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Blame the Supply Chain for Boeing Dreamliner Problems?

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rohscompliant
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Production Synthesizer
less weight better fuel economy.
rohscompliant   2/12/2013 3:05:40 PM
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I would say you are spot on. It is not the supply chain .....it is a supplier or two or three. It is just in our face because BOEING is a big company which created a cutting edge passanger plane. They used more battery backed systems to replace a lot of the electro mechanical systems used in the hydraulics........less weight more fuel savings, longer in flight mileage. Pushing new technology always has draw backs. Thankfullly all the planes were grounded and there was no tragic loss of life. My bet is that BOEING will find the fix and the 787 will go on to be a great plane.

Cryptoman
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Slip through the net
Cryptoman   2/12/2013 6:27:28 PM
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A company like Boeing cannot exist without a water tight supply chain. By definition, Boeing's work is all about contingency, risk management and fault avoidance, which I am sure applies to their supply chain too. Therefore, one supplier's poor work cannot be attributed to all the supply chain members and to a very successful company like Boeing. In cases like this, the best any company can do is to analyse where and why things went wrong, make the required changes to move forward stronger and with improved wisdom.

Michael Kirschner
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Re: Slip through the net
Michael Kirschner   2/12/2013 7:12:35 PM
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Agree with Cryptoman. ... and Rich :) ...

elctrnx_lyf
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Supply Network Guru
Re: Slip through the net
elctrnx_lyf   2/13/2013 5:15:47 AM
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If it is a supplier then it is a supply chian problem. Supply chain shall have strong engineering knowledge to make sure all the outsourced development or supply chain will not become a prey for lower quality parts end up into the product. Glad there is no tragedy happened till now and Boeing should rethink and improve the quality check. Otherwise any small mistake will cost big money.

Clairvoyant
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Supply Network Guru
Re: less weight better fuel economy.
Clairvoyant   2/13/2013 2:09:37 PM
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I agree with Rohscompliant. All new designs will go through some amount of 'growing pains'. It is very difficult to account for any problem that may occur, no matter how well engineered a product is. We can all blame Murphy's Law.

Brian Fuller
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Re: Only?
Brian Fuller   2/13/2013 3:51:11 PM
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Almost fell out of my chair on that line, Rich. Point taken. I occasionally want to pull my hair out. Other times I just curse between gritted teeth... still other times there are no gritted teeth!

 

Brian Fuller
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Re: Slip through the net
Brian Fuller   2/13/2013 3:59:44 PM
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Absolutely, although I think we all have the urge to micromanage our suppliers (in whatever form they work with us), it's humanly impossible. 

That said, as you point out, the systems are in place to cull the herd, if you will. However for Boeing, this could be a moment that damages their business in the medium term. 

The strategic vision was a cost-efficient, fuel-efficient aircraft that was relevant to as many routes as possible. Then, leverage the supply chain like it's never been leveraged before. Makes perfect sense. 

Here's hoping it very isolated problem with the battery cells themselves. The latest, from our colleague Chuck Murray at DesignNews, is that the NTSB is citing a short in one the cells. They still don't have a sense for what caused the short. (http://www.designnews.com/document.asp?doc_id=258717&itc=dn_analysis_element&)

We shall see... 

 

t.alex
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Supply Network Guru
Re: less weight better fuel economy.
t.alex   2/14/2013 10:45:25 PM
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Somehow this problem were not discovered during testing phases. It is not just supply chain issue. They skip steps maybe. 

_hm
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Supply Network Guru
Listen to senior engineer
_hm   2/15/2013 4:46:36 AM
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Yes, I agree with Boeing Sr Engineer. Outsourcing of highly engineered product is very demanding task. Involvement of not so technical supply chain and management people, with their attitude to simplfy all problems and its solution introduces many risks to program. There are many lessons to learn. I wish Boeing enginner can soon find root couse and rectify it.

Bolaji Ojo
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Blogger
The wins and the losses
Bolaji Ojo   2/15/2013 9:02:18 AM
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There are enough blames to share here and the development only points to the complexity of the design chain and the supply chain. While we focus on what failed we forget the thousands of parts and systems that continue to function as expected.

In such a highly engineered plane, a lot of things worked as expected. Nonetheless, so much is at stake that the failure of a single part or system can have catastrophic consequences.

What this points to is the fact that the design team and the procurement team must work ever more tightly together.

 

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