Boeing 747

  • Type: Aircraft
  • Engines: 4 Turbine engines
  • Capacity: seats
  • Manufacturers:
    • Boeing (747, VC-25 / E-4)

The Boeing 747 was conceived following the failure of Boeing to secure a USAF contract for a large strategic transport (the winner of this competition was Lockheed and their C-5 Galaxy). Seeing the need for a large passenger aircraft, Boeing dismissed the option of developing their 707 further and began the most famous and most ambitious project in the company’s history.

The Boeing Model 747-100 was announced on 13 April 1966 supported with orders from PanAm for twenty-five aircraft. It was not until further orders were received from Japan Airlines and Lufthansa that, on 25 April 1966, the decision was made to start construction. The maiden flight did not occur until 9 February 1969. Everything about it was giant-sized, including the 200,000,000 cu ft (5,663,400 cu.m) single-roofed factory in which to build it; some 20,000 people involved initially on the project; and the astronomic production costs. The new aircraft, RA001, emerged from the plant with 158 orders. The next four aircraft that were constructed were used in the certification programme, and collectively flew some 1400 hours. With the certification flying completed towards the end of 1969, FAA approval was granted on 30 December 1969. This was followed by Pan Am’s inauguration of the type on its first service from New York to London on 22 January 1970. Boeing went on to deliver 250 of the 747-100 senes. The last built in 1982.

On 11 October 1970, when the first Boeing 747-200 model flew. Developed as a long-range model, it had greater fuel capacity, increased gross weight (from 334,751 kg to an initial 351,535 kg). The 100th 747 was delivered on 26 February 1971 and by September the following year the 747 had flown 1 million hours.