Boeings new long awaited 787-passenger airliner is constructed in large sub sections around the United States, and the world utilizing a global supply chain. This creates a need for a new super-cargo aircraft having the ability to transport 787 sub assemblies. Boing decided to turn to their internal recourses to devise a transportation solution for the 787 project.
Boeing’s solution? Modify their largest production passenger jet, the 747 into a cargo plane. Re-engineering the fuselage; enlarging, widening, and adding a hinged door on the rear of the aircraft. 747-400 passenger jets were modified with their partner Evergreen Aviation Technologies Corporation, in Taipei Taiwan. The “Dreamlifter” will travel at 647.02 mph, or Mach .85. This is significantly faster than the average commercial passenger jet traveling at an average speed of 450 mph. This process began in 2005; “Dreamlifters” were not put into service until 2007. Boeing just created the largest transport plane in the world.
Only 4 Dreamlifters are currently in service. This new aircraft opens a new opportunity for air cargo transporters such as UPS, FedEx, and DHL. Air cargo primarily is time-sensitive and extremely expensive to ship. If Boeing put the “Dreamlifter” into production these aircraft could offer carriers faster route times, utilizing larger containers, and grater cargo volume. This would lead to increased efficiency in the shipping network for air carriers while also allowing them to be more cost competitive.