McDonnell Douglas MD-87


Country of Origin
United States of America
Short to medium range airliner
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.
Two 68.9kN (20,000lb) Pratt & Whitney JT8D-217C turbofans. Other JT8D-200 series engines available optionally.
Max speed 925km/h (500kt), long range cruising speed 811km/h (438kt). Range with 130 passengers and reserves 4393km (2372nm), or optionally 5248km (2833nm). Range with max fuel 5522km (2980nm), or optionally 6764km (3650nm),
Operating empty with standard fuel 33,237kg (73,274lb), operating empty with optional fuel 33,965kg (74,880lb), max takeoff 63,505kg (140,000lb), optionally 67,810kg (149,500lb).
Wing span 32.86m (107ft 10in), length 39.75m (130ft 5in), height 9.30m (30ft 6in). Wing area 112.3m2 (1209.0sq ft).
Flightcrew of two. Max single-class seating for 139. Typical two class seating for 109, comprising 12 premium and 97 economy class pax.
Of total MD-80 sales of 1191, 75 were for MD-87s.
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McDonnell Douglas MD-87
The backbone of this section is from the The International Directory of Civil Aircraft by Gerard Frawley and used with permission. To get your own copy of the book click here.