The 747-8 flight test program has passed another milestone with the first flight of the third and final 747-8F flight test aircraft, RC521, on March 18.
Crewed by pilots Captains Paul Stemer and Keith Otsuka, plus systems operator Ralph Chaffin, RC 521 took off from Paine Field in Everett at 3:27 pm for a two-and-a-half-hour flight before landing at Boeing Field in Seattle. The aircraft reached an altitude of 30,000ft and an airspeed of 245kt.
RC521’s flight test duties will include fuel-mileage testing, part of the three aircraft, 3700 flight hour test and certification program.
Boeing says the first 747-8 Freighter delivery is planned for the fourth quarter of this year.