December 2015 Archives

Year in review

As we head into the Boeing holiday break, I want to thank all of you for following the blog this year. 2015 proved to be a very interesting and busy year for us. Here’s a look back at some of my favorite moments in photos. My best to you and yours for a safe and happy New Year.

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December: Rollout of the first 737 MAX.

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December: The 100th 787 built at Boeing South Carolina rolls out of the factory.

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November: The 100th delivery of the 747-8, thanks to a double delivery to AirBridgeCargo.

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October: The newly expanded Seattle Delivery Center marks its grand opening.

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October: The first 737 with our new Space Bins is delivered to launch customer Alaska Airlines.

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September: First flight of the KC-46A tanker.

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September: ANA rolls out their R2-D2™ ANA Jet in Everett.

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September: A triple 777 delivery to Emirates.

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August: The first autoclave for 777X wings heads to our new Composite Wing Center in Everett.

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July: The latest 747-8 Freighter to be painted in Seattle Seahawks livery rolls out of the paint hangar in Everett.

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June: The 787-9 in the flying display at the Paris Air Show— and rehearsing for the air show in the video below.

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May: Flyaway of the 100th 767 Freighter. FedEx later placed the largest single order in the history of the 767 program with an order for 50 more freighters.

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April: Employees of American Airlines celebrate their 787 fleet.

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March: The ecoDemonstrator 757 during its initial test flight.

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March: Cargolux decked out their newest 747-8 Freighter with a special decal honoring Joe Sutter, the Father of the 747.

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February: The 100th 777 Freighter was delivered to China Southern.

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January: Manaus Airport in Brazil became the 100th airport Cargolux operates to with the 747-8 Freighter.

Starry, starry night

Our Product Development engineers are working on cabin concepts that should deliver an eye-popping experience in the future. Along with strategic accent lighting, they’re developing projections of light and imagery for ceilings, walls and bulkheads.

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For example, airlines could use lighting enhancements on the walls and bulkheads to display information about the trip destination— or to project scenes that get passengers thinking about where they’re going.

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Future airplanes might have starry nights projected on the ceiling to help passengers sleep during red-eye flights. Passengers could see sunny and blue skies during the day to extend the look of daylight inside. All the technology could be tailored to each airline and be an extension of its brand inside the cabin.

These are just some of the ways we’re constantly looking at tomorrow’s technology today. You can see more of our future cabin concept in this video.

Hitting 100

The team at Boeing South Carolina has reached a major milestone. This week, they rolled out the 100th 787 built at the site.

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The airplane will now undergo system checks, fueling and engine runs on the flight line.

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The 787-8 will be delivered to American Airlines next year.

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Congrats to the entire team in North Charleston.

Crystal ball

As we approach the end of the year, I wanted to take the opportunity to look back at how the aviation market has performed in 2015—as well as look ahead to what we expect in the New Year.

In the second installment of my Audio Journal podcast, I sat down with one of our in-house prognosticators to look into the crystal ball. Click below to listen.

If you have an idea for a Randy’s Journal podcast topic—or if you have a question— send it to askrandy@boeing.com.

Right on time

If there was one common theme during today’s debut of the first 737 MAX, it was “right on time.” Just about everything on this program has been on schedule.

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The first 737 MAX rolls out of the paint hangar in Renton.

In fact, the first airplane rolled out of our Renton factory and into the paint hangar on November 30, the exact date we set on our schedule more than four years ago.

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Thousands of employees were on hand for today’s unveiling at our Renton factory. The airplane, a 737 MAX 8 fittingly dubbed the Spirit of Renton, is our first flight test airplane. It will now undergo pre-flight preps in the factory before we move it over to Renton Field to continue flight test readiness.

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Employees get their first look at the newly painted first MAX.

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The interior of the first 737 MAX is set up to begin flight test.

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The new Advanced Technology (AT) winglet.

The airplane is on track for first flight early next year, and the program remains on schedule for first delivery to Southwest Airlines in third quarter of 2017.

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Here’s a picture of the first MAX when it was still moving down the production line.

Commercial CEO Ray Conner may have said it best when he told employees: “You’ve poured your heart and soul into this airplane. These are the moments we cherish.”

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Indeed, a special day in Renton that we’ll all remember. For more photos and video from today’s MAX debut, check out our special webpage.

Home stretch

As we head down the home stretch of 2015, the Boeing teams in our factories and delivery centers continue to do impressive things.

In November, we delivered 71 airplanes—including 14 787s.

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The 787 factory in Everett.

Through the end of November, we’ve delivered a total of 709 airplanes. That’s 62 more than we delivered during the same time period last year. In fact, we’ve almost delivered more airplanes through November of this year than all of 2014.

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The newly expanded Seattle Delivery Center.

December is always a busy time. And I can think of no better present for the holidays than getting new airplanes into the hands of our customers.

Baby it's cold outside

Over the years at Boeing, our team has created airplanes designed to operate in all types of weather conditions. But it’s still impressive to see a 757 in Antarctica.

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That 757 touched down on the world’s southernmost continent for the first time last week.

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The flight was operated by our friends at the Icelandic carrier Loftleidir, part of the Icelandair Group’s charter service. It was part of a joint initiative with Antarctic Logistics and Expeditions (ALE) and NAS Corporation Limited, aimed at looking into the feasibility of using conventional commercial airplanes to bring expeditions and tours to ALE’s Union Glacier Camp, based in the remote and spectacular southern Ellsworth Mountains in West Antarctica.

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Looking at these photos, it seems the carrier’s 757-200ER had no problem landing on the blue ice runway at Union Glacier and looks just stunning against the backdrop of an Antarctic summer. Congrats and thanks to Tim Hewette and Adam Ungar from ALE for the great photos.

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