The first Australian Wedgetail aircraft rolled out Oct. 31 during a ceremony
at the Boeing plant in Renton, Wash. The 737-700 will be transformed into
a platform for an Airborne Early Warning and Control System. Modifications
to the aircraft begin in 2003. Both Australia and Turkey have signed billion-dollar
contracts with Boeing Integrated Defense Systems to develop AEW&C systems.
Fourth member of 777 family debuts
Boeing unveiled the fourth member of the Boeing 777 family, the 777-300ER
(extended range) jetliner last month before a crowd of more than 4,000
employees, suppliers, partners and airline customers at its Everett, Wash.,
production facility. Boeing also broadcast the ceremony live over the
Web to thousands of viewers worldwide.
"Our original vision of growing the 777 program into a family of five
models that safely and efficiently serves the needs of our customers is
becoming a reality," said Alan Mulally, president and chief executive
officer of Boeing Commercial Airplanes.
The 777-300ER is the first of two Longer-Range 777 models Boeing will
complete. Boeing and General Electric Aircraft Engines launched both the
777-300ER and a second jetliner, the 777-200LR (longer-range), in February
2000. Boeing created the new models to meet demand for airplanes with
additional flexibility to serve longer non-stop routes.
Long Beach brings work in-house
More than 600 members of the Boeing team in Long Beach, Calif., celebrated
in mid-November the acquisition of a new work responsibilitythe wing-join
step in 717 productionthat will now be done in-house instead of by suppliers.
Speaking to the crowd, 717 program Vice President and Long Beach Site
Manager Jim Phillips applauded his team for all the progress made toward
transforming the facility into a Lean manufacturing site and achieving
Phillips, joined by Bill Schultz, president of Local 148 of the United
Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America, also
praised the team for the success they had achieved in launching the 717
moving assembly line and reducing wasted production movement. The 717
team also has developed a new delivery process that cuts costs for both
the program and customers, slashed facilities and maintenance expenses,
and implemented changes that help suppliers lower prices.
'Frontiers' to replace
FORUM magazine recipients will be seeing Boeing Frontiers
in its place starting this month. Boeing previously circulated FORUM
to airline customers; it contained news and information about Boeing Commercial
Airplanes' business initiatives, products and services. Each monthly issue
of Frontiers includes the same information plus detailed coverage
of Boeing's other business units.
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