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posted by cmn32480 on Saturday July 30 2016, @05:04AM   Printer-friendly
from the old-tech-phased-out dept.

Arthur T Knackerbracket has found the following story:

Six months after slicing production of the iconic Boeing 747 to just one plane a month, the aerospace company has decided to halve the rate of production and flagged it is close to killing off the plane.

A new Form 10-Q filed with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission spells out the ugly situation as “Lower-than-expected demand for large commercial passenger and freighter aircraft and slower-than-expected growth of global freight traffic have continued to drive market uncertainties, pricing pressures and fewer orders than anticipated.”

Boeing has therefore “canceled previous plans to return to a production rate of 1.0 aircraft per month beginning in 2019.”

The company still has “32 undelivered aircraft” on its books, some yet to be built. But it also has “a number of completed aircraft in inventory” for which buyers cannot be found.

Production of the 747 will therefore been reduced just six planes a year as of September 2016 and the filing makes it plain that Boeing knows it may soon have a difficult decision to make.

“If we are unable to obtain sufficient orders and/or market, production and other risks cannot be mitigated,” the filing says, “we could record additional losses that may be material, and it is reasonably possible that we could decide to end production of the 747.”

The 747 remains a fine aircraft, but twin-engine planes can now match it for capacity and, crucially, for long flights over areas where airports are scarce.


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  • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 30 2016, @06:27AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 30 2016, @06:27AM (#381896)

    Well, it does give you a better feeling upon discovering you have lost an engine - if you know there are still three of 'em still running.

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  • (Score: 2, Funny) by fustakrakich on Saturday July 30 2016, @03:15PM

    by fustakrakich (6150) on Saturday July 30 2016, @03:15PM (#381965) Journal

    Yeah, when an engine quits you just arrive a little later. If they all quit, you'll be stuck up there all day.

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  • (Score: 1) by nethead on Saturday July 30 2016, @06:49PM

    by nethead (4970) <joe@nethead.com> on Saturday July 30 2016, @06:49PM (#382016) Homepage
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  • (Score: 2) by el_oscuro on Sunday July 31 2016, @02:07AM

    by el_oscuro (1711) on Sunday July 31 2016, @02:07AM (#382136)

    My dad was on a 747 out of Paris over the pond. A short time later, they lost an engine and returned to Paris. Now change the scenario slightly:

    The engine goes out in the middle of the flight over the Pacific. The closest landfall is Hawaii, 2,000 miles away.

    747/A380: Still 3 good engines. We'll keep a good eye on them and adjust our course to be reasonably close to Hawaii while continuing to our destination.
    A350/777: Shit! we lost an engine. We are still good, but have no backups. If the 2nd one goes out before our rated 370 minutes is complete, we are screwed.

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