Boeing has started production of the first 737 MAX fuselage stringers at Boeing Fabrication Integrated AeroStructures in Auburn, Washington. Stringers run the length of the fuselage structure giving it stability and strength.
After forming, Boeing will send the stringers to Spirit Aerosystems in Wichita, Kansas, for incorporation into the first 737 MAX fuselage. From there the fuselage will be shipped to Boeing’s Renton, Washington facility where Boeing employees will build the 737 MAX. The programme is on track to begin final assembly of the first 737 MAX in 2015. The aircraft will be part of the flight test fleet and is scheduled to fly in 2016.
The 737 MAX incorporates the latest technology CFM International LEAP-1B engines, Advanced Technology winglets and other improvements designed to deliver the highest efficiency, reliability and passenger comfort in the single-aisle market. Boeing says the 737 MAX will be 14% more fuel-efficient than today’s most efficient Next-Generation 737s – and 20% better than the original Next-Generation 737s when they first entered service.