New Version 700ER

Continued from front page. The new Boeing 737-700ER represents the most advanced, most detailed and most ambitious of Ariane's projects to date. Following the success with the work on the 900ER, our Boeing range continues to develop and expand the logic and systems on the flight deck to increase the speed of the flight deck so that FPS is guaranteed at MEGA airports from London Heathrow to John F Kennedy to Berlin. For more pictures click on gallery link here.

The new (and very much advanced) Boeing 737-700ER is all an advanced simulation of the world's extended range airliner should be. From its sleek lines of detail to its very enhanced flight deck, the new 700ER also boasts some new technology that deserves shouting about.
After working for so long on the current FMC logic structure and finding that there were probably too many areas to correct and to develop, it was decided to start again from scratch and produce a new and more dynamic version that in time, would be able to offer every single feature that the real FMC offers. With the new Boeing 737-700er, the FMC side of the equation is Phase One OPS (which means that it is not only V1.01 of OPS as a version FMC running OPS Level Software but that it is also very new and very advanced in the way it helps the FMCS structure process complex and integrated commands (one such command being the run of code that manages the new EGPWS Terrain Radar feature without robbing the display engine of FPS). IT is this sort of development that makes the new Boeing 737-700er very special indeed.

The aircraft is the most ambitious project that Ariane has undertaken to date but more than that, it has the most 'toys' too! (Over 1,900 features and functions, to be exact). And if that were not enough, all those pilots who like to pore over a printed manual while flying, will also be able to do exactly that with the added bonus of both full colour PDFs and printable, training and reference manuals, covering the very much needed explanations and new sections required on extended range flight and advanced fuel management.

The Boeing 737-700ER 'Command Setting Logic' [CSM] on its Throttle Quadrant Unit represents a unique approach to command thrust setting in a simulation. Designed with the help of key engineers who build 737 throttles, one hardware developer working on the development of their TQ said "Ariane aircraft are the "only aircraft that work with our TQ with 100% smooth transition." Add to this the use of 12 levels of unique lighting and it can be seen how the dynamic element of the new Boeing 737-700ER really shines through.

If anything can be said about the products new fidelity it is exactly what our test pilots have said about her. "She is quite possibly as close to the original I fly..." Given that there are only a few ER pilots (and engineers) in the specialist area of extended range flight, that quote provides something of an accolade for the new ER. Dressed in the two significant (and very beautifully designed) colors of the ANA Air Nippon flagship, the 700 ER will offer new challenges (along with a new area of flight).

Obviously, for an extended range aircraft to appeal to a wider audience, there had to be a crossing of a few borders. The choice was made to provide an aircraft with no less of a brand but never the less as branded a VIP. Privatair is the Swiss VIP aircraft of choice, taking businessmen around the world in VIP class. The 700ER range is complete with only three aircraft (as well as those in the base pack which comprise the launch BCA livery and the pre-painted, zinc coated version). (A Limited Offer sees these aircraft included with the base pack and BCA). Of course, the 700ER is also capable of accepting the liveries that are being prepared for the Boeing 737-700. From the very new (and one whose paint is hardly dry yet) COA/United to more illustrated versions (we won't mention authenticity when personal choice beckons).

The new release is not all about the exterior of aircraft, pretty and captivating though they may be. The Boeing 737-700 ER is very much about its systems and its capabilities. With a new EGPWS 'Terrain Engine' as standard in TERR Mapping (included with the release during the first few weeks) the new feature, along with its advanced HUD, will make low viz approaches in mountainous areas a challenge worth accepting. Japan offers a number of challenging approaches and the aircraft would be at home in its resplendent gold and blue liveries.

Before going back to the technicalities of the new 700ER on the flight deck department, it is worth noting the small details added to the 700ER (such as effects during dusk and dawn transitions) and where over 14 different levels of lighting have all been professionally taken care of from different points. Exit lights, landing, retractable landing, taxi, wing, nav, deck, OH, galley, Int Exit center ... Lighting is a feature that therefore plays as important a part as it does in the real aircraft.

With so many demands placed on a pilot, it is during descent and during approach where a pilot realizes the benefits of his training. EGPWS (along with the HUD in poor viz conditions) is one of the most effective tools the Boeing 737-700ER offers. Allowing over 100 calculations running all at the same time, EGPWS and the new FMS processing provides the pilot with effortless (and all the more controlled, when required) profile management. (And where others may offer point to point, nose down, descent options, they might hide embarrassment behind air brakes). Not here. The 700ER has set the blueprint for a smooth descent, almost as serene as watching its Coanda effect form over the upper wing as it pitches up in inclement weather (see below).

While we are on the subject, the Boeing 737-700 ER also features many noted effects that its sister aircraft has. Those of weather effects. From the beams of light in fog (where water particles extend wing nav lights as beams in front of the aircraft) to vapour trails, flowing off the edge of the wing to the often spectacular effect of 'Coanda' as pressure builds up over the top of the wing and is shown as a 'cloud' of vapor above it. Add to this the effect of spray (which is the nearest you will get to seeing heat vapor out of the back of the engines) and you can see why we were so excited to test the new version in inclement weather (to see the effect, set rain to max, brakes on, slowly increase throttle and from outside, look behind the aircraft).

Back on the flight deck, a series of advancements make the new Boeing 737- 700ER even more attractive. With standard engine settings, many simulations (including our earlier versions) did not provide for one of the most handy yet functional of EEC features. We'll move to one of our Boeing pilots to enlighten: "Yes, the EEC also provides a very handy feature. Since it is a digital thrust system the position of the thrust lever is an exact digital position. This is graphically translated to targets (N1 COMMAND SECTORS) on the N1 gauge. So if I stand on the runway ready to takeoff it is standard to first run up the engines to a min of 40% N1. So by looking at the N1 gauge I push up the thrust levers until I see the vector at ~41-42% then I just have to wait for the EEC to control the engines to exact that value. This is a very important feature that pilots rely on. And would be great if it was included in your version." Well today it is.

Providing for extended range flight is not the only thing that provided a more fulfilling brief for the new Boeing 737-700ER (as if it does not contain enough as it is). A new PROGRESS page, a new N1 performance table, new and detailed calculation algorithms, climb CLB logic, ECON variant math. Rocket science to you? Maybe. But for the same reason Boeing engineers spend time behind the scenes making the real thing the legend that the Boeing 737 is, it provides us with enough ambition; to getting it right.

Although the galley is not that different when compared with its sisters, it is none the less as functional (and as unique). With its ANA logos on the entrance doors and its new lighting settings (not to mention every attendant and announcement as standard on the audio panel. You can even play music during approach. Nothing short of complete, then (although you cannot actually ask it to make coffee. Yet).