A Boeing employee inspects a composite wing spar at the Building 40-02 spar shop
In a big milestone for the program, Boeing officially started production on its new 777x line on Oct. 23. The 777X will feature new GE9X engines, an all-new composite wing with folding tips, longer range, while leveraging technologies from the 787 Dreamliner.
The one-piece composite spars measure more than 100 feet long, and each aircraft requires a total of four spars – two per wing
777X chief project engineer and vice president Terry Beezhold said it’s taken Boeing seven years to get to this point in the project. The current project schedule calls for the first test flight to happen in the first quarter of 2019, and the firstÂ delivery about a year after that.
Two U.S. pilots stepping off the first 787-9 at Boeing Field – Photo: Bernie Leighton | AirlineReporter
With the Emirates Milan saga, where US & Italian airlines are backing a play to force the Gulf carrier off the Fifth FreedomÂ New York route, it led me to look into similar instances that have happened over the last few months that perhaps lead to a deeper situation.
It seems that US-based airlines and the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA) are trying their hand at stopping outsider airlines from getting to the United StatesÂ rather than just expanding themselves.
Let’s take a closer look.
A Singapore Airlines Airbus A380 and Lufthansa Boeing 747-400 – Photo: David Parker Brown
2013 is now well in our rear view mirrors as we speed along the runway of another year and it is time to look back. Â We have covered what we did during 2013 on AirlineReporter but what about looking at what our two favorite aircraft manufacturers did? Â 2013 were big years for both Boeing & Airbus on many levels, so let’s take a look at more detail of exactly what happened in the order & delivery world:
In 2013, the big air shows in Paris & Dubai flooded the order books of both manufacturers. Â Airbus and Boeing both had record-breaking years with 1,619 & 1,531 gross orders, respectively. Â The winner in this situation is obviously Airbus by a good margin; the types of orders look consistent too:
Composite image of a Lufthansa Boeing 777-9X – Image: Lufthansa
Today, Lufthansa Airlines announced a major long-haul order split between the Airbus A350-900 and the Boeing 777-9X. The airline stated it would be adding at least 24 777-9X and 25 of the Airbus A350-900 to their fleet starting as early as 2016. The order is worth about $19 billion USD at list prices, although it is very likely that the airline received a substantial discount from both manufacturers.
Of course, the most interesting part of this order is the fact that Boeing has not officially launched the 777-9X.