Boeing Opens New 787 Vertical-fin Assembly Line in Salt Lake City

 - June 28, 2011, 9:52 AM

Boeing today celebrated the opening of a new 787 vertical-fin assembly line at its production facility in Salt Lake City. Operated by Boeing Fabrication, the site will construct the composite, vertical-fin assemblies for 787 Dreamliners built at Boeing’s new plant in Charleston, S.C. The company expects to start production in Charleston next month.

Utah governor Gary R. Herbert symbolically pushed a large button to bring electric power to the assembly line at today’s event, attended by elected officials, community and business groups, suppliers, subcontractors and Boeing employees. Boeing designed and built the new line using lean-manufacturing techniques, reducing required floor space and increasing production capacity without the need to add new “brick and mortar” facilities. The 35,000-sq-ft assembly line will help improve the efficiency of the final assembly and delivery process at the 787 facility in South Carolina, according to Boeing.

“Opening this line is a great example of Boeing teammates working together across organizational and geographical boundaries to drive manufacturing excellence,” said Craig Trewet, director of Boeing Salt Lake City. “It was a team effort [among] Boeing South Carolina training and development, our Composite Manufacturing Center, which produces the vertical-fin parts in Washington state, and each and every employee at Salt Lake City.”

Boeing Salt Lake City currently supports fabrication activities across all Boeing Commercial Airplane models. Schedules call for it to deliver its first vertical fin to Boeing South Carolina during this year’s fourth quarter.