Boeing 717 Airliner
Boeing 717-300 (Boeing Photo)
Boeing 717 is a twin-engine aircraft designed for
short-field operations. It was originally started as the McDonnell
Douglas MD-95 in
1995 and was
renamed the Boeing 717 after the Boeing Company and McDonnell
Douglas merged in 1997. A standard 717 carries 106 passengers.
The tailplane and elevators are mounted to the top of the vertical fin,
rather than the more common location on the fuselage at the base of the
fin. This tail looks like a T when viewed from the front, hence it is
called T-tail. Since the tailplane is kept well out of the
airflow behind the wing, it gives smoother air flow and better pitch
The T-tail arrangement permits the rear fuselage to be used for
the aircraft's engines. This is why the T-tail arrangement is
also commonly found on airliners with rear mounted jet engines.
The Boeing(McDonnell Douglas) DC-9, Boeing 727, Vickers VC-10,
Hawker-Siddeley Trident and BAC1-11 all used the T-tail for this reason.
AirTran Airways, a carrier flying to destinations
throughout the eastern United States, has 50 Boeing 717s in regular
service. More than 100 Boeing 717s are in service in addition to
AirTran Airways. Other operators include Hawaiian
Airlines, Midwest Express Airlines, Bangkok
Airlines(Greece), Aerolineas Baleares (Spain) and QantasLink(Australia).