Sunday, March 17, 2013

'Game-changing' that turned into a headache

Valuable lesson for budding engineers and designers out there. Intel uses a more pragmatic approach in its tick-tock, where they advance the technology in two steps (a tick and a tock) spread over 2 products, instead of one 'game-changing' move.
"I think Alan Mulally (current Ford Motors chief who was running Boeing Commercial Airplanes at the time of the 787 launch) wanted it to be gamechanging. So 'job one' was everything on this airplane is going to be game-changing," says Leahy.
But incorporating gamechanging technology is not always for the better, he says: "We do not believe the 787's electric pressurisation brings anything except maintenance and reliability problems.
"We don't think having an airplane flying at 41,000ft, in minus 60 degree outside temperature, should be heated electronically. We've got sources of power called the engines that aren't using all their power, and you can use some of that to pressurise and heat the cabin, to deice the airplane."
When Airbus redesigned the A350, their engineers went "back and forth" three times about whether to equip the XWB with electric brakes before deciding to stick with conventional hydraulic architecture.
Flight Global: Leahy questions 787’s heavy reliance on electrical power 

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