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    American Airlines and Aviation Partners Boeing Announce First Revenue Flight of a Boeing 767-300ER Featuring Blended Winglets

    FORT WORTH, Texas, March 9 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- American Airlines and Aviation Partners Boeing (APB) announced today the first revenue flight of a Boeing 767-300ER with APB's Blended Winglets™. American Flight #78 left Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport Sunday, March 8, at 8:35 p.m. with 204 passengers onboard and arrived ahead of schedule at London Heathrow Airport on Monday, March 9, at 10:26 a.m.

    "We are pleased that APB chose to partner with American to develop and install these Blended Winglets, and we are especially happy that we also operated the first flight with customers onboard a winglet-equipped 767-300ER," said Bob Reding, American's Executive Vice President - Operations. "The fuel savings and emissions reductions that we will achieve are one more step in our efforts to both moderate costs and shrink the impact we have on our environment - two goals that go hand-in-hand."

    The increased lift provided by the winglets, without a corresponding increase of engine power, improves fuel efficiency. Each airplane equipped with the winglets is expected to save up to 500,000 gallons of fuel annually depending on miles flown, according to APB. American plans to install winglets on its entire 58 aircraft fleet of 767-300ERs, which could result in a total savings of up to 29 million gallons of fuel per year. That represents a significant potential increase to the 111 million gallons of fuel that American currently saves through its Fuel Smart efficiency program.

    In addition to the fuel cost savings, this 767-300ER fuel efficiency improvement will result in a reduction of up to 277,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions annually, according to APB. The 11-foot high winglets could also extend the range of an aircraft by as much as 360 nautical miles and improve take-off performance, providing as much as 12,000 pounds of additional payload.

    "The 767-300ER Blended Winglets have been the most complicated product development program in the history of Aviation Partners Boeing. We owe a huge debt of gratitude to our launch partner, American Airlines, and our other pre-certification customers for their continued faith in APB and Blended Winglet technology and their patience and support through a challenging certification process. These winglets represent the largest piece of structure ever retrofitted to a commercial aircraft wing and will dramatically change forever both the appearance and performance of the 767-300ER," said John Reimers, Aviation Partners Boeing President and CEO.

    The winglet installation work was accomplished by American's Maintenance & Engineering organization at its maintenance base in Kansas City, Mo. American expects to modify all of its 767-300ER aircraft by 2011. American has already completed Blended Winglet installation on its fleets of 124 Boeing 757s and 77 Boeing 737s.

    American's in-house maintenance organization accomplishes more than 90 percent of American's maintenance. American Maintenance Services will also install the B-767 as well as B-757 and B-737 Blended Winglets on other Aviation Partners Boeing customers' aircraft at its existing base maintenance facilities in Tulsa, Okla.; Kansas City; or Fort Worth, Texas.

    "Our mechanics and engineers are highly experienced, and we have outstanding facilities and the resources necessary to excel at this kind of complex structural installation," said Carmine Romano, Senior Vice President - Maintenance & Engineering, for American. "The efficiency that allows us to do this kind of work in house also allows us to provide the same service to our customers, and they simply can't get that anywhere else."

    APB began the flight test certification program in February 2008 with a leased American Airlines 767-300ER. The two companies jointly began the winglet development program early in 2007.

    About APB

    Aviation Partners Boeing is a joint venture of Aviation Partners, Inc. and The Boeing Company. Based in Seattle, APB has now certified its patented Blended Winglet technology, in chronological order, for the Boeing Business Jet, 737-800, 737-700, 737-300, 757-200, 737-900, 737-500, and 767-300ER.. APB is also currently in the process of certifying Blended Winglets for the 757-300. Today, over 2,800800 Boeing aircraft have been equipped with Blended Winglets. By 2010, APB expects that Blended Winglets will have saved the world's airlines over 2 billion gallons of fuel.

    About American Airlines Maintenance Services

    American Airlines Maintenance Services offers a full line of airframe, engine and component, and line maintenance services customizing those services to meet the specific needs of the client. AAMS has more than 60 customers - 80 percent of which are repeat business - located in North and South America. Services are provided by American's overhaul bases in Tulsa, Okla.; Fort Worth, Texas; Kansas City, Mo., and at line maintenance locations in the United States, Latin America and Europe.

    About American Airlines

    American Airlines, American Eagle and the AmericanConnection® airlines serve 250 cities in 40 countries with, on average, more than 3,400 daily flights. The combined network fleet numbers more than 900 aircraft. American's award-winning Web site, AA.com®, provides users with easy access to check and book fares, plus personalized news, information and travel offers. American Airlines is a founding member of the oneworld® Alliance, which brings together some of the best and biggest names in the airline business, enabling them to offer their customers more services and benefits than any airline can provide on its own. Together, its members serve nearly 700 destinations in over 140 countries and territories. American Airlines, Inc. and American Eagle Airlines, Inc. are subsidiaries of AMR Corporation. AmericanAirlines, American Eagle, AmericanConnection, AA.com, We know why you fly and AAdvantage are registered trademarks of American Airlines, Inc.

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    SOURCE: American Airlines

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