Boeing 737 MAX

Boeing has unveiled the final design plans for its upcoming 737 MAX aircraft in a bid to enhance the performance of the new engine variant.

Boeing 737 programme vice president and general manager, Beverly Wyse, said: "The 737 MAX is on-track to deliver fuel-savings to customers starting in 2017."

"We’ve made several design decisions that support the performance targets for the MAX and evolve the Next-Generation 737’s design within the scope of the 737 MAX program," Wyse added.

Under the final design plan, the company will extend the aircraft’s tail cone and thicken a section of the rear fuselage on top of the horizontal tail to enhance air flow and reduce drag.

The aircraft will be powered by new CFM International LEAP-1B engines incorporated with the wings, while a new pylon and strut, as well as an 8in nose gear extension will be added to facilitate the aircraft to maintain the required ground clearance.

Further, the company has planned to save weight by equipping the aircraft with fly-by-wire spoilers, rather than mechanically controlled spoilers.

The aircraft’s main landing gear, wing and fuselage will be reinforced and will also be equipped with an electronic bleed air system to enhance fuel savings.

Boeing 737 MAX programme chief project engineer and deputy program manager, Michael Teal, said: "We also continue to do work in the wind tunnel to affirm the low- and high-speed performance of the 737 MAX design."

"Based on design work and preliminary testing results, we have even more confidence in our ability to give our customers the fuel savings they need while minimising the development risk on this program," Teal said.

Expected to finalise the design of 737 MAX by mid next year, the aircraft maker claims that the airplane will offer a 10-12% fuel-burn and a gain of 7% in operating cost per-seat.

Boeing has received about 1,000 orders and commitments for 737 MAX to date from 16 customers globally.


Image: Boeing will finalise the design of 737 MAX by mid next year, with the delivery scheduled to begin by 2017. Photo: Boeing.