The second Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental completed its first flight yesterday. The aircraft, named RC021, flew for three hours and twenty minutes over Washington state, US. During the flight, the B747-8 reached an altitude of 28,000 feet (8,534m) and airspeed of 275 knots, or about 509 km per hour.
“This is another great milestone for our flight test program and shows the progress we are making toward delivery of our passenger airplane,” said Elizabeth Lund, Vice President & General Manager of the 747 program.
RC021 will be used primarily for testing the plane’s interior systems, such as heating, venting and air conditioning, smoke detection and galleys. In addition, Boeing will conduct fuel consumption and reliability tests on the aircraft.
The new B747-8 will be the largest passenger aircraft ever made by Boeing, and will provide 12 percent lower costs than its predecessor, the 747-400. Boeing has so far racked up 33 orders for the passenger version of the aircraft, including 20 from Lufthansa and five from Korean Air.