The last Queen in the Sky left the Seattle pens between Tuesday and Wednesday and will be delivered to a shipping company in January. Boeing has assembled the 1,574th version — and last note — of the 747, a double-decker that has made aviation history over the past half century and is capable of carrying up to 500 people at a time. Thus begins the countdown to this model, which will remain in the sky for a while, but will gradually disappear from circulation.
The photos, released by the US airline giant, show the last Boeing 747 leaving the huge Everett hangars, on the outskirts of Seattle. This four-engine aircraft will not carry passengers but cargo, as the new owner will be Atlas Air. The decision not to produce the plane anymore comes from a number of factors: the age of the model, the presence of four engines (which consume a lot of kerosene) and the arrival of the pandemic, which prevented intercontinental communications for several months.
The 747 project – renamed the Queen of the Sky by enthusiasts – saw the light in 1965 when Boeing decided to build the world’s largest passenger airliner. Team Leadership – As said in 2020 by courier – There is Juan Tripp, then president of Pan Am, and Joe Sutter, engineer of the aerospace giant. Sutter is also the one who managed to persuade everyone to raise the cabin, creating a second level to increase seating space: thus the famous hump above the cockpit was born.
Given the dimensions of the plane – 70.6 meters long and 64.4 wingspan – it was also necessary to build a maxi-shed built in Everett which still holds the record today as the world’s largest building (1,000 meters long and 500). 50,000 worked on the project and sixteen months later the first 747 arrived. On February 9, 1969, the test flights were carried out. On January 15, 1970, the first model was delivered to the American airline Pan Am. A week later, it made its first flight with passengers from New York to London.
In the following planes the plane becomes a star. But its role was diminished when Airbus’ European rivals built the A380, a double-decker jet capable of carrying up to 850 passengers, which became an icon of the sector thanks to luxury within Middle Eastern airlines such as Emirates or Qatar Airways. But the Rockets of Both Heavens became a victim of their size: the four engines and the restrictions on intercontinental flights make these specimens very expensive. Examples that will disappear in the next few years even if they are used in peak periods to transport hundreds of people at once.
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