Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Boeing’s Biggest Plane Ever Approaches First Flight

Boeing’s Biggest Plane Ever Approaches First Flight: "

Boeing’s new 747-8 Intercontinental completed engine runs on the ground Tuesday as the team prepares for its first flight. As the airplane maker approaches the last of first flights for the new 747 and 787 programs, it also received the first new order for the Intercontinental in more than a year.

Air China has purchased five of Boeing’s biggest ever airplane. The new order brings the total sales count for the new 747-8 to 112. But the purchase also highlights Boeing’s efforts to market the new aircraft to Asian markets.

It’s no coincidence that both the 787 and 747-8 include a number believed to bring good luck China and other Asian nations (and there’s also the new Airbus A380). At the unveiling of the new 747-8 Intercontinental last month, Boeing made it very clear that the new red, and orange paint scheme was a direct nod to what it hopes to be a strong market in Asia.

The Air China order is the first 747-8 order in either the passenger or cargo configuration. China is widely considered to be the biggest growth market for airliners in the coming decades. Both Hong Kong based Kathay Pacific and Korean Air have ordered cargo versions of the new jumbo, while Korean Air is the only other order for the passenger version from the Asian continent.

As the Intercontinental approaches its first flight with the recent two hour and 45 minute engine run, the cargo version of the 747-8 continues its busy flight test schedule. Recent testing includes stall testing where artificial ice is attached to the wings as well as tests of the auto land system.

The 747-8 Intercontinental is expected to make its first flight before the end of the month.

Photo: Boeing


No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...