April 2016 Archives

Fastest to 400

Earlier this week, we delivered our 400th 787. The delivery to Scoot came at Boeing South Carolina—and will go down in our history books.


The 400th 787 to be delivered went to Scoot. The airplane is pictured at our Boeing South Carolina delivery center. Photos by Alan Marts.

It marks the fastest accomplishment of that many deliveries for any twin-aisle commercial airplane—and the fastest for any of our airplanes since the 727.

The delivery came four years and seven months after the first 787 was handed over in September 2011. The 727 program reached the 400 milestone in April 1967, three years and six months after its first delivery.


Congratulations to our teams in Everett and North Charleston on this impressive milestone. To track all of the 787s in the air at any given moment, check out our 787 flight tracker.

First quarter reflections

In keeping with tradition, I wanted to look back at some of our first quarter highlights now that we’ve reported our earnings.

The year kicked off with the first flight of the 737 MAX, and we’ve had the chance to celebrate a lot of other milestones and events with our airline customers. Here’s a look back.

  • 737 MAX completes a successful first flight, beginning a comprehensive flight-test program.

A spectacular view from Lake Washington as the first MAX takes off for its first flight. Matthew Thompson photo.


Air to air photo of the third MAX test airplane. John D. Parker photo.

  • Boeing delivers the 8,888th 737 to come off the line to Xiamen Airlines. Eight is considered a fortunate number in Chinese culture, and the airplane has a special livery to commemorate the airplane’s significance.

The 8,888th 737 is delivered. Paul Gordon photo.

  • 747-8 surpasses 1 million flight hours since the October 2011 entry into service.

One of Lufthansa’s 747-8s.

  • Continuing the Boeing tradition of building presidential aircraft, the 747 is awarded a U.S. Air Force contract for risk-reduction activities for the Presidential Aircraft Recapitalization program.
  • FedEx exercises its option to purchase one 767 Freighter.
  • CAS launches the 737-800 Boeing Converted Freighter program with 30 orders and 25 commitments from seven customers.

The 737-800 BCF.

  • Air China orders six 777-300ERs.
  • SWISS receives its first 777-300ER, which becomes the flagship of its long-haul fleet.
  • Qatar Airways takes its 50th 777.

The 50th 777 for Qatar. Tim Stake photo.

  • The third and final round of 777X low-speed wind-tunnel testing begins at QinetiQ in Farnborough, UK.
  • Turkish Airlines teams with Warner Bros. to create a splashy 777 livery that spotlights the movie, “Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice.”

A superhero themed 777.

  • Major assembly of the first 787-10 begins.
  • 787 program moves to 12 per month rate in final assembly.
  • Boeing South Carolina delivers the 100th 787 built at the North Charleston site, a 787-8 for American Airlines.

Celebrating the delivery of the 100th 787 built by Boeing South Carolina. Alan Marts photo.

Final flight

Our friends at Boeing Test & Evaluation shared some photos of a special moment today. Boeing test pilots Mike Carriker and Chad Lundy had the good fortune to fly a 247D from Paine Field in Everett to Boeing Field in Seattle— on what would be the airplane’s final flight.


The airplane prepares to leave Paine Field for its ferry flight. Jon Lee photo.


Boeing Test & Evaluation test pilots Chad Lundy (left) and Mike Carriker give you a look inside the Model 247.

The Boeing Model 247 was developed in 1933. The all-metal, twin-engine airplane was the first modern passenger airliner.


The airplane on approach to Boeing Field. Francis Zera/Museum of Flight photo.

This particular airplane has belonged to The Museum of Flight since 1966, and is one of only four remaining in the world. It will now be placed on permanent display at the museum. Congrats to all involved in this memorable day.

Nonstop on the 787

On June 1, I plan to be on board for what will be the longest 787 flight when United launches service between San Francisco and Singapore. Using one of its 787-9s, United will be the first airline to offer nonstop service between SFO and SIN. This will also be the only nonstop service to the U.S. from Singapore.


One of United’s 787-9s.

It’s just the latest example of how the Dreamliner is opening up new routes all over the world. Just a few short months ago, 75 new nonstop routes had been opened with the 787. Today, that total has jumped to more than 100 routes that have been announced or are already in operation.

The graphic below shows all the routes between markets that were never connected before via a nonstop flight.


The efficiencies and capabilities of the 787 have made them possible. Here are just a few of the new additions to the list since the beginning of this year:

Hainan: Changsha, China to Los Angeles

LOT: Warsaw to Tokyo Narita

TUI: Birmingham, UK to Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

United: San Francisco to Tel Aviv

Norwegian: Oslo to Boston

I’m looking forward to the longest 787 flight in June—and will be sure to share my experiences here on the blog.

9,000 and counting

The world’s best-selling airplane just reached another impressive milestone. Today, we delivered the 9,000th 737.


The 9000th 737 is delivered to China United.

The airplane, a 737-800, is going to China United and we were excited to celebrate with them at Boeing Field.


From the Classics, to the Next-Generation, to the MAX— the 737 just keeps getting better. With one 737 taking off or landing every 1.7 seconds, the airplane is the industry’s workhorse. On average, over 2,400 737s are in the air at any given time.

Here’s a look back at other 737 delivery milestones. Thanks to all of our 737 customers through the years— and into the future.


8000th delivery: April 2014, United, 737-900ER.


7000th delivery: December 2011, flydubai, 737-800.


6000th delivery: April 2009, ILFC (for Norwegian Air Shuttle), 737-800.


5000th delivery: February 2006, Southwest, 737-700.


4000th delivery: June 2001, Air Algerie, 737-800. (we have no photo of the actual airplane. This photo shows a 737 delivered to Air Algerie in July of 2001)


3000th delivery: February 1998, Alaska, 737-400.


2000th delivery: February 1991, Lufthansa, 737-500.


1000th delivery: December 1983, Delta, 737-200.

Going international

The 737 MAX continues to be right on track—and will soon be going international for flight testing. Our third MAX airplane took its first flight today.


The third MAX test airplane takes off on its first flight from Renton Field on April 14. Monica Wehri photo.


Air to air photo of MAX #3. John D. Parker photo.


Another air to air with the third MAX. John D. Parker photo.

Meanwhile, airplanes #1 and #2 have now completed over 50 flights combined. We’ve wrapped up everything from low speed stability and control tests, to flutter testing—which the head of the MAX program describes as “whisper smooth.”


The first MAX test airplane is seen here. Paul Weatherman photo.


Here’s an air to air photo of MAX #2 in the skies of California. John D. Parker photo.

Looking ahead, airplane #2 will soon head down to La Paz, Bolivia for high altitude testing. That will mark the first international trip for the MAX test fleet.

And airplane #4 will soon emerge from our factory configured in a full passenger interior, before heading across the globe to complete other testing.

We look forward to continue putting the MAX through its paces here at home— and all over the world.

AvGeek Fest 2016

I wanted to share a few photos from this past weekend’s Aviation Geek Fest. The event, which attracts Boeing fans from all over world, seems to be getting bigger and better every year.


I got to speak to AvGeek Fest attendees during dinner at the Future of Flight in Everett.

I had the pleasure of speaking to the group during their dinner at the Future of Flight in Everett, sharing the very latest on our airplane development programs.


Just some of the groups who got up close and personal with the new 737 MAX.

The group also toured our Everett and Renton factories— even getting the chance to see the first 737 MAX test airplane. The Museum of Flight was also one of their tour stops.


Touring the 787 line in Everett.

This year’s attendees came from all over the U.S., as well as Canada, the UK, Austria, Australia, Philippines, the UAE and India. Thanks for visiting— and most of all, thanks for your support of Boeing.

Rare look

It’s rare that our customers allow access inside one of their BBJs. But at this week’s ABACE show in Shanghai, we’re showing off a BBJ and giving you a look inside this 737.


This is the first turnkey BBJ to Greater China—which means that Boeing Business Jets managed the entire completion process and handed the airplane over to the customer.

As usual, we aren’t revealing the customer. But enjoy the photos.





Start your engine

The engine that will eventually power our new 777X has now started ground testing. The GE9X is being tested at GE Aviation’s Peebles Testing Operation in Ohio.

This marks a significant milestone in the development of the engine and the program.


Designed specifically for the 777X, the new GE9X engine has started ground testing.

Maturation testing of the GE9X began five years ago and has progressed from component-level all the way to the first full engine to test—also known as FETT.

FETT brings all the GE9X technologies together to demonstrate what they can do as a complete propulsion system. This also gives us early information on the engine’s aerodynamic and thermal characteristics. Check out the videos below.

GE Aviation says the results of the initial engine run were very positive. We look forward to working together with GE to deliver the 777X to our customers.


Orders & deliveries

After wrapping up the first quarter of the year, I wanted to take a look at where things stand on the orders and deliveries front.

As of April 5, we’ve booked 122 net orders for the year. In just the past week, we booked 17 new orders — including four 747-8 Freighters, one 777 Freighter, two 737 MAXs and 10 Next-Generation 737s.

On the deliveries side, our teams in Renton, Everett and North Charleston handed over 176 airplanes to our customers in the first quarter. As always, those totals will vary throughout the year—primarily driven by when our customers take delivery.

We delivered 121 737s and 30 787s. Both of those totals are identical to the figures from last year’s first quarter.

The 767 total reflects that while tankers are being built on that production line, they haven’t been delivered yet. And customer timing on freighter deliveries impacted the 747 program’s total.

Production rate increases for the 767 program happen this month— and are just around the corner for the 787 program. Congratulations to all of our teams for getting those airplanes into the hands of our customers as quickly as possible.


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