The Douglas Aircraft Company official introduced the world's largest commercial airliner--the Super 61 DC-8--on Monday (24 Jan).
The Douglas Aircraft Company official introduced the world's largest commercial airliner--the Super 61 DC-8--on Monday (24 Jan). The huge plane was rolled out of a Douglas hanger at Long Beach California, on Monday (and on Sunday for preview purposes).
The Super 61 is essentially a DC-8 jetliner which has been stretched out amidships by 37 feet. This makes the new ship 187.4 fee long. It can carry 251 passengers, as compared to the 189 passengers carried by the largest version of the DC-8. This increase of thirty percent in capacity makes the Super 61 the most efficient airliner ever made, according to Douglas. The firm says it can be operated at a cost of one cent per seat mile, the lowest such figure in aviation history.
The 251 passengers can be carried 3900 miles without refuelling. With maximum payload weight aboard (passengers and freight) the plane has a range of 2860 miles. Cargo capacity has been increased proportionately with the passenger capacity increase.
A cargo version of the craft is planned. The first Super 61 will undergoing test flights in the spring. Three U.S. airlines and Air Canada have already purchased 23 of the craft.
During the roll-out ceremonies, the Super 61 was compared to a standard DC-8 and to the DC-9, a medium range jet.