Boeing improves 747 and 737

The second Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental, RC021, has successfully made its first flight. The airplane completes the two-airplane test fleet for the 747-8 Intercontinental.

RC021 will be used primarily for testing the various interior systems that will be on the Intercontinental, such as heating, venting and air conditioning, smoke detection and galleys. In addition, Boeing will conduct fuel consumption and function and reliability tests on the airplane. The 747-8 Intercontinental flight-test program will perform approximately 600 hours of flight testing.

Vastly superior to current models, the passenger version of the new 747-8 will have the lowest seat-mile cost of any large commercial jetliner, with 12 percent lower costs than its predecessor, the 747-400. The airplane provides 16 percent better fuel economy, 16 percent less carbon emissions per passenger and generates a 30 percent smaller noise footprint than the 747-400.

Meanwhile, Boeing has delivered the first 737-900ER with the new Boeing Sky Interior to Continental Airlines.

The 737-900ER can carry 13 more passengers and has approximately the same range as the 737-800 in United Continental’s seating configuration. The additional airplanes will grow the United Continental family’s fleet to 52 737-900ERs, the second largest 737-900ER fleet in the world.    

Today’s operators fly 737s that are 5 percent more fuel efficient than the first Next-Generation 737s delivered in 1998 and additional improvements are on the way.

Additionally, the carrier’s new 737-900ERs and all subsequent 737 aircraft taken by the United Continental family will feature the 737 Boeing Sky Interior. With this new interior design, the airline will welcome travellers into a cabin featuring modern, sculpted sidewalls and window reveals. The design of the new, larger stow bins allows them to accommodate more bags than before.

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