Drucella Andersen Headquarters, Washington, D.C. July 15, 1994 (Phone: 202/358-4733) H.

Keith Henry Langley Research Center, Hampton, Va. (Phone: 804/864-6124) RELEASE: 94-118 BOEING AND DOUGLAS TEAM UP IN HIGH-SPEED AERO CONTRACT NASA today announced the award of a $440 million contract that marks the first time America's two leading airplane manufacturers have teamed up to develop technologies for a potential future U.S. High-Speed Civil Transport (HSCT). This precedent-setting action joins Boeing Commercial Airplane Group, Seattle, Wash., with McDonnell Douglas Aerospace, Long Beach, Calif., and other companies to develop airframe technologies for aerodynamics, flight systems and materials and structures. "Developing the technologies for a future supersonic airliner that will be environmentally friendly and economically successful presents a major challenge and opportunity," said Louis J. Williams, Director of NASA's High-Speed Research (HSR) program. "This contract effectively combines the expertise and capabilities of U.S. industry to accomplish this goal," Williams said. Boeing has proposed that McDonnell Douglas serve as the company's principle subcontractor. By working together under a single contract, the two companies will be able to reduce redundancies, lower costs and accelerate research, ensuring that the United States remains at the forefront in commercial aerospace competition. Boeing and McDonnell Douglas, along with General Electric Corp. and Pratt & Whitney, previously had competed with NASA via separate contracts in the first phase of the NASA HSR program. Phase I was aimed at developing technologies to address important environmental issues such as the reduction of noise and engine emissions.

Progress made in Phase I has led to Phase II of the program, which focuses on moving technology concepts out of the laboratory and into practical applications. Phase II will focus on developing and providing the technology necessary to make a future supersonic airliner economically practical as well as environmentally compatible. In June, NASA awarded Honeywell Inc. $75 million to conduct flight deck systems research and technology development for the potential HSCT, and last year the agency selected GE and Pratt & Whitney to negotiate a contract for propulsion technologies. The HSCT, a commercial supersonic aircraft, could fly 300 passengers across the Pacific or Atlantic Oceans at 2.4 times the speed of sound -- cutting travel time by more than half. The new aircraft will fly faster than the Concorde, go nearly twice as far and be able to carry three times as many passengers. The second phase also will include performance evaluations of representative engine components, structural verification tests of new engine and airframe materials and flight tests of better wing designs and new cockpit technology. The flight deck systems effort will develop controls, guidance and synthetic vision technology, such as might be used to allow the pilot to fly the aircraft in all weather conditions with a "no-nose-droop" design, a significant improvement over the first generation Concorde. The main objective of the aerodynamics effort is to develop technology to increase the supersonic and subsonic cruise performance of the potential transport. Researchers will use wind tunnels and computational techniques to look at several different designs for the transport's components, primarily the wing and the horizontal tail. Researchers in materials and structures will develop new metallic alloys and composite materials for the airframe that can withstand temperatures of up to 350 degrees Fahrenheit at cruise speeds. Also, researchers will develop technology to produce wing and fuselage structures that are 33 percent lighter in weight than comparable Concorde structures, while also economical to manufacture and highly durable.

NASA's HSR program, begun in 1990, is the cornerstone of NASA aeronautics research for the 1990s. Funding for the agency's program, which addresses only high-risk, high-priority technology, totalled $197 million this fiscal year, with comparable investments planned through the end of the century. American industry is making parallel investments to complete the high-risk technology, and they will decide whether building a next-generation supersonic transport makes good business sense. NASA's Office of Aeronautics, Washington, D.C., directs the High-Speed Research program. NASA's Langley Research Center, Hampton, Va., is the agency's lead center for overall technical project implementation, with the Lewis Research Center, Cleveland, leading the propulsion technology development. The Dryden Flight Research Center, Edwards, Calif., is working on laminar flow control, flight testing and sonic boom research for the HSR program, while the Ames Research Center, Mountain View, Calif., is working on flight deck technology, sonic boom and aerodynamics research. -endEDITORS NOTE: A videotape describing NASA's High-Speed Research program is available to media representatives by faxing a request to 202/358-4333. The video length is 1 minute and 11 seconds. Still photos of the Boeing and McDonnell Douglas concepts of the High-Speed Civil Transport are available by faxing a request to the same number. Color: B&W:

McDonnell Douglas: 94-HC-184 94-H-198 Boeing: 94-HC-185 94-H-199

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