Even though Boeing's 787 Dreamliner has been grabbing the headlines recently, the aviation giant's alternative aircraft have been generating just as much interest. So much so that Boeing has officially increased production of its next-generation 737 plane due to ongoing global demand.
Boeing says it has increased production of the best-selling single-aisle airplane from 31.5 to 35 a month. It has also announced plans to increase the production rate to 38 aircraft a month in the second quarter of 2013 and to 42 planes a month in the first half of 2014.
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The increase in production began with employees loading chords and webs manufactured by the Boeing Fabrication division into the company's newest automated spar assembly tool. The individual parts were then joined to make a spar, which is the main support structure for the wings.
"The start of spar assembly today demonstrates the progress the 737 team has made," said Beverly Wyse, Vice President and General Manager of the 737 program. "This is part of the series of rate increases to meet customer demand for the most popular airplane in aviation history."
In order to accommodate the growth, Boeing has made production more efficient by working with employee process improvement teams and increased capacity with capital investments in installation systems.