The McDonnell Douglas MD-87 is a shortened version of the successful MD-80 series.
A reversal of the trend from the DC-9 to the MD-80 series, the MD-87 combines the advanced features introduced on the MD-80 (most notably the Pratt & Whitney JT8D-200 engines) into a 5.3m (17ft 5in) shorter length fuselage similar in length to the DC-9-30.
The MD-87 features the 39.75m (130ft 5in) fuselage length; plus an EFIS flightdeck (the MD-87 was the first aircraft of the MD-80 series to introduce EFIS, with two flight management system controls, displays and cockpit) and an optional Sundstrand Head-Up Display; Pratt & Whitney JT8D-217C turbofans (which are approximately 2% more efficient than the 217A); the cruise performance package improvements introduced on late production MD-80s, including the extended low drag tail cone, fillet fairing between the engine pylons and the fuselage and low drag flap hinge fairings; and increased height fin to compensate for the loss of moment arm due to the shorter fuselage.
The MD-87 was optionally available with extra front and rear cargo compartment auxiliary fuel tanks to extend range, and other engines in the JT8D-200 series. In other respects the MD-87 is essentially identical to the MD-80 series.
McDonnell Douglas launched development of the MD-87 on January 3 1985, following the placement of launch orders from Finnair and Austrian in December 1984. First flight took place on December 4 1986 and US FAA certification was granted on October 21 1987.
MD-87 sales were relatively small and mainly to traditional Douglas customers. Notable operators include Iberia (with 24), SAS (18) and Japan Air System (eight). Other operators include e.g. Finnair, Aero Lloyd, Aeromexico, Great American, Austrian, Spanair, Reno Air, and Midway.
By the time Boeing and McDonnell Douglas had merged in 1997 all MD-87 orders had been fulfilled and Boeing no longer actively offers the type.
Copyright Airliners.net, some information Copyright Aerospace Publications
Back to Aircraft Data & History section.
Back to frontpage of Airliners.net