The oldest Boeing 747 in service says goodbye to the skies


Tucson - The Boeing 747-100 of the U.S. engine manufacturer General Electric carried out its last flight.

The aircraft was the oldest Boeing 747 still in active service and served with General Electric more than 26 years as a flying test platform for various engines newly developed.

The Boeing 747-100 of General Electric left the assembly line on October 17, 1969. The aircraft made its commercial debut with Pan American World Airways in 1970. General Electric took the possession of the plane in 1992 after Pan Am ceased its operations.

The conversion from a passenger plane to a testbed requires significant adjustments, including removing seats, strengthening the wing and tail structure and installing data systems for measuring the engine performence.

GE's 747-100 provided flight performance data on more than 11 different engine models including those for the Boeing 777 and Airbus A380.

In 2010, General Electric bought a newer model, a Boeing 747-400 that was in service with Japan Airlines.

GE Aviation used the superjumbo last time on a test flight on January 25, 2017.

The Boeing 747-100 was decommissioned in January this year and now flew to the Pima Air & Space Museum in Tucson, where a unique collection of more than 350 aircraft is located.