Boeing has outlined the development schedule for its 777X programme, which is aimed for a service-entry in 2020.

Part production for the large twinjet is to begin in 2017, with the first flight scheduled to take place in 2019.

After the programme was officially launched at this year’s Dubai air show, top level design for the future 777 derivative is to be finalised by the end of next year.This will be followed by firming up the aircraft’s configuration in 2015 and detailed design due to take place in 2016.

The schedule has been laid down to “catch the front end of the replacement wave for the 777-300ER and 747-400”, says Scott Fancher, vice-president and general manager for airplane development.

General Electric has also outlined its schedule for the GE9X engine, which will be the only powerplant available on the 777-8X and -9X.

After work on the engine started in 2010, the design is to be finalised in 2015. Ground testing is scheduled to begin in 2016, with flight tests due to follow a year later. Certification is planned for 2018.

Fuel burn will be 10% lower than on the GE90-115B-powered 777-300ER, while the GE9X should have a 5% lead in specific fuel consumption over the Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engine on the rival Airbus A350, says GE.

Meanwhile, maintenance costs for the GE9X will be “comparable” to the GE90 series, the manufacturer adds.

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Source: Cirium Dashboard