Boeing 787 Dreamliner Achieves Initial Airworthiness Milestone
"This is an important step forward," said Scott Fancher, vice president and general manager of the 787 program, Boeing Commercial Airplanes. "We are very pleased with the results we have achieved so far. The airplane has been performing as we expected."
Since the first flight in mid-December, the program has conducted 15 flights, achieving several key accomplishments. Pilots have taken the airplane to an altitude of 30,000 feet and a speed of Mach 0.65. Nearly 60 hours of flying have been completed. Initial stall tests and other dynamic maneuvers have been run, as well as an extensive check-out of the airplane's systems. Six different pilots have been behind the controls of the 787.
In the weeks ahead, the team will continue to expand the flight envelope at which the 787 will operate to reach an altitude of more than 40,000 feet and a speed of Mach 0.85. Subsequent testing will push the airplane beyond expected operational conditions.
"The pilots have told me the results we are seeing in flight match their expectations and the simulations we've run. That's a real tribute to Boeing's expertise and the international team that helped develop and build the airplane," said Fancher.
Flight testing will continue in the months ahead. First delivery is planned for the fourth quarter of 2010.