History of Boeing 757
In early 70s Boeing company started the research of middle range passenger airplane to replace the airplanes 727 and 737. New airplane had to have greatly improved profitability in connection with sharp increase in cost of fuel during this period (so-called "energy crisis"). In 1977 Boeing for the first time announced the airplane design 7N7 intended for transportation of 136 passengers. In the middle of 1978 a version of 160 seats was considered, and it was intended for replacement of 727 only. By this time the airplane received a designation 757. Further its capacity was increased to 189 seats.
Officially the development program of 757 was launched in August, 1978. The design of 160-seater version 757-100 was not further developed, and 757-200 for 189 passengers became the main one. The first customers of the airplane were British Airways and Eastern Airlines. The engines Pratt-Whitney JT10D-4 (later known as PW2037) and Rolls-Royce RB211-535 were chosen.The first flight of the prototype airplane with engines RB211-535 was performed on February 19, 1982. In the end of December, 1982 the airplane certification in the USA was finished, and in mid January, 1983 it was certified in Great Britain. Eastern Airlines received the first airplane in the end of December, 1982. The flight tests of the airplane with PW2037 were started in March, 1984; and the certification was completed in late October, 1984. Originally the airplane 757-200 was certificated with take-off mass 99.8 tons, with gradual further increased up to 115.6 tons.