Boeing equivalent of Concorde

Old Dec 31, 15, 12:14 am
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Boeing equivalent of Concorde

In the JL lounge at HND there is a model of a Boeing 2707, a Concorde lookalike. Bigger than Concorde it was slightly fatter at the front end than further back so presumably meant that a nice F cabin was planned.

Wikipedia states that 122 buying reservations were placed with Boeing. There must have been a point where supersonic travel was about to take off globally but it never happened.
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Old Dec 31, 15, 2:39 am
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I have never researched the 2707 however I think it was certainly not a realistic design. It was hugely complex (swing wing) and was meant to carry a lot of passengers. I think the technical problems would never have been resolved (I doubt if this could be built even now). I would also expect it to have a very short range.

Its very difficult to make these aircraft profitable, sadly I don't expect to see another passenger supersonic aircraft in my lifetime.
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Old Dec 31, 15, 3:03 am
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Originally Posted by Greenpen View Post
In the JL lounge at HND there is a model of a Boeing 2707, a Concorde lookalike. Bigger than Concorde it was slightly fatter at the front end than further back so presumably meant that a nice F cabin was planned.
...which, on Concorde, would have been a lower class than the rest of the cabin!
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Old Dec 31, 15, 3:17 am
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The folks at BAC and Aerospatiale (the original UK and French manufacturers of Concorde pre-Airbus) always hoped the Boeing 2707 would go ahead and make it into service.

Whilst it certainly would be a head on competitior to Concorde, they predicted that if the USA did not have a competing supersonic pax plane in service, both public and political opinion over there would turn against the European plane and whole concept of supersonic travel. And they were completely right......if the timeline is examined, the USA were initially very pro-supersonic travel whilst the 2707 was a reality. But only after their own SST cancellation did the protests against Concorde then seriously ramp up over the pond regarding noise levels, potential ozone layer damage etc....this largely coming from the FAA, Boeing etc whose technological pride and ego must have taken a huge dent with the cancellation of the 2707.

In one of the ironies that still makes me smile, the noise profile of Concorde on take-off from JFK was a heavy focus with much protesting and doom mongering taking place. The NYC mayor and Port of NYC (and many others) formally stated that unless Concorde could repeatably demonstrate maximum noise would be below a certain amount, it would absolutely NOT be permitted to operate into JFK under any circumstances. All sorts of medical experts were also wheeled out to explain how noise above this level would be detrimental to health etc etc.

But amusingly, after trials took place with a specific departure profile and with lots of high-tech noise measuring equipment installed at JFK and in the NYC suburbs close by, Concorde was shown to be easily capable of operating at some dB below this maximum level. However the same measuring equipment also showed the Boeing 707s and McD DC8s that had been routinely operating for around a decade out of JFK were frequently exceeding this noise level....the very level that the port authorities and medical "experts" were saying must not be exceeded under any circumstances!

Much egg on faces resulted over the pond and BAC / Aerospatiale mischieviously enquired as to whether the 707's and DC8s (the pride of the USA civil aircraft industry at the time) would of course now be immediately banned from using JFK? After all, the noise level they were generating had been clearly stated as being very detrimental to the health of the folks underneath the departure route...so surely this rule must equally apply!! Of course it didn't though...

The rest is history and after a struggle, Concorde eventually was allowed to use JFK.....but the world of supersonic travel would probably have been very different if the competing Boeing 2707 had made it into service. And pretty much all aircraft historians agree that Concorde would probably have sold many more frames too if there had been a competing USA plane in service.....

Last edited by BOH; Dec 31, 15 at 4:04 am
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Old Dec 31, 15, 3:29 am
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Originally Posted by wytco0 View Post
Its very difficult to make these aircraft profitable, sadly I don't expect to see another passenger supersonic aircraft in my lifetime.
You might have a pleasant surprise then

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/n...nic-again.html

What would be rather good would be if BA had a small fleet of these aircraft for a First+ premium, 300tp per sector TATL. Even if the they could make it break even the high profile and draw on high spend frequent flyers would be good.

Last edited by Worcester; Dec 31, 15 at 3:34 am
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Old Dec 31, 15, 5:08 am
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The Boeing 2707 concept was an ugly pig compared to the beauty of Concorde.
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Old Dec 31, 15, 8:08 am
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There's a B2707 model at the TWA museum at MKC. (Painted in TWA colors, of course.)
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Old Dec 31, 15, 10:16 am
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The SST (nobody ever referred to it as the "2707") was a "Hail Mary" attempt by Boeing to keep its commercial aircraft division afloat. It was always seen as a joint civilian-military spec project anyway; it was clear that Boeing's production of heavy bombers was over and Douglas and Lockheed were eating Boeing's lunch on heavy transport planes, so they wanted some "look at me" product that would attract enough US government R&D money to keep things going.

The 747 was just into big time production and Boeing was going through a giant "learning curve" reduction in employment, especially in the engineering fields; Seattle-area employment at Boeing fell by something like 75% between 1968 and 1972. The "Boeing Bust" got so bad that some people put up a famous billboard -



By the time Concorde was flying revenue pax the oil crisis and environmental awareness had fully taken hold and it was clear commercial SSTs were relics. When the Soviet Tu-144 crashed in Paris (1973) it was all over for the breed. By that time in Seattle, Boeing was turning around and ramping back up; the SST/2707's demise was not thought about very much.
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Old Dec 31, 15, 1:15 pm
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Boeing found that the swing wing design wouldn't work with then current technology. The mechanicals would be far too heavy - they ate up all the payload so they couldn't carry passengers.

In reality the SSTs were simply a little too far ahead of their time. The Concorde was seriously impeded by the use of afterburners. Boeing had to make a bet on speed versus volume. They chose volume, Aerospatial-BAC choose speed. But neither could really have predicted how much fuel prices would come to dominate years later.
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Old Dec 31, 15, 2:48 pm
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Originally Posted by Cloudship View Post
The Concorde was seriously impeded by the use of afterburners....
Very wrong.....and a very common misunderstanding. Concorde only used afterburners on take off and to accelerate through the sound barrier. Not used at any other time and certainly not during supersonic cruise.

It was the competing Soviet Tu144 that was compromised by afterburners.....or reheat to us Europeans The Tu144 needed to use reheat during supersonic cruise so had serious range problems.

So lets not rewrite history from across the pond eh?
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Old Dec 31, 15, 8:21 pm
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I recall building a model of the Boeing 2707/SST. And it was hardly an "ugly pig."

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Old Jan 1, 16, 5:17 am
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Originally Posted by BOH View Post
Very wrong.....and a very common misunderstanding. Concorde only used afterburners on take off and to accelerate through the sound barrier. Not used at any other time and certainly not during supersonic cruise.

It was the competing Soviet Tu144 that was compromised by afterburners.....or reheat to us Europeans The Tu144 needed to use reheat during supersonic cruise so had serious range problems.

So lets not rewrite history from across the pond eh?
And there was no other technology available in the early 1960s design era to achieve supersonic flight.
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Old Jan 1, 16, 5:32 am
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Supersonic commercial flight is a perfect example of something that is technologically possible but economically undesirable. Speed is no longer the driver of airline revenue. Volume is. Concorde was fast, but extremely wasteful in terms of fuel and did not carry that many people. Airlines these days are considering how to get as many asses in seats as possible, not how to get there fast.
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Old Jan 1, 16, 9:25 am
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Originally Posted by DrDiarrhea View Post
Speed is no longer the driver of airline revenue.
It's very hard to overtake the speed of light. Video conferencing, Skype, SMS... all fantasies in 1968. The only person I ever knew who was a regular user of Concorde was my big shot ex-roomie who was the comptroller of Aramco and who would take the Concorde if the company's 747 was in the wrong place. Cost of fuel? What cost is that?
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Old Jan 1, 16, 1:24 pm
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Originally Posted by BOH View Post
The folks at BAC and Aerospatiale (the original UK and French manufacturers of Concorde pre-Airbus) always hoped the Boeing 2707 would go ahead and make it into service.
.
I thought the original French company was Sud. Later, the company merged to form SNIAS. At the time of the first flight of the Concorde, the company name was Sud.
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