Around the World

Miles flown for stories
2014: 360,327
2013: 330,818

Canada’s Homegrown Astronaut: Chris Hadfield

Col. Chris Hadfield describes life onboard the International Space Station to a packed house at the Future of Flight. Photo: Kris Hull

Col. Chris Hadfield describes life onboard the International Space Station to a packed house at the Future of Flight – Photo: Kris Hull

Colonel Chris Hadfield (RCAF ret.) is probably one of the most easily recognizable astronauts today. His popularity was spurred to rock star-like status in 2012 while he was training for his final spaceflight, a five-month stay on the International Space Station. Recently, Col. Hadfield made a stop in Everett, WA, to promote his newest book, You are Here – Around the World in 92 Minutes, and AirlineReporter had a few minutes to sit down and talk with this amazing man about his missions, his infamous tweets, and his books.

Chris Hadfield, Canada's most famous astronaut! portrait. Photo: NASA

Chris Hadfield, Canada’s most famous astronaut! Photo: NASA

In the last fifteen to twenty years, no astronaut has risen to the popularity that Chris Hadfield has. As one of the few Canadian astronauts, he has had the honor of flying into space three times: twice on the Space Shuttle, and once on a Soyuz. On his last mission, he assumed command of the International Space Station, only the second non-American or Russian to hold that honor. He was the only Canadian to visit the Russian space station Mir  and was the first Canadian to walk in space.

When asked about his two space walks, and what it was like to exit that hatch for the first time, he said “It’s very visually powerful. It is overwhelmingly visually powerful outside. You have the Earth going by underneath you at five miles a second, and all of the colors that exist, the textures, are just amazing. When you look the other way, it is the complete blackness of the universe going on forever. And you are in the middle of all of this, hanging onto a silver and white man-made structure, holding on with one hand. The onslaught coming in through your eyes is amazing. Your eyes is the only sense that tells you were you are. It is an overwhelming experience. When I go back and watch the video of the first time I exited the hatch, I can see that I just stopped for several seconds and just took it all in. We over use the words awesome and incredible, but walking in space is both of these things.”

Continue reading Canada’s Homegrown Astronaut: Chris Hadfield

Museum of Flight Receives a Boeing 787 Dreamliner

Boeing 787 Number 3 (aka ZA003) at the Museum of Flight - Photo: Mal Muir | AirlineReporter.com

Boeing 787 Dreamliner number 3 (aka ZA003) at the Museum of Flight

Saturday, November 8th at the Museum of flight will forever be known as Dreamliner Day.  This Seattle aviation museum is known for many examples of aircraft built in the Seattle area, such as the first 747, the prototype 737, and the only remaining Boeing 80A.  But now the Museum has it’s own Boeing 787 Dreamliner, the first museum in the world to have such an aircraft.

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Giving Thanks to the Veterans

vets

All of us at AirlineReporter would like to thank the Veterans who have served our country and those who are still serving. We know there are quite a few of you that read our site and we are always grateful. To celebrate this day, we wanted to share some of our veteran/military-related stories:

PHOTOS: The Many Liveries on the Boeing 787 Dreamliner

Aerial photo of Etihad Airways' first 787-9 at Paine Field - Photo: Bernie Leighton

Aerial photo of Etihad Airways’ first 787-9 at Paine Field – Photo: Bernie Leighton

Here we have the fourth installment of showing off the beautiful Boeing 787 Dreamliner liveries that have been seen at Paine Field and around the world. There have now been 42 different liveries. Last update was from July 2013 and we have seen quite a few new ones since then.

Let me know in the comments: Which 787 livery is your favorite? Your least favorite?

Continue reading PHOTOS: The Many Liveries on the Boeing 787 Dreamliner

Aviation in Seattle: Renton Plane Spotting Guide

Renton Municipal Airport, home of the 737.

Renton Municipal Airport, home of the Boeing 737

In the past, we have featured plane spotting guides for Paine Field and also other airports like Anchorage or Tokyo Haneda. With numerous airports in the Seattle area, including SeaTac and Boeing Field, there is sometimes a forgotten, but quite important, airport for plane spotters which provides a continuous stream of aircraft to spot. I am speaking of Renton Municipal Airport, the home of Boeing’s narrow-body aircraft plant.

The Southern Threshold of Renton's runway.

The southern threshold of Renton’s runway

The Renton Airport traces its history back to World War II.  Originally built on reclaimed land from Lake Washington, the airport was built by the Department of Defense (DoD) to support Amphibious Aircraft being built by Boeing on Lake Washington.  The PBB Sea Ranger project was cancelled after the prototype was built, so Boeing ended up using the facility to produce the B-29 Superfortress.  By the end of the war, a total of 1,119 were built.

After the war, the City of Renton purchased the airport back from the DoD for $1 and the facility laid dormant for a few years.  In 1948, the KC-97 Stratofreighter project brought the airport back to life and thus began a long and productive history of aircraft to flow out of the Boeing factory doors.  The first Dash 80 aircraft, famous for the barrel roll over Lake Washington, rolled out in May 1954.  Renton was the home of every single 707 built.

The 727 & 757 were all built there as well.  However, Renton is famous these days for being the home of the 737, where production stands at a massive 42 aircraft per month. Continue reading Aviation in Seattle: Renton Plane Spotting Guide