The Boeing 777-200 Longer Range airplane with a derivative version of the General Electric GE90 engine has been named to the Top 100 Best of What's New for 2000 by Popular Science magazine. The magazine announced honorees at a ceremony in New York today and the list will be published in the December issue of Popular Science.
"It's very gratifying to see the 777 Longer-Range Program receive this attention for it's unique ability to bring direct flights between city pairs that are as far as 8,860 nautical miles apart for the first time," said Lars Andersen, program manager for the 777 Longer-Range Program. "On behalf of the entire 777 team, I want to thank Popular Science magazine for recognizing the work we are doing on the world's longest-range commercial airplane."
With its increased range, the 777-200 Longer-Range airplane will fly farther than any other commercial jet. It will allow airlines to introduce direct service between cities such as Los Angeles and Bangkok; Los Angeles and Mumbai; Singapore and Dallas; Singapore and New York; Tokyo and Lima, Peru; London and Perth, Australia. The longest flight it would be capable of would be longer than 18 hours. Traditionally, such long-range routes are serviced through a network of connecting flights that can sometimes require passengers to switch planes multiple times and take literally days of travelling.
In studying passenger preferences, Boeing has found that the desire for direct, non-stop routes is rapidly increasing. The 777 is ideally suited to meet these needs because it brings unparalleled comfort and economical operations to airlines that are ready to meet these emerging passenger needs.
The first 777 model, the 777-200, entered service in 1995. Since then, four additional 777 models have been launched, including the longer-range models in February 2000. Since its introduction, the 777 has won numerous accolades and praise for its new approach to passenger comfort, crew work load and reliability.
The modifications being made to the baseline 777 to achieve its significant additional range capabilities are mostly focused on the GE90-115B engine and strengthening the airframe and landing gear to accommodate the increased takeoff weight and engine thrust of the latest derivative of the popular GE90 engine. To improve the efficiencies of the airframe, Boeing is adding 6.5 feet to the wing tip on each side of the airplane to further enhance its capabilities and making other modifications.
Boeing anticipates a market demand for more than 500 of the new longer-range 777 airplanes, with about 45 percent of those going to Asian operators. Customers so far include Air France, All Nippon Airways, EVA Airways, GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS), International Lease Finance Corporation (ILFC) and Japan Airlines.