Milestone: Boeing 777X Completes Successful First Flight
The new Boeing 777X jetliner took to the skies yesterday, entering the next phase of its rigorous test program before entering into commercial service. The 7779X took off in front of thousands at Paine Field in Everett, Washington, at 10:09 a.m. local time for a three hour, 51 minute flight over Washington state before landing at Seattle's Boeing Field. The flight was led by Captain Chaney and Boeing Chief Pilot Craig Bomben who worked through a detailed test plan to exercise the airplane's systems and structures while the test team in Seattle monitored the data in real time. The first of four dedicated 777-9 flight test airplanes, WH001 will now undergo checks before resuming testing in the coming days. Boeing expects to deliver the first 777X in 2021. The test fleet, which began ground testing in Everett last year, will endure a comprehensive series of tests and conditions on the ground and in the air over the coming months to demonstrate the safety and reliability of the design. Based on the popular 777 and with proven technologies from the 787 Dreamliner, the 777X will deliver 10% lower fuel use and emissions and 10 percent lower operating costs than the competition. The long haul aircraft features advanced aerodynamics, the latest generation carbon-fiber composite wing and the most advanced commercial engine ever built, GE Aviation's GE9X. The program has won 340 orders and commitments from leading carriers around the world, including ANA, British Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways, Emirates, Etihad Airways, Lufthansa, Qatar Airways and Singapore Airlines. The 777X includes the 777-8 and the 777-9. In typical 2-class configuration, the 777-8 can carry 384 passengers while the 777-9 can carry 426 passengers.