Sunday, 20 November 2011

First photos of Cathay Pacific Boeing 747-800 - Hong Kong

Aircraft Type:  Boeing 747-800
Airline: Cathay Pacific
Date: November 2011
Location: Hong Kong
Registration: B-LJA
Note:  This particular plane is a CARGO plane, not a passenger aircraft.

It's not everyday that one is lucky enough to have a tour of the latest model of the Boeing 747 (800) to the list of current aircraft in the World.  I am very grateful to Cathay Pacific for the splendid opportunity.  This beauty remains parked at the Cargo Terminal at Hong Kong International Airport and will depart tomorrow some time.  After speaking to Cathay staff, they mentioned that it will do quite a bit of domestic testing of routes and then will start its international services.

The 747-800 Boeing plane is the latest, high capacity 747 that is more efficient, quieter and keeps the environment high on its agenda.

Seat-mile costs are less, Boeing claiming 13% lower than the 747-400 and 2% lower trip costs.  It offers 16% more cargo volume than the 747-400  Boeing also boasts that it consumes 11% less fuel per passenger than the Airbus A380.  There are no worries about it serving at any airports and pilots will easily manage with the new technology.

It has a range of 14,815km allowing for greater connectivity amongst cities around the World.  Boeing claims the 747-800 has no competitors.  At present, I don't doubt their statement.  All I wonder is:  for how long?  It's only a matter of time until Airbus fights back and I'm sure they've had the technology in the pipeline, waiting for the right moment to announce it.

I love the aviation world, can't you tell?  It's exciting!


It's time for me to take you on a guided tour via the photos I have taken.

Soon to be Captain Jonathan :P 

Up close and personal with the painting.  It's really quite interesting to 'feel' the paintwork.  A little different to what I expected.

Ok, this photo is one of my favourites.  Standing here was like being inside an OVEN!  It was extremely hot, windy and noisy.  I think for a good few hours my hearing was a bit dimmed...

The awesome engines.

Just casually chilling with my friend...

It wasn't thaaat heavy...

I'm not going to lie: it's HUGE!

Yes, once again, look how big this beauty is!

Did I mention the undercarriage looks sexy?  It looks very smooth and sharp at the same time.

Everything about it is massive.  I love the new engines too!

Inside the Cargo holding area.  It was clean, fresh smelling, air-conditioned (I guess we're in Hong Kong right...?) and yes I'll mention it again:  spotless!

Here are the rollers for the Cargo containers.

Closeup of how this operates.  Quite a fascinating bit of technology.

I was glad to see quality seats for the crew.  They were very comfortable too.

Aircraft bathroom with all of its electronics outside.


Same switches - thought they'd look better in black and white.

Finally, the cockpit!

The size is quite decent, much better than a 737!  Sometimes, If I were to become a pilot, I wonder how I'd ever fit in a 737 anyway...

More of the cockpit!

Crew rest area - was a little on the small side, but then again, good enough!

Again, detail of the rollers just before the Cargo door exit.

View from the rear-end of the plane.

Although the special scheme looks quite ordinary at first, after several hours it sort of grows on you :)

What I realised about it is that it's the simplicity that makes it such an effective special scheme.  Outline of the Hong Kong skyline, with big and bold lettering.  Represents Hong Kong as an major International player in trade.  Explains why Hong Kong is classified as a 'Global City' and 'ASIA'S WORLD CITY'

Rear-end of the cargo-hold.

It was exhilarating standing under this beast!  I only wish I could one day do the same with the Airbus A380!

Close up of gears.  Look how clean they keep it!  I guess it is relatively new though.  Can't wait to see how it'll look in a few months time.

The wheels are big, I won't lie...

Size comparison - check out the people underneath the aircraft.

I don't blame the guys for staring... She is gorgeous!

Close up of front landing gear.

An interesting angle.  I like this one for some reason.

The United in the background looks like a little baby in comparison with the 747-800!

Here were are, underneath the tail.

Yep, it's long!

Taking advantage of the cool reflections.

All photos above are at the front of the cargo hold.

Glad to see these :P

Yes, a ladder!  Was very exciting climbing it, knowing that it leads to the Cockpit!

Would not be a nice fall...

The female representative from Boeing.  What I love is the fact the pilots can hang their suits here.

Opened cargo door.

I looked at this for a good whole minute!  I was relieve to see the red light... :P
And that's it!  I hope you enjoyed my tour.  It was a wonderful experience and I would like to thank Cathay Pacific once again for the invitation.

Cathay Pacific really cares about their Public Relations.  They were kind enough to offer a souvenir!


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