Designed for the Environment


it has approximately three million parts and before it ever takes off Boeing engineers already know how those parts will affect its flight along with its environment from raw materials and production methods to fuel efficiency and aircraft retirement Boeing is designing jet liners to improve every aspect of their use and environmental performance airplanes have very long in-service lifespans my job is to look for ways to continue improve the environmental performance of those products over their entire lifecycle when jet liners were first built there wasn’t much thought given to materials components or even whole aircraft once their service lives were over often 30 or more years after they were originally manufactured but that’s all changed Boeing is now building entire airplanes with recycling in mind take composite wing and fuselage structures for example the 787 is made of composite structure which it’s what makes it lighter weight and makes it significantly more fuel-efficient than the airplanes that they replace with composites we’ve been working very hard with the industry to understand how to preserve carbon fiber because once you can recycle the carbon fiber you can put it into many other applications and much lighter costs and much less energy than it would take for raw material use however designing for the environment goes well beyond high-tech materials such as carbon fiber it includes better recycling approaches for the most ordinary materials like aircraft carpeting we were surprised to find out how often carpet is turned over in an aircraft so over the twenty to thirty year lifespan of one single aircraft tons of carpet can go to landfill that’s why Boeing is helping Airlines replace small sections of worn carpets with recyclable carpet squares if there’s a stain or a spill you can remove one carpet tile and replace it with a fresh tile and it fits right in and it’s seamless we love it our customer loves it and it’s better for the environment so that’s a win-win-win for all what really makes designing for the important is the scale it represents Boeing produces more than 48 large commercial jetliners a month so an improvement in an airplanes design can be reflected in thousands of planes in just a few years there’s nothing simple about aircraft the real challenge is that to make an airplane more recycled or must a state more sustainable is that we need everyone was anything to do with the airplane to begin to think in a more sustainable way

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