May 2004 
Volume 03, Issue 1 
Around Boeing


Sue Redington visits a worm adoption station at Earth Day Kansas 2004Had you been at the Sedgwick County Zoo in Wichita, Kan., on April 22, you could have adopted a worm, complete with adoption papers and already "trained" to make compost. Or constructed a water molecule out of gumdrops and toothpicks. Or examined the "micro world" through a microscope. You could have commemorated Earth Day with about 13,000 other guests of Boeing Wichita.

Our annual Earth Day Kansas, begun in 1997 in response to a community survey, has grown into the largest Earth Day observation in the state of Kansas. The event is managed and staffed by Boeing employees, with hands-on activities provided by government, civic, education and business groups, including 10 Boeing organizations and clubs.

The public wanted its corporate neighbors to care about the environment, K-12 education, and getting their employees involved in the community. For eight years, we've been doing it all at Earth Day Kansas.


Leaning into aviation

A team uses Lean principles to manufacture eight Lego-like 777sThe Boeing "Leaning into Aviation" professional development seminar at the 15th annual Women in Aviation conference elicited chaos, then calm. And that's exactly what Boeing leaders planned.

After four hours of hands-on learning, attendees went home with a better understanding of the value of incorporating Lean principles into their work.

Jan Martinson, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems Lean Enterprise director, said the 2004 conference, held in Reno, Nev., was an excellent opportunity to teach others how Boeing is using Lean principles to reduce cycle times and costs dramatically, which ultimately benefits customers as well as the company.



A Boeing Delta II rocket lifts offGravity Probe B, a NASA satellite that will validate two key aspects of Albert Einstein's general theory of relativity, launched April 20 aboard a Boeing-built Delta II rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

Following a 75-minute flight, the two-stage rocket deployed the spacecraft to a circular-polar orbit, approximately 400 nautical miles above the Earth.

A Delta II 7920-10 configuration launch vehicle was used for the mission. It features the Boeing Rocketdyne RS-27A main engine, nine solid rocket boosters and a 10-foot diameter payload fairing.

"Our Delta team did a great job in preparing and launching this extraordinary mission," said Will Trafton, vice president and general manager, Boeing Expendable Launch Systems. "We're proud to continue our support for NASA in their quest to learn more about our universe, and we're looking forward to hearing the results of this important science experiment."

Gravity Probe B will test two of Einstein's 1916 predictions, made as part of his general theory of relativity. The two predictions are the Geodetic effect--the amount by which the Earth warps local space time in which it resides--and the frame-dragging effect, or the amount by which the Earth drags local space time with it as it rotates.

Up next for the Delta team: the launch of a U.S. Air Force Global Positioning System satellite next month aboard a Delta II rocket.


Boeing has selected two engine types, the General Electric GENX and Rolls-Royce Trent 1000, for its all-new Boeing 7E7 Dreamliner, an airplane that will provide the world's airlines with exceptional efficiency and environmental performance.

"The General Electric and Rolls-Royce engines will enable the 7E7 to fly higher, faster, farther, cleaner, quieter and more efficiently than comparable airplanes," said 7E7 Senior Vice President Mike Bair.

The 7E7 will reduce fuel use--and associated emissions--by 20 percent over today's comparably sized airplanes.


The Boeing Satellite Systems-built Superbird-6 satellite successfully launched April 15 from Cape Canaveral Air Station, Fla. The Boeing 601 satellite will provide business telecommunication services for Japan's Space Communications Corp. Its steerable spot beam will let SCC provide higher data rate Ka-band service to areas across a broad swath of the Pacific region.

"With this successful launch and signal acquisition behind us, we now look ahead to several weeks of in-orbit testing to validate that Superbird-6 is ready to support SCC's business," said Dave Ryan, BSS vice president and general manager.

BSS also built Superbird-C, launched in July 1997, and Superbird-4, launched in February 2000.


Two Asian carriers last month publicly announced orders for Boeing 777 airplanes.

EVA Airways on April 14 said it had ordered eight Boeing 777-300ERs in addition to the airline's 2000 launch order for four 777-300ERs and three 777-200LRs. EVA's new 777s are scheduled for delivery from 2005 through 2009.

Also that day, Cathay Pacific Airways said it had placed a firm order for two Boeing 777-300 jetliners. The new airplanes will be delivered in April 2005 and July 2006 and will be used on the airline's medium-haul regional routes.


Boeing presented its premier supplier award to 13 companies from three countries in recognition of these suppliers' commitment to excellence.

"It takes great partners to help our team achieve new heights, and these suppliers are at the top of their class," said Jim Morris, vice president of Supplier Management for Boeing Commercial Airplanes and chair of the Boeing Supplier Management Process Council, at a March 31 ceremony in Seattle to honor the recipients.

The 13 Suppliers of the Year were selected from a field of more than 10,900 Boeing suppliers. The winning suppliers in each category were chosen on statistical measurements of quality, on-time delivery, post-delivery support and cost during the 12-month period preceding September 2003. They also were evaluated on their ability to anticipate and respond to changing customer requirements.

The 2003 Suppliers of the Year, along with their product category or industry, are:

  • Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, Tokyo: avionics.
  • Moog Inc., Torrance, Calif.: electronics/hydraulics/mechanical.
  • Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. Aerospace Systems Works, Nagoya, Japan: major structures.
  • Excel Manufacturing Inc., Wichita, Kan.: purchased outside production.
  • Ducommun Technologies, Carson, Calif.: common aerospace commodities.
  • Air Cruisers Company, Wall Township, N.J.: interiors.
  • Pacific Aero Tech Inc., Kent, Wash., and RUAG Aerospace, Emmen, Switzerland: aerospace support.
  • Clements General Construction Inc., Covington, Wash., and WinWare Inc., Marietta, Ga.: nonproduction.
  • Onamac Industries, Everett, Wash.: small business.
  • All Points Logistics Inc., Gainesville, Ga.: small Minority Business Enterprise/ small disadvantaged business.
  • AeroFlite Enterprises Inc., Brea, Calif.: woman-owned small businesses.


Nelda Lee, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems manager of TacAir IPT-Test and Evaluation in St. Louis, was recently inducted into the Aviation Pioneer Hall of Fame. The announcement took place at the recent 2004 Women in Aviation conference, held in Reno, Nev.

Lee, a pilot herself, was inducted for her "notable contributions to the advancement of aviation."


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