The final Boeing 747 leaves its facility

Aviation News

History of the 747

Production began for this iconic aircraft in 1967 and over 54 years 1,574 have been built. Boeing said the plane was the result of about 50,000 mechanics, construction workers, engineers, administrators and secretaries. Known as “the Incredibles”, the team made history with the largest civilian airplane in the world. The first workers arrived at the 747 production plant on Jan. 3, 1967, and the 747-100 rolled out on Sep. 30, 1968. Over roughly 16 months in the late 1960s, the plane was built and entered the global travel service in 1970. The FAA certified the 747-100 for commercial service on Dec. 30, 1969, and it entered commercial service with Pan American World Airways on a New York-to-London flight on Jan. 21, 1970. According to Boeing, the need for this plane stemmed from a reduction in airfares and an influx of air passenger traffic. With crowded skies, Boeing planned to create a commercial airplane to use military technology from the large military transport planes like the C-5A. Boeing said other than the engines, the 747 was a completely new plane from the C-5A. By September of 1972, the 747 worldwide fleet had achieved one million flight hours. in October of 1975, it carried its 100 millionth passenger. Using a specially equipped model, Boeing said a 747 carried a U.S. space shuttle for the first time on Feb. 18, 1977.

At 250 ft 2 in., this is the longest commercial aircraft in service. The 747-8 can travel roughly the length of three FIFA soccer fields or NFL football fields per second, Boeing said. The plane was built in a 200 million cubic-foot facility in Everett, Washington. Boeing said the fuselage of the original 747 was 225 feet long and the tail was as tall as a six-story building. The total wing area was larger than a basketball court and the cargo hold could fit 3,400 pieces of luggage and be unloaded in seven minutes.

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