Krauts: Au revoir, Airbus

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by Tennessee Slim, Feb 20, 2007.

  1. Tennessee Slim

    Tennessee Slim Señor Member CLM

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    Times Online
    February 20, 2007
    Airbus faces break-up as Franco-German talks fail
    David Robertson, Adam Sage in Paris and Roger Boyes in Berlin

    Airbus, the European aircraft manufacturer, faces the possibility of being broken up after German shareholders and executives were understood to have been discussing the feasibility of the group’s present structure.

    The Times understands that there is enormous dissatisfaction on the German side of EADS, the defence company that owns Airbus, and sources close to the company say that the Germans are considering a breakup. Such a move would end an experiment in European co-operation that has built Airbus and EADS into an aerospace giant with more than 110,000 employees, including 17,000 in the UK.

    The crisis at Airbus was triggered on Sunday by shareholders refusing to back a restructuring plan submitted by Louis Gallois, the co-chief executive of EADS and head of Airbus. The plan, which was scheduled to be announced today at Airbus headquarters in Toulouse, called for cost-cutting and improved efficiencies in aircraft production.

    The Power 8 plan will entail the outsourcing of factories, the rationalisation of the supply chain and possibly thousands of redundancies. Mr Gallois is also trying to tie work on a new aircraft, the A350, into this new, more efficient production regime. This would mean concentrating A350 work at fewer sites rather than spreading construction across Europe, as happens at present.

    However, the German Government has balked at receiving less work on the A350 than the French. The present proposals could leave the Germans with only 10 per cent of A350 work, compared with France’s 35 per cent.

    Pressure will be on Mr Gallois to water down Power 8 and assign more A350 work to Germany. This could endanger the UK’s role in the A350, which covers about 20 per cent of the €10 billion (£6.7 billion) project. The Airbus factory at Broughton, North Wales, is scheduled to build the wings of the aircraft. However, sources close to Airbus said last night that the Germans were playing a political game with France. These sources believe that the Germans will agree to Power 8 — and giving France the bulk of A350 work — only if they get all A320 production in return. This would effectively split Airbus, with the smaller aircraft made in Germany and the larger ones in France. A formal divorce between the two countries would then be achieved easily.

    French Airbus executives were pinning the blame yesterday on German shareholders for the deadlock over Power 8 restructuring. They said that Angela Merkel, the Chancellor, had used the main German shareholder, DaimlerChrysler, to express her opposition to a reorganisation of Airbus’s production model.

    Sources in Paris accused Mrs Merkel of playing politics at the expense of Airbus to win praise among the German electorate.

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    http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/industry_sectors/transport/article1409307.ece
     
  2. seanmac45

    seanmac45 CLM

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    The Germans and the French duking it out in a financial catfight.


    Sort of makes you smile, doesn't it?:)
     

  3. Tennessee Slim

    Tennessee Slim Señor Member CLM

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    You had to know when the joint company got into financial straits, the Jerrys would blame it all on the racially inferior and technologically challenged Frogs.
     
  4. jacquejet

    jacquejet

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    Airbus is in deep trouble. I love the A320 family (having flown one for as f/o for 4 years and capt for 11) but the A380 is seriously flawed and working out its problems is going to cost them big bucks (euros). Airbus' competitor to Boeing's 787, the redesigned 350 isn't off the drawing boards. Worst of all, EADS brought in a bureaucrat to solve their problems and let go the engineer/management leader that was in charge.
     
  5. HollowHead

    HollowHead Firm member

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    The A-320:
    We'll give you one guess what happens seconds later... HH
    [​IMG]
     
  6. jacquejet

    jacquejet

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    Hollowhead:

    Do you have any idea how many pax/crew were on that A320 and how many were killed?
     
  7. jungle

    jungle Guest

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    I think that is his point.
     
  8. jacquejet

    jacquejet

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    I think you both miss the point. There were 60+ people aboard that bus and in the insuing crash none were killed. Three people died from the post crash fire. Had that been any other aircraft, all would most likely have died in the initial crash when the aircraft would have stalled, dropped a wing and cartwheeled on impact.

    Because it was an A320, the flight control laws prevented the pilot from stalling the aircraft.

    Your clever video does not show what happened before the crash. Curious?
    The pilot (the chief of training for that airline-a red flag in itself) was attempting to do a maneuver that Airbus did at 1000' AGL. Michele (the pilot) decided to do it at 100' instead. The maneuver was an attempt to demonstrate how the A320 performs when a pilot tries to exceed a maximum angle of attack thus stalling the A/C. When the airbus detects that a predetermined angle of attack has been reached, the autothrottles go to
    TOGA and the sidestick controller holds the pitch at an angle of attack just below that of stall and the aircraft climbs upwards at an impressive rate and angle.

    Unfortunately for Michele, he allowed the altitude to fall below 100' on his radar altimeter while his gear was down. In this configuration, the aircraft control laws assumed that the aircraaft was about to land and thus that particular feature was automatically deactivated. Poor Michele, sometimes you just can't fix stupid.

    The video shows the bus flying from right to left holding between 50 and 100 feet till the copilot (also a training captain) said something to the effect that those shrubs at the end of the field were trees. The throttles were manually slammed to TOGA and the engines begin to wind up to full power.

    The captain after the crash swore the computers had malfunctioned by not allowing the engines to come to full power in time to clear the trees. Again stupid strikes.

    The FAA mandates that all turbofan engines, to be certified, must be able to go from idle to TOGA in 8 seconds or less. This is exactly what happened. If you listen carefully to the video audio, you can hear the engines wind up exactly the way they should have. Unfortunately, the aircraft had been flown into a hole that couldn't be gotten out of and the A320 had been turned into the worlds largest "Salad Shooter".

    The pax were from a group that had won the right to be on the aircraft (don't ask me for the particulars of that) and at the time of impact, most were not belted in, some were standing in the aisles and at least one was in a wheel chair and not in his seat.

    At the captain's trial for neglience (and stupidity), he swore up and down that the aircraft had suffered multiple computer failures and should never have done what it did. In reality, the airlplane and the flight control laws worked exactly as they were designed to do. Only the pilots malfunctioned, and they went to jail for that.

    Those who are alive today from that were saved from a death by stupidity by an aircraft that was so well designed.
     
  9. WINGS

    WINGS CLM

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    Boeing, Boeing, Boeing...............

    British Airways orders 4 Boeing 777s - Toronto Star

    Virgin close to signing US$2.6 billon Boeing order - Malaysia Star

    Stock futures flat before CPI, Boeing rises - Washington Post



    :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:
     
  10. jungle

    jungle Guest

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    jacquejet, I know you are a big fan of the 'Bus and fly them. The point was not that by some miracle the pax survived, or that even the "head of training" couldn't figure out what he did wrong, or even that you falsely claim a normal aircraft could not have flown out of a similar situation without crashing(not that it would not have gotten into such a situation in the first place).

    The real point is that aside from the success of the 319/320 series Airbus, EVERY other Airbus has been a commercial failure.
    Do you not find it ironic that Air France flies the Boeing 777 and Boeing 747-400 as it's flagships?

    Au revoir Airbus. It was an interesting footnote in aviation, much like the Concorde.
     
  11. seanmac45

    seanmac45 CLM

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    Jacquejet;

    Thank you for a highly informative post. I had seen the videos of that crash previously, and erroneously believed that all aboard were killed.


    The Captain and Co-Pilot went to prison? Amazing, in that I don't believe that would happen in this country.

    Regards,

    Sean
     
  12. jungle

    jungle Guest

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    jaquejet was almost right on that point, there weren't many killed, just mangled and burnt. Not a tremendous boost to Airbus design, just a spot of good luck in a very bad day. Saying that few deaths in this case was a result of Airbus design is a leap-I would guess the trees provided a controlled deceleration that was more survivable than a solid mass impact.

    A more balanced view:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_France_Flight_296
     
  13. Tennessee Slim

    Tennessee Slim Señor Member CLM

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    If Boeing were to doctor the evidence to implicate the crew and exonerate themselves in the doing (which it appears Airbus did), and the government were complicit, yeah, they could put the crew in jail.

    However, in the aftermath of a crash in France, they immediately arrest everyone (still living) from the pilots to the mechanics. In the aftermath of a crash in the US, union reps spirit away the flight deck crew, hold them in seclusion and negotiate their appearance for any after-action testimony and investigation. The US method does make it a little tougher for the airline and/or manufacturer to slither out of responsibility.
     
  14. seanmac45

    seanmac45 CLM

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    Lots to be learned here.

    Thanks for the input.
     
  15. jungle

    jungle Guest

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  16. seanmac45

    seanmac45 CLM

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    I was thinking about Flight 587 during this discussion.



    I KNOW that the consensus of opinions of pilots who post on the internet is that Boeing products don't break.


    Looks like Airbus needs to work on that part of the equation.
     
  17. seanmac45

    seanmac45 CLM

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    Has anything been done about the defects in Airbus 300 series rudders?
     
  18. seanmac45

    seanmac45 CLM

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    "The crash, pilots say, raised alarms because it involved a basic aircraft part that pilots do not use very much. The rudder, the flap on the vertical tail, moves right and left to help pilots land in a crosswind. It is also used to maneuver the airplane on the ground while taxiing."


    Is this a factual statement? Is the rudder mainly used for crosswind landings and taxiing?

    I thought it was an important control surface in flight, controlling yaw.
     
  19. jungle

    jungle Guest

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    Yaw control on transport category jets is done through the yaw dampers controlling the rudder movement without pilot input. Normally pilot inputs to the rudder are only made during takeoff and landing and some during taxi due to nosewheel steering inputs through the rudder pedals. In case of engine failure the rudder is used to counter yaw and then trimmed to maintain a best performance condition.

    Airbus has issued a tech note on uncommanded rudder inputs, see the end of this article:

    http://www.iasa-intl.com/folders/the068event/the068event.html
     
  20. Tennessee Slim

    Tennessee Slim Señor Member CLM

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    There was a warning in the Airbus A300-600 operator’s manual not to dance on the rudder pedals to try to control yawing in turbulence. Unfortunately, the Frogs didn’t see fit to include that admonishment in the English-language version of the manual.