Yet another aviation thread.

March 31st, 2017 at 3:25:59 AM permalink
Pacomartin
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
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It's interesting that the TSA would rank Mexico City as more important for pre-clearance than Cancun. MEX is about twice as many passengers as CUN and my guess is that very few foreign nationals are boarding flights from CUN to the USA.

Tying into our other discussion about potential routes for our 45 passenger supersonic Boom technology aircraft. As was pointed out, it doesn't mean that much to take a fast plane if it is not accompanied by smoother operations on the ground. Could Aruba be the showcase for wealthy New Yorkers to try out supersonic travel?

Presumably, if people try flying to Aruba they will begin lobbying for supersonic flights from JFK to LAX.

March 31st, 2017 at 8:38:19 AM permalink
Nareed
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Quote: Pacomartin
It's interesting that the TSA would rank Mexico City as more important for pre-clearance than Cancun.


I'd love preclearance at MEX.

But, you know, the US could boost an alternative airport if it set up the preclearance at TLC instead. All airlines would move massive amounts of US flights there, and might even route their flights to Europe through JFK, and to Asia through LAX, SFO or San Diego.
If Trump where half as smart as he thinks he is, he'd be twice as smart as he really is.
March 31st, 2017 at 5:58:38 PM permalink
Nareed
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Quote: Aussie
Preclearence is a huge advantage IMO. So much more convenient. I've entered LAX flying from BNE & MEL and at JFK flying from LHR and on each occasion the time spent going through immigration was excessive.


I cleared JFK, let's see, once MEX-JFK in transit to Tel-Aviv, then on the way back, now in transit to MEX, and a few years alter MEX-JFK for a short visit.

I don't recall what it was like. So I can't say. I'm pretty sure on the return from Tel-Aviv was quick because we arrived very early in the morning. I do recall waiting by a bookstore until it opened because I wanted to buy "Cosmos" (hard cover), and I managed it right before having to run to catch the plane home.

Offhand I'd say they were average, because I tend to remember only the really long waits. But I can't say for sure.


Quote:
EDIT: Preclearance can't be optional because the plane lands at what is effectively a domestic gate. You walk off the plane straight to the baggage claim then straight out the door. There are no immigration facilities at all.


I said my thinking wasn't at its most clear.

But I imagine this causes problems, when clueless tourists returning home don't pre-clear and are then not allowed to board...
If Trump where half as smart as he thinks he is, he'd be twice as smart as he really is.
March 31st, 2017 at 11:29:57 PM permalink
Pacomartin
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
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I am still thinking about Nareed's comments that nations may relax their over land restrictions on supersonic flight to increase traffic. Flights to South America can be just as long or longer than flights to Europe. I wonder if they will try and encourage supersonic flights to attract wealthy visitors.

Buenos Aires to
MIA 4,406 mi
MEX 4,584 mi
JFK 5,282 mi

JFK to Athens: 4,941 mi



If you think about it, Mauritania is the last place in the world you would think about if you talk about A380 service. But Emirates is flying their with an A380


I think it is a lot more believable that someone would want to fly supersonic to Buenos Aires than to fly first class on an A380 to Mauritania.
April 1st, 2017 at 4:13:41 AM permalink
Fleastiff
Member since: Oct 27, 2012
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Rich people do not make travel decisions based on pennies or minutes. So shaving a few of those off a flight doesn't make sense. Mauritania is an ATC reporting point for air traffic from South America and its a hotbed for oil and mining companies fllying their executives and security armies in and out of the area. Most private armies are Saudi Arabian/Bush Family owned, if they want service to Mauritania they will get it. Oil, copper, cocoa, diamonds play a role, some rich tourist does not.

Venezuela has bargain prices on everything now... but rich tourists are not flocking there.
April 1st, 2017 at 5:18:31 AM permalink
Pacomartin
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
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Quote: Fleastiff
Rich people do not make travel decisions based on pennies or minutes. So shaving a few of those off a flight doesn't make sense.


I made a huge mistake in my post.

I didn't mean Mauritania, I meant Mauritius. Mauritius is more of a vacation destination.

Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport, Mauritius (MRU) has fewer than 4 million passengers per year, and frankly a single daily A380 can bring 300K seats per year into the airport.

The designers of the A380 never imagined the jet flying to remote island airports. But the airline found a market in tourists who seem to want to fly luxury class to their vacation homes.




While the designers of a 45 seat supersonic aircraft are thinking of businessmen flying to important meetings at major financial centers, I think they may find a market for the wealthy who simply want to get to the resorts faster.

Plus, as Nareed pointed out, the more routes over water that get flown, the bigger the lobbying group will grow to want supersonic transcontinental flights. These Boom aircraft do not make noise like a Concorde. The ban on supersonic over land flights may not last forever.

For 30 years I have simply assumed that supersonic commercial transport for the 21st century would be primarily concerned with the California to Asia market. I am still trying to wrap my mind around the financial viability of a plane that is incapable of serving these routes.
April 1st, 2017 at 10:03:37 AM permalink
Fleastiff
Member since: Oct 27, 2012
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Quote: Pacomartin
I didn't mean Mauritania, I meant Mauritius. Mauritius is more of a vacation destination.
Yeah, I get the two confused also. Mauritius offers scenery and luxury, but at a price: no "incidents" can take place there. Not ever. Oh, occasional pilferage of minor articles from luggage, but they do have to be minor and only very occasional, else they do not take place. If you leave your luxury hotel room you can not suddenly return for a box of biscuits while two maids are in your room rifling your jewelry. Such incidents do not take place and it is very inconsiderate of foreign visitors to die on their honeymoon all because of a sudden urge for a few biscuits. There is no crime in Mauritius. None. Therefore hotel maids are not arrested for crime, any crime. The bride must have strangled herself after having the audacity to enter her room when the maids thought she would be out for the day.

Also if a derelict hull of a capsized cattamaran floats into Mauritius waters, any evidence that would be of interest to the families and a formal maritime inquest will simply disappear back under the waves somewhere once a large, wealthy corporation with lawyers and press agents contacts the Mauritious government. After all, nothing unpleasant happens in vacation-paradise Mauritius. No scandal washes up on their shores. No criminal acts performed in other countries wash up on their shores. Everything is beautiful in Mauritious. Nothing bad happens in Mauritius. Never.
April 1st, 2017 at 11:07:15 AM permalink
Pacomartin
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Right now Emirates has two 5th freedom routes on an A380 to the NYC area. One via Milan (MXP) and one via Athens (AXP). So far they haven't threatened the London NYC trade despite having multiple A380 flights to Britain. They may not want an all out trade war.

But Emirates are also flying an A380 to the island nation of Mauritius (3,144 miles) although most logic indicates that a tiny airport be served with a B777-300ER which doesn't have so much ultra expensive business and first class seating. MRU is by far the smallest airport Emirates services with an A380

Emirates Boeing 777-300ER has 8 first class 42 business class
Emirates Airbus A380-800 has 14 first class and 76 business class

==================================

Aruba (Population 103,400) is a semi-autonomous entity within the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The airport has a single 9000' runway and JFK is their busiest destination. Aruba's airport has pre clearance facilities.

Aruba has sovereignty on most internal matters but defers to the Kingdom in matters of defense, foreign policy, final judicial review, human rights, and good governance. Aruba is not considered a regional financial center. Because of its location, Aruba is a transshipment point for drugs from South America bound for the United States and Europe, and a transshipment point for currency flowing in the opposite direction. Bulk cash smuggling represents a risk due to the location of Aruba between North and South America. Money laundering is primarily related to proceeds from illegal narcotics by domestic and foreign criminal organizations, and occurs through real estate purchases and international tax shelters. There is no significant black market for smuggled goods on Aruba. They hav

Could exclusive Aruba with 250K passengers to JFK a year (2000 miles), be a good candidate for supersonic flight? San Juan PR with 600K passengers to JFK per year is a much busiest airport, but presumably with many more budget travelers.

Top domestic routes from JFK
Rank Airport Passengers Top Carriers
1 Los Angeles, California 1,644,310 American, Delta, JetBlue, Virgin America
2 San Francisco, California 1,047,600 American, Delta, JetBlue, Virgin America
3 Orlando, Florida 749,440 American, Delta, JetBlue
4 Las Vegas, Nevada 586,200 American, Delta, JetBlue, Virgin America
5 San Juan, Puerto Rico 582,020 American, Delta, JetBlue
6 Fort Lauderdale, Florida 571,560 Delta, JetBlue, Virgin America
7 Miami, Florida 562,100 American, Delta
8 Boston, Massachusetts 542,550 American, Delta, JetBlue
9 Seattle/Tacoma, Washington 403,820 Alaska, American, Delta, JetBlue
10 Phoenix–Sky Harbor, Arizona 362,400 American, Delta, JetBlue

==================================

Another possibility is JFK to Dakar for refueling and on to South Africa. While this route is not heavily traveled, it is very long, and Africa may not be very resistant to supersonic flights over land.
April 3rd, 2017 at 7:18:44 AM permalink
Nareed
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
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BTW, Boeing flew the 787-10 for the first time the same day Airbus flew the A319neo for the first time.

The same week, Embraer had the first flight of the E195 E2.

So, back to SSTs (which had their last flight years ago), let's move forward by looking back. When Concorde was in its rather long development towards service in the late 60s, and even into the early 70s, the assumption was in the future all aircraft would be supersonic.

I wonder how realistic this notion was. I mean, aside from the oil shocks and all, flying is already the most fuel intensive means of regular commercial transportation there is (well, rockets are more so, but that's a specialty niche right now). SSTs use up more fuel still. It's a simple matter of elementary thermodynamics: more speed for a like mass requires more energy. More energy means more fuel. And this is regardless of fuel-guzzling accessories such as after-burners (which Boom swears they won't have).

This means supersonic travel will always be more expensive than subsonic travel.

So unless fuel prices drop to unprecedented low levels (which, BTW, would mean a price too low to cover the cost of extracting the oil in the first place), or some ultra-cheap fuel source is developed, subsonic travel won't go away.

What place for mass supersonic travel, then?

To begin with, long haul routes. Any route above 7 hours that can be cut in half would be a hit, even at a premium. Though ultra-long haul routes would still be quite long. A 14-hour subsonic route reduced to 7 hours is great. But it's still 7 hours crammed inside a seat 18" wide (at best!) and with 32" pitch (at best!)

Mid haul routes might or might not benefit. I predict transcontinental routes within the US would be popular for SSTs, but Dallas to NYC not so much. Consider that the shorter the flight, the higher the percentage of it that's spent climbing and accelerating. For a really short flight, say Mex City to Monterrey, which takes about an hour right now, an SST might cut only 15 minutes. Your descent would begin very shortly after getting to cruising altitude. Would you pay a premium for that?

It gets tricky when the subsonic takes, say 3:30 hours and supersonic might take a bit under two hours. Would you pay double for that?
If Trump where half as smart as he thinks he is, he'd be twice as smart as he really is.
April 3rd, 2017 at 8:05:58 AM permalink
Fleastiff
Member since: Oct 27, 2012
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Quote: Nareed
It gets tricky when the subsonic takes, say 3:30 hours and supersonic might take a bit under two hours. Would you pay double for that?
No, I wouldl not, but a CEO/Fund Manager/etc. would and in a premium market its not always the salesman sitting in the seat who chooses what flight he is on.

The question is would people put up with over land sonic booms if they had only such slim gains in transit time? Probably.

Gains will be made in Electric/ Hybrid Electric / Subsonic flight. Supersonic flight will be researched and prototyped.... but its further away until the market gets better. Concorde was a public relations and prestige investment, not an operating entity consideration.