed final body join and power-on, and the program remains on track for flight testing this year and first delivery in 2020.

Video: Boeing 777X cabin:

Commercial Airplanes booked 262 net orders during the quarter, valued at $16 billion. Backlog remains robust with nearly 5,900 airplanes valued at $412 billion.

Outlook

Effective in the first quarter of 2019, the Company is making a change to the accounting for military derivative aircraft. Revenues and costs associated with military derivative aircraft were previously reported in the Commercial Airplanes and Defense, Space & Security segments. Beginning in 2019, all revenues and costs associated with military derivative aircraft will be reported in the Defense, Space & Security segment. An additional exhibit is included on page 15 with restated 2018 results adjusted for the change in accounting for military derivative aircraft as well as the realignment of certain programs between Global Services and Defense, Space & Security. The Company has provided this comparable information in the exhibit and below to help investors understand the 2019 financial outlook (Table 8).

*Non-GAAP measure; complete definitions of Boeing’s non-GAAP measures are on page 6, “Non-GAAP Measures Disclosures.”

1 Continues to include intercompany deliveries related to military derivative aircraft

2 Approximately $1.1 billion of pension expense is expected to be allocated to the business segments

The Boeing 747 turns 50, the “Queen of the Skies”

On September 30, 1968 Boeing displayed to the public for the first time the first prototype of the Boeing 747-100 when it was rolled out of the new Paine Field facility at Everett, WA (above). Photo: Boeing.

The first flight was successfully conducted on February 9, 1969.

On January 15, 1970, Pat Nixon, the First Lady of the United States, christened Pan Am’s first Boeing 747-100.

The first Pan Am Boeing 747-100 entered revenue service on January 22, 1970, on the New York (JFK) – London (Heathrow) route. The flight had been scheduled for the previous evening on January 21, but engine overheating cancelled the originally scheduled inaugural flight.

Pan Am (1st) Boeing 747-121 N748PA (msn 19652) JFK (Bruce Drum). Image: 102101.

Above Copyright Photo: Pan Am (1st) Boeing 747-121 N748PA (msn 19652) JFK (Bruce Drum). Image: 102101.

Pan Am aircraft slide show:

Joe Sutter was recognized by Boeing as the “Father of the 747”. On his passing in 2016, Boeing issued this tribute:

We lost one of the giants of aerospace and a beloved member of the Boeing family. Joe Sutter, the “Father of the 747,” passed away at the age of 95.

Joe lived an amazing life and was an inspiration – not just to those of us at Boeing, but to the entire aerospace industry. He personified the ingenuity and passion for excellence that made Boeing airplanes synonymous with quality the world over.

Early in Joe’s career, he had a hand in many iconic commercial airplane projects, including the Dash 80, its cousin the 707 and the 737. But it was the 747 – the world’s first jumbo jet – that secured his place in history.

Joe led the engineering team that developed the 747 in the mid-1960s, opening up affordable international travel and helping connect the world. His team, along with thousands of other Boeing employees involved in the project, became known as the Incredibles for producing what was then the world’s largest airplane in record time – 29 months from conception to rollout. It remains a staggering achievement and a testament to Joe’s “incredible” determination.

Long after he retired, Joe remained very active within the company. He continued to serve as a consultant on the Commercial Airplanes Senior Advisory Group, and he was still a familiar sight to many of us working here. By then his hair was white and he moved a little slower, but he always had a twinkle in his eye, a sharp mind and an unwavering devotion to aerospace innovation and The Boeing Company. Fittingly, he was on hand to celebrate our centennial at the Founders Day weekend. He was one of a kind.

Joe was loved. He made a difference in the world. He made a difference to us. We will miss him and cherish our time with him.

Ray

Boeing issued this historical snapshot of the Boeing 747:

The 747 was the result of the work of some 50,000 Boeing people. Called “the Incredibles,” these were the construction workers, mechanics, engineers, secretaries and administrators who made aviation history by building the 747 — the largest civilian airplane in the world — in less than 16 months during the late 1960s.

The incentive for creating the giant 747 came from reductions in airfares, a surge in air-passenger traffic and increasingly crowded skies. Following the loss of the competition for a gigantic military transport, the C-5A, Boeing set out to develop a large advanced commercial airplane to take advantage of the high-bypass engine technology developed for the C-5A. The design philosophy behind the 747 was to develop a completely new plane, and other than the engines, the designers purposefully avoided using any hardware developed for the C-5.

The 747’s final design was offered in three configurations: all passenger, all cargo and a convertible passenger/freighter model. The freighter and convertible models loaded 8- by 8-foot (2.4- by 2.4-meter) cargo containers through the huge hinged nose.

The 747 was truly monumental in size. The massive airplane required construction of the 200 million-cubic-foot (5.6 million-cubic-meter) 747 assembly plant in Everett, Wash., the world’s largest building (by volume). The fuselage of the original 747 was 225 feet (68.5 meters) long; the tail as tall as a six-story building. Pressurized, it carried a ton of air. The cargo hold had room for 3,400 pieces of baggage and could be unloaded in seven minutes. The total wing area was larger than a basketball court. Yet, the entire global navigation system weighed less than a modern laptop computer.

Pilots prepared for the 747 at Boeing training school. The experience of taxiing such a large plane was acquired in a contraption called “Waddell’s Wagon,” named after Jack Waddell, the company’s chief test pilot. The pilot sat in a mockup of the 747 flight deck built atop three-story-high stilts on a moving truck. The pilot learned how to maneuver from such a height by directing the truck driver below him by radio.

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration later modified two 747-100s into Shuttle Carrier Aircraft. The next version, the 747-200, holds approximately 440 passengers and has a range of about 5,600 nautical miles (10,371 kilometers). In 1990, two 747-200Bs were modified to serve as Air Force One and replaced the VC-137s (707s) that served as the presidential airplane for nearly 30 years. The 747-300 has an extended upper deck and carries even more passengers than the -200.

Video: Boeing.

The 747-400 rolled out in 1988. Its wingspan is 212 feet (64 meters), and it has 6-foot-high (1.8-meter-high) “winglets” on the wingtips. The 747-400 also is produced as a freighter, as a combination freighter and passenger model, and as a special domestic version, without the winglets, for shorter range flights.

In August 1999, major assembly began on a militarized 747-400 Freighter to be used as a platform for the U.S. Air Force’s Airborne Laser (ABL) program. It rolled out on Oct. 27, 2006, and was eventually designated YAL-1. Boeing was the prime contractor for ABL, which was designed to provide a speed-of-light capability to destroy all classes of ballistic missiles in their boost phase of flight. Boeing provided the modified aircraft and the battle management system and is the overall systems integrator. ABL partners were Northrop Grumman, which supplied the chemical oxygen iodine, or COIL, high-energy laser associated lasers, and Lockheed Martin, which provided the nose-mounted turret in addition to the beam control/fire control system. On Feb. 11, 2010, the flying test bed destroyed a ballistic missile off the coast of Southern California. The program was canceled in 2011, and in 2012, YAL-1 was flown to the U.S. Air Force “bone yard” near Pima, Ariz., to be scrapped.

Another variant is the Dreamlifter — a specially modified 747-400 — that transports the large composite structures, including huge fuselage sections of the 787 Dreamliner, from partners around the world to Everett, Wash., and Charleston, S.C., for final assembly. The massive cargo is loaded and unloaded from a hinged rear fuselage. The last of the series four was delivered Feb. 16, 2010.

The longer range 747-400 airplanes (also known as 747-400ERs) were launched in late 2000. The 747-400ER (Extended Range) family is available in both passenger and freighter versions. The airplanes are the same size as current 747-400s and have a range of 7,670 nautical miles (14,205 kilometers) as opposed to the 747-400 range of 7,260 nautical miles (13,450 kilometers). It incorporates the strengthened -400 Freighter wing, strengthened body and landing gear, and an auxiliary fuel tank in the forward cargo hold, with an option for a second tank. When the 747-400ER’s full-range capability is not needed, operators can remove the tank (or tanks), freeing up additional space for cargo.

In November 2005, Boeing launched the 747-8 family — the 747-8 Intercontinental passenger airplane and the 747-8 Freighter. These airplanes incorporate innovative technologies from the 787 Dreamliner. In fact, the designation 747-8 was chosen to show the technology connection between the 787 Dreamliner and the new 747-8, including the General Electric GEnx-2B engines, raked wingtips and other improvements that allow for a 30 percent smaller noise footprint, 15 percent reduction in-service carbon emissions, better performance retention, lower weight, less fuel consumption, fewer parts and less maintenance.

The 747-8 Freighter first flew on February 8, 2010. The airplane is 250 feet, 2 inches (76.3 meters) long, which is 18 feet, 4 inches (5.6 meters) longer than the 747-400 Freighter. The stretch provides customers with 16 percent more revenue cargo volume compared with its predecessor. That translates to an additional four main-deck pallets and three lower hold pallets.

The passenger version, the Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental, serves the 400- to 500-seat market and took its first flight on March 20, 2011. The cabin’s sculpted ceilings, bigger overhead and side stowbins, a redesigned staircase and dynamic LED lighting all add to an overall more comfortable passenger experience. With 51 additional seats and 26 percent more revenue cargo volume than the 747-400, Boeing delivered the first 747-8 Intercontinental to an undisclosed Boeing Business Jet customer on Feb. 28, 2012. Launch customer Lufthansa took delivery of the first airline Intercontinental April 25, 2012.

On June 28, 2014, Boeing delivered the 1,500th 747 to come off the production line to Frankfurt, Germany-based Lufthansa. The 747 is the first wide-body airplane in history to reach the 1,500 milestone.

More from Bloomberg: CLICK HERE

Some of the Boeing 747-100 operators: CLICK HERE

Some of the Boeing 747-200 operators: CLICK HERE

Some of the Boeing 747-300 operators: CLICK HERE

Some of the Boeing 747-400 operators: CLICK HERE

Some of the Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental operators: CLICK HERE

Some of the Boeing 747SP operators: CLICK HERE

Lufthansa joined the celebrations and issued this statement:

It’s been 50 years since the first Boeing 747-100 took off over Seattle on its official maiden flight on February 9, 1969 – to the cheers of thousands of spectators. The Boeing 747-100 was the largest jet airliner the world had ever seen.

The success story of the Boeing 747 aircraft family started in the mid-60s, when Boeing developed a wide-body jet as an answer to the growing aviation needs. After less than four years of planning and development, in which Lufthansa engineers also took part, the jet, built from around six million individual parts, was ready to take to the skies.

Lufthansa's first Boeing 747-130, delivered on March 10, 1970 - Best Seller

Above Copyright Photo: Lufthansa Boeing 747-130 D-ABYA (msn 19746) JFK (Bruce Drum). Image: 102291.

The first Boeing 747-130 with the Lufthansa registration “D-ABYA” carried the production number 12. The “Yankee Alpha”, as it was called within the company, was handed over to Lufthansa on March 9, 1970 and was deployed on the Frankfurt-New York route for the first time on April 26, 1970. Lufthansa was the first European airline to provide its passenger the opportunity to fly by Jumbo Jet, being the second international airline following Pan American World Airways (PanAm).

The excitement of the passengers and crew on board was immense. Right from the entrance point to the jet, one gets into a “celebrative champagne mood”, a journalist wrote at that time. Hardly surprising, when considering that there was a bar in the First Class Lounge on the upper deck of the aircraft. To this day, the “hump” of the Boeing 747, which houses the cockpit and upper deck, remains the distinguishing feature of the Jumbo Jet in comparison to all other types of aircraft. The silhouette of the Boeing 747 has shaped the jet age and is still a style icon for many aviation enthusiasts.

The Boeing 747, with almost 70 meters in length and a span of nearly 60 meters, was christened by the American press as “Jumbo Jet”, offering space for 365 passengers at Lufthansa. The height of the tail unit, approximately 19 meters, was higher than a five-story building. The aircraft had a four-engine wide-body. These engines achieved more than twice the performance of a Boeing 707, which had previously been used on long-haul flights in intercontinental air traffic, but could only accommodate about 150 passengers.

Before accepting its first Jumbo Jet, Lufthansa had to adapt its aircraft and passenger handling so that they could cope with the different dimensions of the aircraft. New passenger boarding bridges, special tractors, kitchen lift trucks and tanker trucks were all developed at Frankfurt Airport, including a 27,000 square meter aircraft hangar with space for up to six Jumbo Jets. In addition, further counters had to be made available in the check-in hall.

After Lufthansa had also operated its successor models (the 747-200 and 747-400), Lufthansa was the world’s first passenger airline to receive the first Jumbo Jet’s “grandson”, the Boeing 747-8, on May 2nd, 2012. The modern aircraft can accommodate up to 364 passengers in First, Business, Premium Economy and Economy Class. It consumes just over three liters of fuel per passenger over 100 kilometers and has 30 percent lower noise emissions than its predecessor. When Lufthansa unveiled its new brand look about a year ago, a Boeing 747-8 was the first aircraft to be presented in the new livery. Like the first 747 aircraft 50 years ago, this machine is called “Yankee Alpha”, too.

The Jumbo Jet did not only have a career as a passenger aircraft. In March 1972, Lufthansa took on the world’s “first smiling Boeing” – the freight version, the Boeing 747-230F. Its prow opened up horizontally, making it easy to load even bulky goods. The Jumbo Jet was nicknamed the “Beetle swallower”, as it had space for 72 VW Beetles in its fuselage.

Happy Birthday, Jumbo!

United’s tribute to the Boeing 747:

Boeing Autonomous Passenger Air Vehicle completes first flight

Boeing yesterday (January 22) successfully completed the first test flight of its autonomous passenger air vehicle (PAV) prototype in Manassas, Virginia.

Boeing NeXt, which leads the company’s urban air mobility efforts, utilized Boeing subsidiary Aurora Flight Sciences to design and develop the electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft and will continue testing to advance the safety and reliability of on-demand autonomous air transportation.

 

The PAV prototype completed a controlled takeoff, hover and landing during the flight, which tested the vehicle’s autonomous functions and ground control systems. Future flights will test forward, wing-borne flight, as well as the transition phase between vertical and forward-flight modes. This transition phase is typically the most significant engineering challenge for any high-speed VTOL aircraft.

“In one year, we have progressed from a conceptual design to a flying prototype,” said Boeing Chief Technology Officer Greg Hyslop. “Boeing’s expertise and innovation have been critical in developing aviation as the world’s safest and most efficient form of transportation, and we will continue to lead with a safe, innovative and responsible approach to new mobility solutions.”

Powered by an electric propulsion system, the PAV prototype is designed for fully autonomous flight from takeoff to landing, with a range of up to 50 miles (80.47 kilometers). Measuring 30 feet (9.14 meters) long and 28 feet (8.53 meters) wide, its advanced airframe integrates the propulsion and wing systems to achieve efficient hover and forward flight.

“This is what revolution looks like, and it’s because of autonomy,” said John Langford, president and chief executive officer of Aurora Flight Sciences. “Certifiable autonomy is going to make quiet, clean and safe urban air mobility possible.”

The test flight represents the latest milestone for Boeing NeXt. The division works with regulatory agencies and industry partners to lead the responsible introduction of a new mobility ecosystem and ensure a future where autonomous and piloted air vehicles safely coexist. In addition to the PAV, the Boeing NeXt portfolio includes an unmanned fully electric cargo air vehicle (CAV) designed to transport up to 500 pounds (226.80 kilograms) and other urban, regional and global mobility platforms. The CAV completed its first indoor flight last year and will transition to outdoor flight testing in 2019.

Photo: Boeing.

 

Embraer and Boeing welcome Brazilian Government approval of strategic partnership

Embraer and Boeing have welcomed approval by the Government of Brazil of the strategic partnership that will position both companies to accelerate growth in global aerospace markets.

The government’s approval comes after the two companies last month approved terms for the joint venture that will be made up of the commercial aircraft and services operations of Embraer. Boeing will hold an 80 percent ownership stake in the new company and Embraer will hold the remaining 20 percent.

The companies have also agreed to the terms of another joint venture to promote and develop new markets for the multi-mission medium airlift KC-390. Under the terms of this proposed partnership, Embraer will own a 51 percent stake in the joint venture, with Boeing owning the remaining 49 percent.

Once Embraer’s Board of Directors ratifies its prior approval, the two companies will then execute definitive transaction documents. The closing of the transaction will be subject to shareholder and regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions. Assuming the approvals are received in a timely manner, the transaction is intended to close by the end of 2019.

Photo: Embraer.

Boeing unveils new Transonic Truss-Braced Wing

Boeing revealed the newest Transonic Truss-Braced Wing (TTBW), which researchers say will fly higher and faster than the previous TTBW concepts. The new configuration is designed to offer unprecedented aerodynamic efficiency while flying at Mach 0.80.

From end-to-end, the folding wings measure 170 feet. The high wingspan is made possible by the presence of a truss, which supports the extended length of the ultra-thin wing.

Originally, the TTBW was designed to fly at speeds of Mach 0.70 – 0.75. To increase the aircraft’s cruise speed, the new concept now has an optimized truss and a modified wing sweep. By adjusting the wing sweep angle, the truss can carry lift more efficiently. The end result was a more integrated design that significantly improved vehicle performance.

The new changes follow extensive wind tunnel testing at NASA Ames Research Center. For nearly a decade, Boeing and NASA have been studying the concept as part of the Subsonic Ultra Green Aircraft Research (SUGAR) program. The research focuses on innovative concepts that reduce noise and emissions while enhancing performance.