Monday, August 17, 2009

747-8 is alive with power and 787 update

Boeing's first 747-8F came alive with power on on last Friday morning in Everett. The new est member of the 747 family will also be the longest airplane in the world at over 250ft (beating the A340-600 by over a yard - take that Airbus!). The aircraft still has to run through a host of check out and assembly activities before being pulled outside to the Boeing flightline. There a whole host of information put out including Randy Tinseth's blog (Randy's Journal). So far it's looking like the 747-8F is having a smoother assembly and testing flow compared to its smaller cousin the 787. Boeing was expected to conduct taxi tests on ZA002 but had postponed it to an unspecified issue. The flight test team will probably try again tomorrow or Wednesday.

Big Time (Randy's Journal)
Guy Norris' 747 power on post
Guy's 747 follow up
Flightblogger RC501 Power On

Power on for this airplane is a big deal as Boeing can now start to retire technical risks associated with the design.


Now onto the 787. As mentioned earlier, Boeing had postponed the taxi test for ZA002 with no explanation given. I suspect that there was some issue that is expected to be resolved as the flight test team will have another crack at it tomorrow according to Guy Norris.

Guy Norris: August 14 787 Update
Guy Norris: Taxi test postponed
Flightblogger: Brakes put on taxi test

On the heals of Flightblogger's story about the stop work order on sections 44/46 at Alenia, Randy Tinseth also posted a fairly detailed explanation of the issues and Boeing's response to it.


In his blog entry, Randy Tinseth reassures that the issue is not going to cost the 787 in terms of financial implications or schedule and as I reported earlier, there won't be any weight or aerodynamic penalties either. He also goes to say that the issue has not cropped up on the 6 test flight aircraft that have already been assembled and would not have caused a delay in first flight.

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