Monday, March 1, 2010

787 exceeds 200 flight hours; 18th 787 starts final assembly

As Boeing continues to pile on 787 flight hours, it has also started final assembly of the 18th 787 destined for ANA.

Dreamliner 1 continues to rack up the most flight hours and mos flights with 39 flights that has accumulated almost 138 flight hours through March1, 2010. The 787 test fleet has accumulated almost 210 flight hours.

Boeing also started assembly of Dreamliner 18 after line move yesterday. Look for Boeing to start assembly on LN 19 and LN 20 (I don't have the ZA numbers yet). The later aircraft is an important milestone as it is a new block point that incorporates weight saving measures in an effort to lower the weight of the airplane. The 787-8 is still overweight but Boeing still hopes to find further areas where they can take out weight as the flight testing progress.

Because of the addition of ZA004 to the test program, Boeing will have valuable data to finalize the design of the 787-9 which is the stretched version of the 787-8. The -9's wing will be the same as that of the 787-8 but Boeing is hoping that test flight information from ZA004 flight tests will yield important information when designing the 787-9. Flightblogger has a blog post up tonight describing the 787-9 progress to date. In the article he says that the first 787-9 will be designated ZB001 but will be LN 139.

Flightblogger: Driving Forward on the 787-9 design

Guy Norris also put up an update on the 787 flight testing as well as the 747-8 flight testing. Guy sasy that ZA001 has flown 11 flutter tests (now 12) while ZA002 continues with stability and control flight testing. ZA003 should also start the run up to gauntlet testing next week.

Guy Norris : 787 and 747 test update

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