CNBC report on Reaction Engines

Reaction Engines, UK based group.

Expected 4 hours journey time to Australia, MACH 5 engines. The SABRE A2 has received funding though the LAPCAT (Long-Term Advanced Propulsion Concepts and Technologies) I and II projects (FP6 and FP7) of the European Union to investigate and develop the feasibility of hypersonic aircraft.

The Scimitar engine for the SABRE A2 is a derivative of the SABRE (Synergistic Air-Breathing Rocket Engine) engine technology

Air is pre-cooled at rapid rate before entering Jet engine.

The incorporation of lightweight heat exchangers in the main thermodynamic cycles of these engines has potential to improve efficiency.

Boeing Dreamliner flies again

The Boeing dreamliner has made some return to service with operations beginning in Africa after the US Federal Aviation Administration issued an “air worthiness directive” allowing 787s to fly after being fitted with the modified battery.

Boeing says it put 200,000 “engineer hours” into fixing the problem, with staff working round the clock. They have not been able to find the source of the burning which took place which grounded the all 787s, instead they have had to identify all the possible ways the heating could take place and introduce measures to

Addis Ababa to Nairobi

Addis Ababa to Nairobi

Aircraft maintenance reports

The FAA publishes alerts regarding aviation maintenance, as a way to share information between those who maintain and operate ‘aviation products’. For metallurgists or materials scientists it may be interesting to see what sort of problems occur and can be remedied during maintenance. Good to see these appear rather than accident reports.

Boeing 787 Dreamliner Launch

The Boeing Dreamliner was launched for the first test flight yesterday.

The Boeing 787 is around the same size as 767-300. However the 787 is planned to be 20% more fuel-efficient than the 767. The efficiency comes equally from improvements in the engines, aerodynamics and reduced weight by use of composite materials, and the use of improved systems.

20% improvement in efficiency should translate into a 15% saving in operational efficiency.

Each plane can interchangeably use either the General Electric GEnx or Rolls-Royce Trent 1000, due to the design of a common interface. The Rolls-Royce engine was used for the test-flight.

Materials In action: Plane wings

This video on youtube shows very clearly the large deflections of the wings as the Boeing 747-400 is maneuvering during landing.

Blog post showing wing deflection test for Boeing 777

7/8/7 Dreamliner unveiled

Boeing had an event on Sunday to show off their Dreamliner aircraft. The ‘roll-out’ could be seen on Satellite TV aswell as being broadcast across the internet.

Dreamliner picture from BBC
Picture from BBC – click here to read there article

The plane makes extensive use of Carbon-fibre composites to reduce the weight of the fuselage. This represents a large change in the technology use in manufacturing, replacing aluminum which has been the material used in fuselage’s since the introduction of the commercial airliner.


Carbon-fibre composites: 50%
Aluminium: 20%
Titanium: 15%
Steel: 10%
Other: 5%



The Typhoon Eurofighter began operations on 30th June, assuming responsibility for the southern element of the United Kingdom’s Quick Reaction Alert force, defending UK airspace against suspicious aircraft.

Read about it here: RAF news / Eurofighter