Boeing 787 ready to fly after completing taxi tests–perhaps tomorrow

 - December 14, 2009, 6:49 AM

Boeing completed high-speed taxi tests on the first 787 Dreamliner on Saturday, marking the last in a series of functional tests planned in preparation for first flight. Boeing’s “window” for flying the airplane opens tomorrow at 10 a.m., when, depending on the weather, the 787 could fly for the first time, from Paine Field in Everett, Wash.

“Our pilots told me the airplane performed beautifully,” said Mike Delaney, vice president and chief project engineer for the 787. “We're going through and analyzing the data to ensure we're ready for first flight. From evaluations we've done so far, everything looks good.”

During the taxi testing, the airplane reached a top speed of about 130 knots, and the pilots lifted the nose gear from the pavement.