Boeing Stock Re-Crashes On Heaviest Volume In 15 Years As 2nd Event Confirmed

Tyler Durden's picture

Thanks to some algo-based low-volume jiggery-pokery Boeing's stock managed to bounce off its 50DMA and get back up to VWAP (surprise). In the meantime, the overall volume has exploded to its highest since December 1998 - when Boeing was under a probe from Europe for price-collusion with Airbus (likely will be highest ever). The Dow recovered on this bounce too - until it was confirmed that a second Boeing 787 issue was confirmed by Thomson Airways in the UK.

Highest volume in 15 years (and likely will be highest volume ever)


as Boeing bounced then fell again to VWAP...


from Reuters

A Boeing 787 Dreamliner operated by Britain's Thomson Airways flying to the United States from northwest England was forced to return to Britain due to technical issues as a precaution on Friday, the airline said.The incident was unrelated to a fire aboard another Dreamliner operated by Ethiopian Airlines while on the ground at Britain's Heathrow airport.


"Thomson Airways can confirm that flight TOM126 travelling from Manchester to Sanford, Florida experienced a technical issue and the aircraft returned to Manchester Airport, as a precautionary measure," Thomson Airways, owned by TUI Travel , said in a statement.


The company added that passengers had disembarked and that its engineers were inspecting the aircraft in Manchester.

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Cult_of_Reason's picture

787 fire at LHR is right where the APU battery is sited that was supposed to have been sorted.

Boeing is praying for a lit cigar.

TuesdayBen's picture

The Boeing Corvair, unsafe at any altitude

Including on the ground

12ToothAssassin's picture

Maybe the crew merely wanted to avoid the race riots waiting in Sanford?

cifo's picture

From the first photo, it looks like the airplane is a write-off, or at least requires a complete overhaul.

Boeing stock may indeed go down to under 80, just because of that photo.


knukles's picture

It was flying to Sanford Florida?
Home of the Trayvon Martin trial.

Folks might not get there in time for the verdict.
Boeing'll have a riot on their hands!

fonestar's picture

BoeingTFD... the government has got their backs.  Too big to fail on take off.

Say What Again's picture

This is good for jobs.  Just think of all the people that will be "employed" by the gooberment to fix the problem.

old naughty's picture

They say good things come in 3s.

eh, nothin' good about it...So things come in 3s? BTFD.

Divided States of America's picture

Dude, this aint a crash...this is just a slight bruise...if Boeing drops to 80 bucks then thats a crash!

But I am sure future POMOs and PPT 3:30 ramp will buy it back up to new highs.

Remember its a dow component so they cant crash it.

And if a 1-2% drop is a template for a crash...then everyone here is expecting too much for a 900 point drop in the near future.

Cursive's picture

@Divided States

I hear ya, brother.  The saddest thing is some idiots or HFT bot bought it all the way up from par to $104 in minutes.  The market needs a crash like Paris Hilton needs penicillin.

fourchan's picture

blue houseshoe hates boeing.

1223pm's picture

More I think Dream-liner's parts have a short shelf-life.

Winston Smith 2009's picture

"The Boeing Corvair"

At least not as bad as the De Havilland Comet.

Parrotile's picture

Certainly not as bad as McDonnell-Douglas - who knowingly operated aircraft with faults that had previously resulted in significant crashes.

The metal fatigue problem with the Comet - the World's first pressurised - cabin airliner, was unknown to occur ar the time of design, and only relaised after careful crash investigation.  Lessons learned were passed on to all desoigners Worldwide - which is why airliners with pressurised cabins have small windows, with a generous corner radius to prevent stress cracking.

Winston Smith 2009's picture

"787 fire at LHR is right where the APU battery is sited that was supposed to have been sorted."

Not according to the image and document you posted:

The document shows the APU battery under the aircraft's mid-point.  The damage is way back on the top of the aircraft just in front of the tail. 

Cult_of_Reason's picture

The damage is way back on the top of the aircraft just in front of the tail.

The damage from the fire that you see is NOT where the fire started.

Winston Smith 2009's picture

Please link to documentation on where the fire started.

Winston Smith 2009's picture

Yeah, that one places it much better for the damage done.  Has anyone come out and actually said it's a battery yet?

Cult_of_Reason's picture

It was a major fire that even penetrated the jet's carbon fiber skin. It could take days (or even if they find melted batteries, Boeing will claim they cannot pinpoint the actual source).

I have been following Boeing for ~8 years (currently don't hold any direct BA or suppliers positions) and can assure you the company management is a bunch of pathological liars.

Ident 7777 economy's picture

This flies in the face of the remedial measures Boeing took to contain any issues with these batteries, to wit, complete confinment within vented stainless boxes ...

LET'S WAIT for the investiation before we JUMP to confusions ...

BraveSirRobin's picture

Nightmare liner, both for passengers and shareholders alike.

Winston Smith 2009's picture

It's a revolutionary aircraft in many ways.  You can expect this sort of thing. Hell, look up the sideways nose gear problem they had with the Airbus, not a revolutionary plane.

Parrotile's picture

Airbus not revolutionary?? Really?? Maybe you really need to take off the "Boeing / USA is Best" rose tinted glasses and see just why the US Commercial Aviation Industry is using every dirty trick in the book to discredit a far more advanced product.

Mind you there's certainly no love lost between Airbus and Boeing - and it would certainly be "interesting" if market pressure obliged a merger -

BattlegroundEurope2011's picture

The market is so fickle ;)

icanhasbailout's picture

If you can't stand the heat, get out of the cabin.






And watch out for fire trucks on the tarmac.

FieldingMellish's picture

I'm sure Boeing will spare no expense to repair the damage.... to its reputation.

Bam_Man's picture

This plane will do for Boeing what the Comet did for de Havilland.

Bringin It's picture

And the flaming Hastings Benz did for Mercedes.

Element's picture

Sad thing is, it's not actually a big problem, change the batteries back to conventional fare and reimburse the damaged aircraft and owners, and don't do it again. After all, it is otherwise a great jet.

You can understand two fires to get it permanently sorted, but a third time?

That does not compute.

SHRAGS's picture

Sorry, you don't have a clue.  The 787 is a no-engine bleed aircraft. Engine start is electrically powered (APU doesn't have a bleed system to power the start, unlike most other jets).  That is why they need such a high energy density battery - conventional won't do it.  Then there is the slight problem that the pressurization is also electrically powered, once again not taken from the engine or APU bleed system.  For the extended range operations (EROPS or the old ETOPS) you aren't going to be able to remain pressurized for an extended period of time (current EROPS is 300+ minutes) on a conventional battery.  In short, the 787 was designed around the energy density that Li-ion can provide -  Major systems depend upon it.

If they re-engineered to with conventional bleed/start/air-conditioning systems, the weight will come back up, and the performance will  be roughly similar to a 767-300W (winglets) - it is only marginally better seat cost per mile compared to the 767W today.  In other words, they have achieved nothing in all the 25+ billion of development costs.  They would have been better off just tweaking the 767.

Element's picture

Thanks for clarifying that, I didn't grasp the implications of not using engine bleed-air for the start. I'm used to seeing smaller jets start using conventional batteries, not even bleed-air, or not even using an APU or GPU for that matter.

But why is this an impediment to starting the much smaller APU turbine without Li batteries? That job should and would be entirely possible using conventional batteries (or else GPU, most parking bays or hangers can provide dedicated GPU power to start just an APU), without adding much weight to the jet. Or is that not solely an 'APU' battery, is it then powering/buffering the other systems after the APU is up, rather then just being recharged for the next APU start?

I get that the APU is running a motor-generator to power the main-engine starts, and to help recover the main-battery's contributions to starting, after the main engines are started.

SHRAGS's picture

Element, sorry, I shouldn't have been so harsh, peace.

Regarding engine start, it is the actual powerplant engines that are electric start, not just the APU.  You are correct, the APU only needs a small battery (some aircraft have dual batteries for redundancy).  However, the load for main engine is considerable.  We can actually do a "cross-bleed" start if our APU is inop, but as you indicate that requires a Ground Power Unit (GPU) to supply pneumatic air to start one engine on the bay, pushback, increase engine thrust on the operative engine to start the other with the bleed air from the first. 

For the B787 main engine start is BATTERY ONLY, without any contribution from the APU (there is no bleed ducting from the APU).  The APU is pure electrical redundancy (dual generators IIRC).  This saves bleed ducting & weight from the APU and between the engines.  Remember, the aim of this aircraft is to do 330 minutes EROPS/ETOPS.  This allows any global city pair combination via a great circle track (shortest flight distance) while being max 6.5 hours from the nearest runway ON ONE ENGINE or one engine generator + APU generator.

Being bleedless has implications for other systems - hydraulics are "localized", ie integrated pump & actuator, just like the A380 (saves plumbing), brakes are electric, a rejected takeoff has the highest discharge requirement from the battery.  Most of these system "just work" without electricity on simpler Boeings (some even have Air Driven Pumps (ADP) that use bleed air to generate hydraulic pressure).

So as you can see, being bleedless now plunges the B787 into being a true "Electric Jet" with big discharge requirements and it may be needed for redundancy for a long period of time.  As I said, it would appear that the designers appear to optimised the aircraft around the fact that it does have such an (apparent) magnificent store of energy & redundancy in the Li-ion battery, and so became dependant upon it working correctly.  Other issues with installing other battery types this late in the design include possible weight and balance problems affecting the payload as well as increased weight.  This is potentially a very big issue for the 787.


Element's picture

No problem, not offended. Thank you for the further clarifications.

I would have naively presumed the APU would auto-spool to ramp its generator output to provide an auxiliary DC contribution to main engine starting, in conjunction with the main batteries, and once started the generators of mains and APU would run the systems, and recharge the main batteries (are you absolutely sure it doesn't do that, if so, why doesn't it?).

btw, not wanting to quibble but if the APU is "pure redundancy", electrically, then it is therefore buffering the batteries, and is constantly replenishing their electrons during main-engine starting, and therefore it is participating and contributing to the engine start process, it can't therefore be considered a "battery only" start. If it is a "battery only" process then you could start the mains without the APU generators running at all - can it do that in the bay?

I understand your ETOPS requirements point, and the need for electrons for heating, humidifying and distribution of the aircon, and pressurization/pumping of hydraulics, actuators, brakes (! why make them electric?! nothing wrong with ABS hydaulic carbon-fiber brakes!), avionics, lights, etc. But what these hot batteries really imply is the generators on this jet don't provide enough excess electrons to cover all this load, without over-taxing and over-draining, and thus over-heating the batteries, causing some thermal excursions and runaways (due energy density, faster heating, and lower cooling area, thus slower cooling).

So aren't more capable main generators and higher continuous DC head-room, the real requirement to take the duty-load off the batteries so they don't get so physically drained and stressed, and to conform with the ETOPS requirements?

I realize this will require more fuel to get more electrons, so would impinge on fuel-flow economy and ETOPS cruise, and thus range attenuation (and maybe some negligible weight addition, but same basic balance condition).

Why are more capable generators not a viable solution here for the operational cruise limitations of the system?

Or is it just the too-expensive real answer, which Boeing wants to avoid?

In which case you add one more battery, as overhead for starting the mains, and up-rate the APU generator output to contribute to the mains starting.

This seems solvable to me. Time (groundings) and costs are the problem.

SHRAGS's picture

From what I can make out (not endorsed on 787) one issue is the discharge/ charge cycling of the batteries due to engine start and ground ops.  Think about it, engine start x2  on the battery heat produced in discharge phase, taxi at ambient temp, takeoff, then whack max rate charge to get the battery up to full capacity during climb & early cruise BEFORE one hour of flight (at single engine cruise speed) elapses.  The ETOPS area begins when greater than one hours flight time at the nominated single engine speed for a twin.  So therefore prior to entering the ETOPS area you must meet the ETOPS certification requirements - as an example on the 737 we have to have 3 generators operating, no flight control / hydraulic & two engines running.  I suspect that the 787 needs to have the batteries fully charged prior to ETOPS entry (most of its flying).

The consequence is that you have a huge discharge /charge cycle at elevated temperatures (ground / climb) without the assistance of cruise temps (typically -56C) for cooling. 


If it is a "battery only" process then you could start the mains without the APU generators running at all - can it do that in the bay?


My understanding is that it can, Boeing would want to be able to dispatch without the APU under the Minimum Equipment List (MEL).  I doubt ETOPS dispatch is possible without the APU.



So aren't more capable main generators and higher continuous DC head-room, the real requirement to take the duty-load off the batteries so they don't get so physically drained and stressed, and to conform with the ETOPS requirements?

I suspect that each engine driven generator can supply the entire critical system electrical requirements.  The 737-8 does,  we can operate all electrical systems single engine without loadshedding.  If we get down to that point, the checklist says start the APU, to once again have a redundant generator. 

Why does it require a big battery?  Without knowing the exact certification rules or engineering (way above my pay grade), I would suggest redundancy for the flight controls (electrically powered hydraulics), brakes & air-con.  One thing to consider is a failure once inside the ETOPS area.  Consider entering the ETOPS area with all systems operative, then you have a failure of the APU.  With a big battery & redundancy, no problems, without a battery you have lost one level of redundancy, and may be required to land at the nearest available airport.   Commerically this isn't so good for a relativley minor problem.  Basically the ETOPS certification for the 737 say once inside the ETOPS area, unless you have an engine failure, loss of two generators or flight control issue keep going & don't worry about it.  The key would be ETOPS redudancy and ETOPS time (734 is 120 min, 738 is only 180 minute, 777 is 330 min), probably a main and alternate source of power for each system required to land the aircraft and the statistical risk of a subsequent failure of a power source.  Perhaps there is an aero engineer that could give better guidence on the exact certification requirements for multiple power sources.


Element's picture

Yes, and by all means someone else please comment if you have anything to add on that.

I see your ETOPS points, and well made, but even so, more MAIN and AUX power generation does still mean that the batteries will cool down more quickly, from transient and continuous loads, in taxi, and climb-out phases - no?

Less continuous and transient discharge means less recharge = less heat to dissipate

As you say, there is potential for excess overhead with one engine running and the APU, which suggests there's for some reason too much reliance on drawing from the batteries instead, during normal operation ... almost certainly to reduce fuel-burn rate, via limiting generator operation, and thus reduce load on engines.


So isn't it a matter of generating more electrons (burning a bit more fuel), and relying on discharging electrons from the batteries less, to cruise and operate systems normally? Because the load (from what you describe) seems excessively biased to drawing down the batteries first, as a main electron supply buffer, than to burning just a bit more fuel to make sure the batteries can remain a bit cooler, and to cool faster, so to be ready to meet any transient load, and recover more quickly.

There has to be a better battery-generator duty balance here.

And we seem to have agreed the APU batteries can be replaced with a more conventional array, with little impact.

SHRAGS's picture

This is starting to get beyond my area of competence to explain the certification requirements.  As to why they did it?  Simple, weight.  Weight if the enemy of medium/longhaul commercial aviation.  The weigh of everything, fuel, equipement & aircraft.  To give you a ball park indication, fuel consumption is 3.5% of weight per hour, ie we add a ton of anything, we burn 35kg addtional per hour just to carry it.  On a typical longhaul flight, it is not unusual to see an additional burn of ~300 to 350kg per ton just to carry that ton.  Given the wafer thin margins in the industry, Boeing touting an aircraft that burnt ~25% less than anything else on the market was too irresistable for the accountants. 

The only way Boeing could do this was to strip out weight, as the laws of physics, unlike modern economics, are yet to be repealed.  I have a feeling reducing the use of bleed air was also a fuel saving (I no facts to back that up).   However, given the wing box issues (+6 tons) and other weight increases, performance has not met initial savings.  In time, the later production aircraft will progressively be slimmed down with in-service engineering, improving performance.  But at this stage, it is only marginally better than the 767W, which has had much in-service tweaking. 


Here's an interesting comparion 787 vs 767-300W with in-service data: piano-X Boeing 787 update and CO2 emissions perspective

For a typical mission carrying 22 metric tonnes over 5000 nm (roughly HND-FRA), the block fuel burn of the B787-8 is calculated to be 50.1 tonnes. This compares to 50.7 tonnes for the B767-300ERW based on nominal performance (no in-service deterioration) and common reserve-rule assumptions that can be accessed via the models. Plots of fuel burn as a function of distance and payload are given below at the same transparent conditions.


Element's picture



"Given the wafer thin margins in the industry, Boeing touting an aircraft that burnt ~25% less than anything else on the market was too irresistable for the accountants."

I think we are witnessing that this is untrue. They need a more realistic figure to reflect running generators more and reducing the duty load-bias towards the batteries.

"I have a feeling reducing the use of bleed air was also a fuel saving (I no facts to back that up).

You may be right there, I'm aware of a jet that can not supply de-icing bleed-air at max altitude, purportedly due to the inability to hold that altitude, so it may be a case of it chewing more fuel below this, due to the AOA increase, and air density drag increase also. Thus getting rid of bleed-air should theoretically save fuel. But I'm guessing resistance-heating the leading edges for de-icing must therefore be a huge fuel-intensive drain on the electrical system, as well ... yup ... what you said about laws of physics not being repealed.

I've done calculations in the past that showed the operational fuel cost over 5,000 hours of a small jet with respect to its purchase price - the fuel cost was about 2.25 times higher than the purchase price at 5,000 hrs. 

</brain hemorrhage>

ebworthen's picture

Redundant mechanical systems.

A geared starter is a pretty simple device; pulls a lot of CCA's but once you get "bang" you are done.

Sacrificing redundancy and safety for a passenger airframe makes no sense to me, but I'm not an MBA.

p.s. - Thanks to both of you for the informative dialogue.

SHRAGS's picture

I'm aware of a jet that can not supply de-icing bleed-air at max altitude, purportedly due to the inability to hold that altitude

Correct, off topic that's a funny story too - at typical cruise alt, temp is ~-56C, and icing conditions only exist above -40C and in visible moisture.  Crews were turning the wing anti-ice on in the visible moisture (cloud) in cruise below -40C, causing the engine bleeds to trip off as it couldn't supply the demanded load.  It doesn't end there, as now you have lost bleed air & pressurization and its time for an emergency descent.  People forget how hostile the environment is just 3 feet from where we spend our working lives.  When things go wrong, they can go spectacularly wrong with a cascading effect.

Regarding your fuel calcs for a small jet, I'm not surprised with the cost of fuel.  Seat mile fuel use is ~3.5 litres per hundred Km in a large transport, but much much higher in small jets as your ratio of aircraft:seats is much higher, wikipedia has a good comparison: Fuel economy in aircraft.


Element's picture

The topic came up because that aircraft encountered severe-icing at FL390, others had more limited issues at even higher in visible moisture. Not sure what OAT/ISA was.

It went like this:

Costs - Fuel $AUD/km   

Max sustained thrust $/km = $2.91 (M=0.78)
STD cruise $/km = $2.47
Economic cruise $/km = $2.11
Long-range cruise $/km = $1.82 (M=0.63)


firstdivision's picture

The 787 is the Drealiner for Boeing Short-Sellers

max2205's picture

PPT WILL HELP OUT at 3:30.  Like a sponge

NOTW777's picture

dont worry phil the bow will fix this - in a few minutes - cant have a red market - unacceptable

these fires and problems are better than expected

Cursive's picture



Fresh from bedding a broke and busted GM, CNBC's Phil LeBeau now prepares to go deep inside lovingly, metaphorically caress deify Ford CEO and soon-to-be-patron-American-automotive-saint Alan Mulally. Watch him do it November 10th at 9 PM ET/PT on CNBC.

Cursive's picture

Haven't been the same since the C-suite moved to Chi-town.  Gangsta.