Boeing engineers recently completed 25 percent of all product definition releases for the new 767-400ER (extended range) derivative airplane. Completion of these releases has allowed Boeing factories and suppliers to begin fabricating tooling and airplane parts assemblies.
"Our team has made remarkable progress in the 12 months since we formally launched the 767-400ER Program," said John Quinlivan, 767-400ER program manager. "Here are just a few examples: The landing gear team came up with the all-new landing gear concept and eliminated nine months from the traditional development schedule. Our patented raked wingtip design reduced airplane weight by more than 3,600 lb. (1,632 kg), while increasing airplane performance. We've incorporated the design talents of Boeing Douglas Products Division employees, who sit at work stations more than 3,000 miles away, by using computing technology that allows them to be `virtually co-located' with their team members in Everett," Quinlivan added.
Douglas Products Division in Long Beach, Calif., is designing the raked (swept-back) wingtips and aft-most section of the airplane.
Boeing will incorporate an advanced flight deck in the 767-400ER that provides commonality with the 757/767 family, as well as the Next-Generation 737 and 777. The new interior of this derivative borrows the smooth lines of the 777 architecture, offering travelers a feeling of spacious comfort. The new airplane will be 21 feet (6.4 m) longer and its wingspan will extend 14.5 feet (4.4 m) farther than the 767-300ER. These changes will increase passenger capacity by about 15 percent, to 245 seats in a three-class configuration.
"We've not only stretched the airplane, but our abilities and our spirit," Quinlivan said.
Boeing launched the 767-400ER Program April 28, 1997, with an order for 21 airplanes from Delta Air Lines. Since then, orders have totaled 52. The first airplane is scheduled to roll out of the factory in August 1999. It is scheduled to be delivered in May 2000.