Boeing arrives at the 2022 Farnborough Air Show with much to prove during the week-long aviation expo.
Company leadership must convince the world that Boeing is emerging from the chaos of its recent safety, quality, regulatory and financial troubles and that some stability is in sight.
Seattle Times aerospace reporter Dominic Gates is in England for the air show. Follow this page for his coverage and stories from The Times wire services.
Boeing wraps up successful airshow
FARNBOROUGH, England — Boeing wrapped up a successful Farnborough Air Show Thursday with one more finalized 737 MAX jet order, from Qatar Airways, and a last-minute commitment from airfreight carrier Cargolux to buy the 777X widebody freighter.
It’s been a week of good news for Boeing, a rare respite from a litany of setbacks and problems stretching back three years — and perhaps at last a turn in fortune.
After two fatal crashes of the MAX, the grounding of that jet, the staggering financial downturn caused by the pandemic and the discovery of defects that have stopped almost all deliveries of the 787 for 21 months, Boeing sales chief Ihssane Mounir was carefully humble as he welcomed this week’s successes.
“We’ve been going through a lot as an industry. We’ve been going through a lot as a company,” he said.
“I don’t think any of us will say that there is a point in time where we’ve turned the corner,” he said. “Trust has to be earned all the time. One airplane at a time, one delivery at a time, one engagement at a time.”
Seattle aerospace company at Farnborough looking for business
FARNBOROUGH, England — Electric aircraft concepts are everywhere at the Farnborough Air Show this year, often merely mock-ups of early prototypes developed by startups.
Lee Human is here to drum up business from such innovative projects for his Seattle aerospace engineering company, AeroTEC.
While neither Airbus nor Boeing will be launching an all-new airplane for some years, multiple well-funded startups are trying to create small electric aircraft to decarbonize flight. Though many will fail, in the meantime they’ve created exciting, challenging work for aerospace engineers in Seattle.
“It’s an incredible time to be in aerospace,” said Human. “We haven’t had new propulsion systems available to us since the invention of the jet engine.”
WA supplier hit hard by aerospace downturn prepares for future
FARNBOROUGH, England — Aerospace suppliers in Washington state have suffered through an unprecedented downturn due to the double impact of the pandemic and Boeing’s very low production rates.
Some have gone out of business. Some have downsized.
Those that survived have had to transform — including Sekisui Aerospace, which manufactures composite cabin interior parts such as galleys and crew rests in Renton and ducting for cabin air conditioning systems in Sumner.
In an interview at the Washington state stand at the Farnborough Air Show in England, CEO Daniele Cagnatel described a dramatic shrinking and rebirth.
Saudia Arabia wants Amazon, DHL to help grow air-cargo operations
Saudi Arabia plans to stage a number of roadshows in the next 12 to 18 months as it seeks to persuade the likes of Amazon, Alibaba, and Deutsche Post AG’s DHL to help scale up air-cargo and distribution operations.
The push into air cargo and logistics aims to lift the amount of freight handled to 4.5 million tons annually by the end of the decade as part of a $100 billion plan to expand aviation in line with the Vision 2030 strategy of overhauling the Saudi economy and reducing its reliance on oil.
Airbus CEO isn't worried about Boeing's sales at Farnborough Airshow
FARNBOROUGH, U.K. — Despite the scope and size of the Farnborough Air Show, Airbus left with an unusually low number of sale announcements.
Yet in an interview, CEO Guillaume Faury joked about it. After a three-year break from the big Air Shows, “maybe we need to remember how we organize it,” he said, laughing.
Rather than talking sales to airlines, he said his focus at Farnborough is on meeting suppliers to talk about the challenge of building jets as the supply chain wobbles from the impact of labor shortages and the war in Ukraine.
Despite issues with late deliveries of engines and other parts, Faury offered a confident defense of the company’s aggressive ramp-up plans, which threaten to create a severe imbalance with Boeing’s production rates.
Supply chain issues hot topic at Farnborough Air Show
Production bottlenecks were the key talking point at the aviation industry’s equivalent to speed dating — flurries of meetings held at elaborate temporary chalets erected at Farnborough International Airshow, where executives took the opportunity to connect face-to-face once again.
“It’s topic number one in every meeting in every chalet I’ve been,” said Chris Calio, chief operating officer for Raytheon Technologies, having huddled with some of his company’s biggest customers, including Boeing.
Boeing’s commercial chief Stan Deal described the contrast between the U.S. planemaker’s sales bonanza and its struggles to get thousands of companies to deliver parts on time as a “tale of two worlds."
Delta announces purchase of Airbus planes day after large Boeing order
One day after placing a big order with Boeing, Delta Air Lines said Tuesday it has ordered 12 more jets from Airbus, Boeing’s European rival.
Delta converted previous options for the Airbus A220 into firm orders that will be delivered starting in 2026. The deal was announced at the Farnborough International Airshow near London.
The A220 has up to 130 seats and is bigger than a regional jet but smaller than the Boeing 737 MAX.
Boeing's commercial airplane boss talks about the future and return to office
FARNBOROUGH, U.K. — Boeing does not plan to launch a new airplane for at least a couple of years. But it does have about 1,000 people in Everett working on the possibilities, said Stan Deal, chief executive of the Commercial Airplanes division.
In an interview with The Seattle Times on the opening day of the Farnborough Air Show, he outlined the state of Boeing’s global engineering resources — across the U.S. and in Moscow, Kyiv, Ukraine, and Bangalore, India — and how the Puget Sound region fits into his thinking.
He argued that Boeing Commercial can place engineering work elsewhere and still retain its center of gravity in the Seattle area.
He also explained that he wants his engineers back in the office again. And he insisted that, contrary to the doubts of critics, Boeing is working on its future.
Boeing's 777X and 737 MAX 10 on display at Farnborough
FARNBOROUGH, England — The giant Boeing 777-9X glistened in the already hot morning sun as the Farnborough Air Show opened Monday.
Inside the coolly air-conditioned plane, some Seattle-based Boeing flight test engineers and test pilots spoke of their pride in the exhilarating work they do.
Flight test pilot James Hanley, 53, a former Air Force KC-135 tanker and C-17 cargo jet pilot, now 10 years at Boeing, flew this 777X test plane nonstop from Seattle.
Beside the 777X on the ramp, the largest model of the 737 MAX family of jets, the MAX 10, looked small.
Boeing shared the flights on social media.
Delta to buy big order of Boeing's 737 MAX 10s
FARNBOROUGH, England — As a top Delta executive confirmed an expected order at the Farnborough Air Show for 100 Boeing 737 MAX 10s — with options to purchase another 30 on similar terms — he said it was a “delicate moment” that marked a positive turn in a relationship that had gone awry.
Mahendra Nair, senior vice president at Delta responsible for its aircraft fleet, also declared the commonality of the MAX 10 cockpit systems with other 737s “the biggest factor that drove the decision” to buy.
With that, Nair offered full support for Boeing’s position that Congress should act to ensure that the jetmaker can get this largest MAX model certified without upgrading its systems.
The “delicate moment” was the return of this major U.S. airline to Boeing after a substantial break.
Although Delta has bought Boeing planes for 50 years, “for the last 11 years there was a little bit of a drought,” said Nair.
Boeing's boss for commerical airplanes expects "robust" airshow
London — On the eve of the Farnborough Air Show, the biggest aviation event since the coronavirus pandemic slammed the industry, Boeing Commercial Airplanes boss Stan Deal said Sunday he expects a successful show, with significant order announcements Monday and more jet sales as the week unfolds.
“It’s gonna be a pretty robust show,” Deal said.
Boeing hopes to demonstrate stability at major air show
LONDON — When the Farnborough Air Show opens Monday south of London, still at the beginning of a recovery from the darkest time the industry has seen, the world’s commercial jetmakers will showcase big airplane orders as if this were a normal year.
For passengers, air travel today is miserably affected by high fares, delays, cancellations and staff shortages. For airlines, packed planes and those ticket prices mean some are making money again and beginning to order jets in anticipation of growing traffic.
Farnborough this year will encompass visions of the far future as new aviation entrants peddle dreams of new technologies — decarbonized flight and flying taxis to take you from midtown Manhattan to JFK in minutes.
For Airbus and Boeing, in the more mundane business of resuming long-haul airplane sales, Farnborough could be a turning point.
This first major European air show in three years is set to open under a record-breaking extreme heat forecast of 99 degrees on Monday that threatens to curtail outdoor activity, perhaps even some of the flying displays.
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