Boeing has called for a fresh look at components harmonisation across the industry. Speaking at yesterday’s show, Alan Anderson, Boeing chief engineer, payloads systems, invited suppliers, airlines and OEMs to work together on standardising many essential parts.

Anderson says that his company is willing to host a forum to move discussions forward and has invited any interested parties to Boeing to continue the dialogue. Anderson says: “There is always tension between the cost of completely modifying a product versus assessing what airlines need in future and what should become standard.”

He stresses that he sees great value in suppliers offering their own versions of equipment, but he would like to see more commonality wherever it was practical. Anderson also says manufacturers and suppliers should be looking to the future now since aircraft programmes have a long shelf life, so platforms such as the Boeing 787 and Airbus A350XWB are ideal springboards for producing standard parts.

Anderson says: “There is no reason why with something like floor fasteners, we should develop two very different versions when they have the same functionality in most aircraft. Most airlines have mixed fleets and must carry large inventories. A few single standards across the board and specific mandates would be a huge savings.

“We would like to see suppliers work with suppliers and make suggestions to Airbus and Boeing. We would be happy to talk with Airbus, Bombardier and Embraer as well as suppliers and airlines. We need to be able to agree to align, to create a better set of problems and work hard to see how suppliers can remain competitive through this process.”

Thales’ Alan Pelligrini agrees the idea is a good one. “It is a positive step forward and we always welcome the opportunity to have further dialogue with the airframers and seat suppliers we work with.” Anderson is keen to see discussions continue in between shows and would like to see Aircraft Interiors Americas Expo become a forum for further debate.

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Source: Flight Daily News