Industry Boeing delivers last ever 747 to Atlas Air

Boeing has celebrated the delivery of the final Boeing 747 in its history. A big chapter of aviation history is concluded with Atlas Air taking over aircraft number 1574.

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Thousands of spectators, former and current employees and customers and suppliers gathered at Boeing’s factory at Everett, Washington, to witness the final delivery of a Boeing 747. After more than a half century of production, the manufacturer has closed this chapter.

In Everett, Boeing started the 747 journey in 1967. Over the years, the manufacturer developed many variants of the famous jumbo jet and has delivered 1574 aircraft over the life of the program. The 747 stands for connecting cultures and people and has played its part in how the aircraft industry works today.

Stan Deal, president and chief executive officer of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, commented: "This monumental day is a testament to the generations of Boeing employees who brought to life the airplane that 'shrank the world,' and revolutionized travel and air cargo as the first widebody […] It is fitting to deliver this final 747-8 Freighter to the largest operator of the 747, Atlas Air, where the 'Queen' will continue to inspire and empower innovation in air cargo."

"We are honored to continue our long history of flying this iconic aircraft for our customers around the world," added John Dietrich, president and chief executive officer, Atlas Air Worldwide. "Atlas Air was founded over 30 years ago with a single 747-200 converted freighter, and since then, we have spanned the globe operating nearly every fleet type of the 747, including the Dreamlifter, Boeing's 747 Large Cargo Freighter, for the transport of 787 Dreamliner parts. We are grateful to Boeing for their shared commitment to safety, quality, innovation and the environment, and for their partnership to ensure the continued success of the 747 program as we operate the aircraft for decades to come."

The “Queen of the Skies” was the first twin-aisle aircraft and after the first models Boeing developed the 747-400, which was the most popular model. In 2005, the manufacturer launched the final 747-8 model. But as aircraft with two engines were getting more and more efficient, there was not much demand for a four-holer anymore.

For the future, Boeing will focus on the freight variants of the 777 and 777X, for which the manufacturer has already collected orders. Atlas Air will continue to operate the 747 in freight operations and also passenger operations.

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