On 20 May, Boeing inaugurated their future B777X’s new, composite wings production factory. Covering an area of 1,184,000 square feet (110,000 m2) - the equivalent of 24 football fields - the building is located in Everett (northeast United States), close to the future US long haul’s final assembly line.
The more than one billion dollar gigantic project took over a year to complete, having begun in 2014.
Production of the first units of the Boeing 777X is to begin next year, with its entry into service in early 2020. Available in two versions (-8x and -9X), the plane will be capable of carrying 350 to 425 passengers over a range of between 8,700 miles (14,000 km) and 9,900 miles (16,000 km).
A main feature of the aircraft is its folding wing tips enabling its wingspan to be reduced, when on the ground, from 236 feet to 213 feet (72 to 65 metres). Being a direct Airbus A350 competitor, orders for the B777X, to date, total 320, together with commitments from six airlines. Depending on the version, its list price is 371 to 400 million dollars.
The new plane will complement the 777 range (available in five variants including one cargo and four passenger versions), the first of which was commissioned in 1995.