Wednesday, August 6, 2008

787 Brakes

Currently the only issue that stands between the 787 and it flying is the brake monitoring software (the labor issues notwithstanding).

Crane Co, GE, Smith and Boeing haven't really given a status update on this issue as of yet but it certainly doesn't mean that there hasn't been progress or not. Pat Shanahan has said that this issue is helping to eat up some of the schedule margin that the program has which cannot be a good thing. How much margin is left is unclear but in Jon Ostrower's blog, Boeing plans to have all hardware certified for safety of flight and ready to go for first flight by the end of the third week of August at the latest.

Now with the brake monitoring system.

The hardware is fine and the software has been written. Crane has to verify the software works and along with that Crane also has to collect all the documentation (and perhaps even prepare documentation) related to the brake monitoring software for Safety of Flight certification, in other words the system can't be used until the FAA know that it's safe even for flight testing.

According to Pat Shanahan (quoted in Jon's blog), everything except for the brakes will safety of flight certified by the end of the third week of August at the latest. When that will take place is a matter of speculation but my guess is around late August to mid September. It will probably go inside the 767 hanger for some final assembly activities and perhaps installation of some flight test equipment and then outside for ground testing.

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