Boeing Commercial Airplanes

Unsurprisingly, given the significance of the story, there has been focus in media coverage around the Paris Air Show of the 737 MAX and its return to flight.

Some reports have said airlines are preparing for the type’s grounding to continue for some time yet, and the US Federal Aviation Administration’s acting administrator said recently the expectation is the 737 MAX will return to service before the end of the year.

Separate to the 737 MAX, the opening morning at Paris saw a GE Aviation press conference in which the engine manufacturer indicated a delay to the first flight of Boeing’s next new aircraft, the 777X.

GE Aviation Chief Executive Officer David Joyce reportedly said a component in the front of the compressor is wearing prematurely, necessitating a redesign and testing of the part. According to reports, the 777X’s first flight – which had been set for late June – will now be delayed until later this year.

Meanwhile, Boeing presented its latest annual Commercial Market Outlook (CMO) forecast. The CMO predicts growing passenger volumes and increasing aircraft retirements will drive a need for 44,040 new jets over the next two decades, a 3% increase on the last CMO a year ago. It predicts the global commercial aircraft fleet is expected to reach 50,660 by 2038, the first time a CMO projection has exceeded 50,000 aircraft.

Boeing thinks growing demand for single-aisle aircraft will account for most of the demand for new equipment, predicting lowcost carriers, replacement demand and continuing growth in the Asia-Pacific region will create demand for 32,420 new aircraft. In the widebody segment, Boeing forecasts demand for 8,340 new passenger aircraft and 1,040 new large production freighters over the next 20 years.