Tag Archives: 747SP

The end of a former Braniff International Boeing 747SP in war-torn Yemen

The pictured Boeing 747SP-27 7O-YMN (msn 21786) was operated by Yemenia (Yemen Airways) (Sana’a) as a presidential airplane for the government. However the country of Yemen is currently locked in a civil war and a governmental crisis since 2011. The “government” of Yemen in essence is now gone and so is their presidential aircraft.

The war-torn county (below) has become a conflict zone between the Houthis and Islah, as well as the al-Qaeda insurgency.

Yemen map

Map: Google Maps.


According to Wikipedia, “In September 2014, the Houthis took over Sana’a, forcing Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar to flee the country, and prompted the formation of a new “unity government” including a variety of Yemeni factions. A draft constitution was discussed that would split Yemen into six federal regions, but the Houthis rejected the proposal. Hadi, his prime minister and cabinet resigned on January 22, 2015 amid a political impasse against the Houthis and ongoing violence in the capital. Three weeks later, the Houthis declared themselves in control of the government in what Abdul-Malik al-Houthi called a “glorious revolution”, although opposition politicians, neighboring states, and the United Nations decried the takeover as a coup d’état. Most of Yemen’s political factions and the international community have refused to recognise the Houthis’ authority, and UN-brokered talks on a power-sharing deal are ongoing. However, on February, 21, 2015 Hadi rescinded his resignation and declared he was still the legitimate president in Aden. Hadi called on government institutions to gather in Aden, which he proclaimed on March 21, 2015 was Yemen’s “economic and temporary capital” while Sana’a remains under Houthi control.”

7O-YMN has now been discovered as destroyed at Aden this month after Saudi-backed Yemeni forces recaptured Aden. The exact date of the destruction is unknown.

Yemenia logo

Meanwhile on March 30, 2015, as previously reported, Yemenia was forced to suspend all operations due to the on-going military conflict in the divided county which affected its base at Sana’a International Airport. Some aircraft, including 7O-YMN, had been moved to Aden as it was deemed to be relatively safe. However it was not safe for 7O-YMN.

This is the unglamorous end of this “Queen of the Skies”.

MSN 21786 started its airline career on April 23, 1980 when it was delivered brand new from Boeing to Braniff International Airways (Dallas) as N604BN (below).

Above Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com.

The Jumbo would next migrate to Aerolineas Argentinas as LV-OHV on September 12, 1980 where it would serve AR for almost 10 years (below).

Above Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com.

The airframe would next enter the VIP transport market, flying for the government of Qatar as the Qatar Amiri Flight as A7-AHM on February 7, 1996. Next it would move to Yemenia for the Yemen government on November 26, 2000 as 7O-YMN. The jetliner has been flying in Yemen colors for the past almost 15 years until this final blow. A sad end indeed.

Top Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best/AirlinersGallery.com.

Yemenia aircraft slide show: AG Airline Slide Show

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IranAir to retire its last Boeing 747SP on November 23

IranAir (Tehran) is the last passenger airline operator of the Boeing 747SP in the world. The flag carrier will offer a final farewell flight over Tehran on November 23. The Jumbo is currently operating between Tehran (Imam Khomeini International Airport) and Kuala Lumpur.

45 Boeing 747SPs (Special Performance) were built between 1974 and 1989 by Boeing. The “Stubby Jumbo” specialized in long, usually thin, routes in the early years.

In other news, IranAir will resume weekly Tehran-Moscow (Sheremetyevo) service on September 23 with Airbus A320s per Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Christian Volpati/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 747SP-86 EP-IAC (msn 21093) will operate the last flight. EP-IAC is pictured in the original 1962 markings arriving at Paris (Orly). EP-IAC was delivered new to IranAir on May 27, 1977.

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QANTAS Airways celebrates 60 years of flying to the United States


QANTAS Airways (Sydney) is celebrating the 60th anniversary of its first trans-Pacific services to the USA.

On May 15, 1954, a 60-passenger QANTAS Airways Lockheed 1049C Super Constellation aircraft departed Sydney for San Francisco and Vancouver. The journey to San Francisco took around 30 flying hours and involved fuel stops at Fiji, Canton Island and Hawaii.

QANTAS named this the Southern Cross Route in honor of Sir Charles Kingsford Smith and his crew who made the first flight in 1928.

QANTAS International CEO Simon Hickey said the sixty year milestone highlighted Qantas’ ongoing commitment to the USA.

“QANTAS is proud of its flying history to the US. Some of our most historic moments have been on the trans-Pacific route including the start of the jet age in 1959 with our first Boeing 707 services and introducing the largest commercial passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380, on the route in 2008,” said Mr Hickey.

“The milestone comes in a year where QANTAS is investing significantly in the customer experience to the US, including the opening of our new First and Business Lounges in Los Angeles and the introduction of A380 services between Sydney and Dallas/Ft. Worth from September.

The airline first established itself in North America in San Francisco in 1954, when it took over the operations of British Commonwealth Pacific Airline in September 1947.

This year also marks thirty years since QANTAS Airways began nonstop flights between Sydney, Melbourne and Los Angeles beginning in April 1984. These services were operated by the long-range Boeing 747SP (above) with a flying time of around 16 hours. Today, the flying time is around 13 hours.

QANTAS is the only carrier to operate A380 services between the US and Australia.

QANTAS flights to the USA include:

Direct daily Airbus A380 services from Sydney and Melbourne to Los Angeles

A daily Boeing 747-400 service from Sydney to New York via Los Angeles

A direct daily Boeing 747-400 service from Brisbane to Los Angeles

Three Boeing 767-300 services per week between Sydney and Honolulu and;

A daily Boeing 747-400 from Sydney to Dallas/Fort Worth, which will move to a six per week Airbus A380 service from September 29.

Copyright Photo: QANTAS Airways. The pictured Boeing 747SP-38 (Special Performance) VH-EAA (msn 22495) was handed over to QANTAS on January 19, 1981. VH-EAA is pictured over the Cascade Mountains in Washington State in the original 1970 color scheme.

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Historic Photo of the Day – May 21, 2013

China Airlines Boeing 747SP-09 B-1862 (msn 21300) MIA (Bruce Drum). Image: 102868.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum.

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IranAir claims it is being refused fuel in Europe

IranAir (Tehran) has again claimed it is being refused fuel by some companies in Europe due the United Nations sanctions.

Read the full report by Reuters:


Copyright Photo: Arnd Wolf. Click on the photo for further details.