Boeing takes stock of freighter orders

“WE’VE been on a great run with three consecutive years of record freighters orders,” said Jim Edgar, regional director, cargo marketing – Boeing Commercial Airplanes.
“But that’s just the beginning – this year we’re anticipating a series of milestones that bring about major improvements in fuel efficiency, environmental responsibility and operational flexibility. Our two new large freighters will provide a 16 to 34 per cent improvement in CO2 and fuel efficiency relative to today’s large freighters, and will be significantly quieter than Stage 4 community noise requirements.
“We’ve been laying the groundwork for a transformation that really takes off in 2008. We began major assembly of the 777 Freighter in January and will move forward with the completion of assembly, flight test, certification and a fourth-quarter delivery of the first 777 Freighter to Air France, and we’ll achieve critical design milestones for the 747-8 Freighter and the start of 747-8F production. These airplanes will be the key revenue generators for the air cargo industry for years to come,” said Edgar.
Orders for new Boeing production freighters have numbered 74, 81 and 83 for 2005, 2006 and 2007, respectively, for an unprecedented total of 258 airplanes, accounting for about 14 per cent of total Boeing commercial airplane order value during that time.
Development of the 747-8F will proceed apace as General Electric conducts testing on its GEnx and Boeing reaches 50 per cent design release during the early part of the year. Flying test-bed runs and 90 per cent design release, will be accomplished mid-year and production on the 747-8F will start in late 2008, leading to a busy 2009, that features the airplane’s rollout, first flight, certification and first delivery to Cargolux of Luxembourg.

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