Boeing took a major step closer this week toward completing the assembly of the first 747-8 Freighter as mechanics at the factory in Everett, Wash. loaded the forward and aft fuselage sections to join with the wing and center section.
"It is exciting to see this airplane taking shape," said Mo Yahyavi, vice president and general manager of the 747 Program. "The 747-8 is the largest commercial jet airplane we have assembled. This final body join provides us the first real look at the size of the 747-8 Freighter."
The 747-8 Freighter is 250 feet, 2 inches (76.3 m) long, which is 18 feet and 4 inches (5.6 m) longer than the 747-400 Freighter. The stretch provides customers with 16 percent more revenue cargo volume compared to its predecessor. That translates to four additional main-deck pallets and three additional lower-hold pallets.
The 747-8 Freighter is the new high-capacity 747 that will give cargo operators the lowest operating costs and best economics of any freighter airplane while providing enhanced environmental performance. Boeing has secured 78 orders from leading cargo operators for the new 747-8 Freighter. Cargolux, Nippon Cargo Airlines, AirBridgeCargo Airlines, Atlas Air, Cathay Pacific, Dubai Aerospace Enterprise, Emirates SkyCargo, Guggenheim and Korean Air all have placed orders for the airplane.