Tag Archives: San Bernardino

Photo: 22 Lion Air Group Boeing 737s parked at San Bernardino, CA mostly going to Delta

No, this not Jakarta, Indonesia. It is at San Bernardino, CA in the LA area. At least 22 Boeing 737s from the Group (Lion Air, Malindo and Batik Air) have been retired from service and are in storage at SBD.

From atcpilot_photography on Instagram

In July 2021 Delta made this announcement:

Delta has entered into agreements to add 29 used Boeing 737-900ERs and lease seven used Airbus A350-900s as it continues to streamline and modernize its fleet. The 36 additional aircraft will improve fuel efficiency and enhance the customer experience, while supporting Delta’s fleet renewal strategy focused on simplification, scale, size and sustainability.

“These aircraft are an investment in Delta’s future,” said Delta CEO Ed Bastian. “As we look past the pandemic, Delta’s disciplined, innovative approach to fleet renewal positions us for growth as travel demand returns, while enhancing the customer experience and supporting our sustainability commitments.”

The COVID-19 pandemic provided an opportunity to simplify Delta’s fleet and accelerate retirements of 18 widebody 777s, and the MD-88 and MD-90 narrowbody fleets, all of them older and less efficient. The pandemic also provided unique business opportunities to add newer generation aircraft at attractive prices.

Widebody fleet renewal is instrumental to Delta’s recovery, and will help position Delta for sustained profitability and future growth. As Delta’s flagship aircraft, the A350 provides a world-class customer experience, enhances cargo capacity, reduces unit costs and contributes to a more sustainable future.

The next-generation A350s burn 21 percent less fuel per seat than the 777s they replace. Improved fuel efficiency is paramount to Delta’s ongoing efforts to reduce its carbon emissions and its Flight to Net Zero. The acquisition of 29 narrowbody 737-900ERs also complement Delta’s existing fleet.

Delta will lease the A350s through AerCap and purchase 27 of the 737-900ERs from funds managed by Castlelake, L.P., while the remaining two 737-900ERs will be financed from funds also managed by Castlelake, L.P. Both transactions are subject to closing conditions. Deliveries of the aircraft will be completed by the first quarter of 2022, and they will enter service after modifications are completed.

In addition to the seven A350s that are part of this announcement, Delta currently has 15 A359s in service and 20 on order. The addition of the 29 737-900ERs will bring the total to 159 in its fleet.

The agreement follows Delta’s decision in April to exercise options on 25 additional A321neo jets, which will start to deliver next year. Those aircraft offer the lowest seat costs in Delta’s fleet.

Boeing 787s to be repaired in the order they were delivered

Boeing (Chicago) is aggressively moving ahead to make 787 battery system changes on a worldwide basis. Boeing has already dispatched teams to locations around the world to begin installing improved battery systems on the already delivered 787s. Kits with the parts needed for the new battery systems are staged for shipment and new batteries also will be shipped immediately. Teams have been assigned to customer locations to install the new systems.  According to Boeing, airplanes will be modified in approximately the order they were delivered. ANA was the first to take delivery. Boeing has issued this statement:

With the FAA approval of the battery system improvements for the 787 Dreamliner by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) clears the way for Boeing and its customers to install the approved modifications and will lead to a return to service and resumption of new production deliveries.

“FAA approval clears the way for us and the airlines to begin the process of returning the 787 to flight with continued confidence in the safety and reliability of this game-changing new airplane,” said Boeing Chairman, President and CEO Jim McNerney. “The promise of the 787 and the benefits it provides to airlines and their passengers remain fully intact as we take this important step forward with our customers and program partners.”

The FAA’s action will permit the return to service of 787s in the United States upon installation of the improvements. For 787s based and modified outside the United States, local regulatory authorities provide the final approval on return to service.

Approval of the improved 787 battery system was granted by the FAA after the agency conducted an extensive review of certification tests.  The tests were designed to validate that individual components of the battery, as well as its integration with the charging system and a new enclosure, all performed as expected during normal operation and under failure conditions. Testing was conducted under the supervision of the FAA over a month-long period beginning in early March.

“The FAA set a high bar for our team and our solution,” said McNerney. “We appreciate the diligence, expertise and professionalism of the FAA’s technical team and the leadership of FAA Administrator Michael Huerta and Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood throughout this process.  Our shared commitment with global regulators and our customers to safe, efficient and reliable airplanes has helped make air travel the safest form of transportation in the world today.”

Boeing, in collaboration with its supplier partners and in support of the investigations of the National Transportation Safety Board and the Japan Transport Safety Board, conducted extensive engineering analysis and testing to develop a thorough understanding of the factors that could have caused the 787’s batteries to fail and overheat in two incidents last January.  The team spent more than 100,000 hours developing test plans, building test rigs, conducting tests and analyzing the results to ensure the proposed solutions met all requirements.

“Our team has worked tirelessly to develop a comprehensive solution that fully satisfies the FAA and its global counterparts, our customers and our own high standards for safety and reliability,” said Boeing Commercial Airplanes President and CEO Ray Conner. “Through the skill and dedication of the Boeing team and our partners, we achieved that objective and made a great airplane even better.”

Boeing also engaged a team of more than a dozen battery experts from across multiple industries, government, academia and consumer safety to review and validate the company’s assumptions, findings, proposed solution and test plan.

The improved battery system includes design changes to both prevent and isolate a fault should it occur. In addition, improved production, operating and testing processes have been implemented. The new steel enclosure system is designed to keep any level of battery overheating from affecting the airplane or even being noticed by passengers.

“This is a comprehensive and permanent solution with multiple layers of protection,” said Conner.  “The ultimate layer of protection is the new enclosure, which will ensure that even if a battery fails, there is no impact to the airplane and no possibility of fire. We have the right solution in hand, and we are ready to go.

“We are all very grateful to our customers for their patience during the past several months,” said Conner. “We know it hasn’t been easy on them to have their 787s out of service and their deliveries delayed. We look forward to helping them get back into service as quickly as possible.”

Boeing has deployed teams to locations around the world to begin installing improved battery systems on 787s. Kits with the parts needed for the new battery systems are staged for shipment and new batteries also will be shipped immediately. Teams have been assigned to customer locations to install the new systems.  Airplanes will be modified in approximately the order they were delivered.

“The Boeing team is ready to help get our customers’ 787s back in the air where they belong,” said Conner.

Boeing will also begin installing the changes on new airplanes at the company’s two 787 final-assembly plants, with deliveries expected to resume in the weeks ahead. Despite the disruption in deliveries that began in January, Boeing expects to complete all planned 2013 deliveries by the end of the year. Boeing further expects that the 787 battery issue will have no significant impact to its 2013 financial guidance.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing. A close-up of Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner N787BX (msn 40692) “ZA003” test aircraft with probes for early testing.