Browsing Tag: Dreamliner

ANA's Boeing 787 Dreamliner waiting for its first flight

ANA's Boeing 787 Dreamliner waiting for its first flight. Image from Boeing Media

The Boeing 787 Dreamliner has not had very good luck.

It is Boeing’s newest jet made to be more economical and replace the aging Boeing 757 and 767’s.

The new aircraft was supposed to enter service in May 2008, but has hit a number of hurdles causing delay after delay. The aircraft had its official roll out on 07/08/07  (get it 7-8-7…cleaver), but it was just a pretty looking shell with almost no functionality (duct tape anyone?).

Delays have ranged from software issues, a strike, fasteners,  contractors,  supply chain and  in-correct installations.

Everyone following the drama were hoping the  Dreamliner’s would finally have its first flight on June 23, 2009 but it wasn’t meant to be. Boeing is now announcing that the newest delay,  “stems from 18 points where the center wing box (11) meets the wingbox (12) on each side of the aircraft. The fix, once identified, will be installed on location. ”

A new airliner being developed and taking its first flight is a very exciting experience for anyone that follows the airline industry. It has been a long time since the Boeing 777 took its first flight (wow 1994) and I feel a personal connection to this project, since I live less than 15 miles from where the plane will take its first flight and I know people who have been working on the Dreamliner.

At this point, Boeing does not know when the first flight will happen, but check out FlightBlogger Jon Ostrower, who has minute by minute coverage of the events unfolding.

Boeing 787 airplane ZA001 outside the final assembly hall in Everett, WA

Boeing 787 airplane ZA001 outside the final assembly hall in Everett, WA

If you have been following the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, you have probably been pretty frustrated with the delays. I always love the day when a new airliner is able to come out of the hanger, taxi out, and fly. Boeing says the Dreamliner is on target (well the newest target) to start deliveries in the first quarter of 2010. This sounds of good news, but deliveries were supposed to start in May 2008.

They have had delays from parts, production “glitches” and of course that 2-month strike. Then add to all of that the global economic downturn and people flying less, creating a smaller demand for new aircraft like the 787. Although the demand might be smaller, Boeing still has 878 orders from 57 different customers.

Source: KOMO Image: andyconniecox