Lufthansa's First Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental at Everett Flightline - 2011
From a press release: Lufthansa's first Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental with the future registration D-ABYE ("Yankee Echo") completed its first flight on Tuesday, 26 April, 2011. The plane took off from Everett Airport on the site of the Boeing manufacturing plant at 9.26 hours, local time. During its three hours and 20 minutes in the air, the new jumbo jet climbed to an altitude of 8,534 metres and flew at 509 kilometres per hour on the clock. The first flight marks the start of a five-month flight test programme, during which Boeing will rigorously test the cabin configuration. The air-conditioning, oxygen supplies for passengers and crew, the in-flight entertainment system or the robustness of the cabin cladding are just a few of the points the US aircraft manufacturer will tick off in around 300 flight hours. Manoeuvres, that take the aircraft to the limits of its operating capacity as part of certification, are no longer in the programme. Such tests were successfully completed by the B747-8F freighter version and the red-painted B747-8 Intercontinental prior to the official unveiling of the new jet on 13 February 2011. After the flight tests, the "Yankee Echo" will return to the Boeing hangar in Everett, about 50 kilometres north of Seattle to be readied for delivery in early 2012. All four engines, the brakes and tyres as well as the complete cabin cladding, carpeting and washrooms will be renewed. Lufthansa was the first airline customer to opt for the passenger version of the Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental. In December 2006, the airline placed orders for 20 of the new jumbo jets and secured options on a further 20 of the type. The fuselage of the new jumbo has not only been lengthened by 5.6 metres, the aircraft is also equipped with newly designed wings and state-of-the-art engines from General Electric (Type GEnx Ã¢€" 2B67). Fuel consumption is well below the level of previous long-haul aircraft. Compared with the "classical" B747-400, the new jumbo jet reduces operating costs by 30 per cent. The B747-8 International reduces CO2 emissions by 16 per cent and is 30 per cent quieter.