Friday, October 5, 2012

787 Production Update and 1st 787 Delivery from Charleston

Boeing is continuing to make steady progress in pushing out new and re-worked 787 during this past week.

In the EMC, ZA287 (LN 52, N20903) for United went inside the EMC hangar from a spot on the EMC ramp to continue the change incorporation process. With the reshuffling that went on inside th hangar, ZA286 (LN 50, N20902), also for United, went to the paint hangar and will start the pre-flight program at Everett. 

Boeing has completed the first 787 to go through the surge line though I'm still trying to get a handle on the location.  Currently I believe that ZA538 (LN 80, CC-BBC), for LAN, is in 40-26 position 4 for final assembly activities and aqueous wash but should be going to paint very soon.  The other 787 in paint is ZA290 (LN 77, N20906), again another United Dreamliner but that should be coming out of paint very soon thus making way for ZA538. I don't have information on where ZA271 (LN 78, SP-LRB) for LOT Polish Airlines and ZA432 (LN 79, B-2730) for Hainan Airlines currently after the line move in 40-24.  Boeing has loaded ZA183 (LN 84, J8829J) for Japan Airlines into position 1 on 40-24 surge line to start final assembly.

At Charleston, ZA240 (LN 65, VT-ANL) finally saw daylight and was rolled out of the final assembly building last Sunday (Sept. 30) to start pre-flight in advance of its eventual delivery to Air India.  Brendan Kearney of the Post and Courier also reported that ZA238 (LN 54, VT-ANJ) also for Air India and the next Charleston built 787 to be delivered should be returning from Ft. Worth where it was being painted by this weekend. With the line move, Boeing has 4 787 in assembly at the Charleston plant with another 3 on the flightline going through pre-flight or pre-delivery.  It is anticipated that Air India should take delivery of another Charleston built 787 late this month but that is all dependent on the internal situation at Air India and the issues it confronts in dealing with the Government of India.

Speaking of Air India, again, Boeing did make delivery to Air India of ZA237 (LN 46, VT-ANI) which is the first 787 built at Charleston.  While the milestone was notable so was the fact that this was a very low key delivery ceremony possibly arising out of the tortured path and bad feelings in arriving at this moment.  No big speeches by politicians or dignitaries at this delivery ceremony.  We'll see how future delivereis to Air India goes but rumor has it that Air India needed bridge financing for this airplane so I have to wonder how smooth future deliveries to this airline will be. Here's Boeing's Press Release on today's delivery:

Boeing Delivers First South Carolina-built 787 Dreamliner

Historic delivery to Air India begins a new chapter of Boeing airplane production in region

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C., Oct. 5, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Boeing (NYSE: BA) today marked a historic milestone with delivery of the first 787 Dreamliner built at its North Charleston, S.C., facility to Air India.   
The delivery continues the momentum of the 787 Dreamliner's entry into revenue service by customers globally and marks the beginning of a new era of commercial airplane production in South Carolina.

"Within just three years of breaking ground, we have flown and delivered our first airplane built at Boeing South Carolina," said Jack Jones, vice president and general manager, Boeing South Carolina. "This is a tribute to the remarkable Boeing South Carolina team and the support we have received from our airline customers, our supplier partners and the Boeing enterprise, as well as the relationship we have with the State of South Carolina."

Work on the Boeing South Carolina Final Assembly and Delivery Center began in November 2009. Production of the first South Carolina-built 787 began in mid-2011 and the completed airplane rolled out of the factory in April.

Boeing South Carolina fabricates, integrates and assembles the midbody and aftbody fuselage sections for all 787 Dreamliners. Completed sections are joined in South Carolina Final Assembly, or transported via the Dreamlifter to 787 Final Assembly in Everett, Wash.

"We're delighted to be the first airline in the world to take delivery of a Dreamliner from this beautiful factory and look forward to taking many more," said Air India Board Member K.M. Unni. "The 787 is an airplane with unmatched efficiency and technology, which will help in our airline's turnaround plan."

Dinesh Keskar, senior vice president of Asia Pacific and India Sales, Boeing Commercial Airplanes, praised Boeing's long, successful partnership with Air India, including delivery in September of its first two of 27 Dreamliners. "With two 787s successfully introduced to Air India's fleet, passengers are enjoying breakthrough features such as larger windows, lower cabin altitude and unprecedented flying experience," said Keskar.

Today's delivery marks the 28th 787 Dreamliner delivered to date. Boeing South Carolina will increase final assembly production to three 787s per month by the end of 2013.
The Boeing 787 Dreamliner is the first commercial jetliner made primarily of advanced composite materials. It offers exceptional passenger comfort features, including cleaner air, a lower cabin altitude, higher humidity, bigger windows that dim electronically and more overhead storage space. Airlines appreciate its fuel efficiency, which is 20 percent better than other airplanes in its class and results in 20 percent lower carbon emissions.


Maciek Goralski said...

WOW! I am amazed by so many things happening at once - VT-ANI, LN65, surge line move - looks like Boeing is really out of the woods. So what is going on with LOT's second airplane? First you reported, that it swapped positions with one on spot 3, but why did it happen? It's pretty interesting why instead of pushing it out, Boeing decided to swap places.
Thanks for amazing work you did!

Andrew Boydston said...

My two cents on Lot, formerly position 4 now 3. The Parking Lot is full and the Valet went home. So 4 went to 3 and 3 went 4 while 2 is not ready for a move forward. Now the new 3 position Lot is just parked with pre-flight checks going on and 4 is being prep in proper matriculation for roll out. Both positions 3 and 4 will roll out simultaneously, where one will go test flight station and the other will go to paint, and then trade roles. positions 1 and 2 will bump forward where production will increase speed. Boeing is trying to keep the floor moving at a higher rate while the parking lot is full. That missing valet parking guy will be busy when he comes back.

graeme77 said...

I seem to recall only one #4 position at Everett - and that is in 40-26. In 40-24 they have pos 1-3 and pos 4 is to be shared by both lines - that of 40-24 and 40-26. Something doesn't quite seem to fit...

Uresh said...

I'm trying to find out where these airplanes are so for now I have them both at position 4 in 40-26.

Maciek Goralski said...

Andrew, so you suggest, that they are planning to push all three of them at once due to lack of space? But it should be much better now since they delivered at least twice as much jets as they produced during last two months? Or are these special positions allowing certain tasks to be done and it can't be done on the runway? I am trying to understand the methodology too ;-) Thanks for reply :D