Boeing has completed the power-on sequence for the first 787 Dreamliner, the company announced today. The process began early this month with a series of pre-test continuity checks to verify proper wiring connections. Upon completion of those checks, the Boeing team plugged in an external power cart and slowly began to bring full power into each segment of the system, beginning with the flight deck displays. From that point forward, engineers used the pilot’s controls to direct the addition of new systems to the power grid.
At each step of the testing, power flows into one additional area, where gauges verify that the proper level of electrical power reached the intended area.
“We are very methodical in ensuring the integrity of the airplane’s systems,” said 787 program manager Pat Shanahan. “In completing the power-on sequence, we have verified both that the electrical power distribution system is installed as designed and that it functions as intended.”
Scheduled now to fly by November, the first Boeing 787 leads a group of six prototypes scheduled to participate in flight testing. Final assembly on the third flight-test airplane began in early May, days after prototype number one moved from the final assembly facility to the structural test rig. In all, Boeing plans to engage eight airframes in the certification program, including a static-test airframe (aircraft No. 2) and a fatigue-test airframe (aircraft No. 4) now undergoing systems installation.
Delivery schedules now call for the first production airplane to go to Japan’s All Nippon Airways, some 15 months later than originally planned.