The Boeing 747 Dreamlifter – during the design of the Boeing 747 LCF (Large Cargo Freighter) – is a wide-body transport aircraft, a modification of the Boeing 747. The modification was developed specifically for the transportation of large-sized elements of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner — hence the name Dreamlifter.
In the mid-2000s, the new Boeing 787 project, being the most technologically sophisticated Boeing aircraft, required many partners of the company worldwide to connect. Feasibility studies made it clear that the transportation of parts of the future liner by sea may delay production and, therefore, it was decided to deliver the parts by air. To do this, it was planned to modify the model 747-400. The world experience of such work has already been: Airbus Beluga, and earlier Super Guppy aircraft were quite successfully operated in Europe.
In addition to the main branch of Boeing, the Moscow bureau of the company, the American company Rocketdyne, and the Spanish Gamesa Corporación Tecnológica took part in the development. Also involved were American General Electric, Chinese EVA Air, and Taiwanese Evergreen Group. The aircraft was built based on four used 747-400.
The first loading of parts 787 on the Large Cargo Freighter was in June 2006. In December 2006, Boeing announced that the 747 LCF would be called Dreamlifter, citing the name 787 – Dreamliner. The certification was originally planned for early 2007 but then was postponed to June 2007. As part of the flight test program, LCF has already begun shipping Dreamliner parts from around the world to Everett, Washington for final assembly. The US Federal Aviation Administration issued a certificate for the 747 LCF on June 2, 2007. Dreamlifter completed 437 test hours in flight and 639 hours on the ground.
Because of their unusual appearance, Large Cargo Freighter is compared to the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile and the Hughes H-4 Hercules. The awkward look was compounded by the fact that, due to the need for immediate testing, the first model was not painted for a long time, Scott Carson, president of Boeing, jokingly apologized to “Boeing 747 father” Joe Sutter: “Sorry for what we did with your plane.”
Wing delivery dates for the Boeing 787 from Japan were reduced from 30 days by sea to 8 hours of flight at 747 LCF. Although the LCFs are used solely as a transport aircraft for the delivery of parts of 787, they are listed in the fleet of airlines that provide services and crew, while Boeing pays for fuel costs. The fourth Boeing 747 Dreamlifter was put into operation in February 2010.
- Type: special heavy transport aircraft
- Power plant: four twin-circuit turbojet engines Pratt Whitney PW4062 at 28,710 kgf each
- Maximum load: 113.4 tons, the volume of the transport compartment Dreamlifter – 1840 cubic meters
- Practical ceiling: 13,000 m
- Range: 7,800 km
- Maximum take-off weight: 364,240 t
- Cruising speed: 878 km / h
- Wingspan: 64.4 m
- Wing area: 560 square meters. m
- Length: 71.68 m
- Height: 21.54 m.