There Is Some New Information From The Aviation Legends From Seattle
Building on its 777-300ER, Boeing is evaluating its next moves in the 300 to 415-seat market, with its conceptual 777-8X/9X, powered by a smaller GE90-derived engine, composite wing, a possible fuselage stretch and shrink and higher economy seating capacity, marking what is likely to become the second major incremental evolution of the 777 family, 15% better than today's aircraft, say those familiar with the studies.
The options to Boeing now coming into focus look to grow the 213ft metallic wingspan of the long-range twin to as much as 234ft (71.3m) with a carbon fiber design, 10ft (3.05m) wider than the 747-8. Initial estimates being evaluated by Boeing point to a lower maximum takeoff weight of around 753,000lbs (342t) for the 777-9X, which would anchor the family and preserving or growing the payload range capability of just under 8,000nm (14,800km) for today's aircraft
Emirates CEO Tim Clark, whose 777 fleet is the largest in the world, told Flightglobal the Dubai-based carrier was closely working with Boeing to design the 777-300ER successor, saying the airframer is "ready to rock and roll" with Emirates eager to sign up as launch customer if the final configuration meets its requirements.
Clark is hoping for a 777 that can fly a 50t payload, by its rules, between Dubai and Los Angeles. Today the 777-300ER is payload restricted by 20 seats on that route.
To power the new jet, Boeing and General Electric look to be investigating a scaled down GE90, part of its GE9X study, evaluating a 325cm (128in) diameter fan with a lower 99,500lb thrust, a reduction of 15,500lbs from the 343cm (135in) GE90-115B that powers the 777-300ER today. The engine would draw on technology introduced on the GEnx platforms, as well as implement ceramic matrix composites for the turbine section.
As part of the studies, Boeing is examining optimizing the fuselage around the new larger wing, looking at both a fuselage stretch and a shrink of the 777-300ER. One conceptualization of the -9X would be an additional stretch to the 777-300ER, while the -8X would be a shrink of the 365-seat jet, The 777-8X and -9X would allow Boeing to span the products between the proposed 330-seat 787-10X and 467-seat 747-8.
I Don't Know About You, But This Is Some Very Good News!
Boeing Is Launching The 737 MAX, Is Doing Very Well With The 787 Dreamliners, The 747-8i Intercontinental, And The Current 777 Models, The 777-300ER Being The More Popular (Later Customers Include British Airways And American.) A Visual Example May Take Shape Soon. 2017 Is The Expected Fly Date