Boeing confirmed today that it completed all flight tests required for type certification of the Rolls-Royce-powered 787-8 Dreamliner this past weekend. ZA102, the ninth 787 built by Boeing, performed the final flight on Saturday, August 13. Chief pilot Mike Carriker returned ZA102 to its home base at Paine Field in Everett, Wash., at 1:58 p.m. local time following a 90-minute flight that originated in Billings, Mont. During the flight, the 14-person crew completed simulations of a dispatch with a failed generator and failed fuel-flow indication.
“When ZA102 returned to Paine Field, it brought back with it the hopes and dreams of the many thousands of men and women of Boeing and our global partners who have worked so long for this day,” said Scott Fancher, vice president and general manager of the 787 program. “Their hard work and commitment to this amazing airplane has been a true inspiration. We look forward to making our first delivery to our good friends at ANA in September.”
All told, seven 787s clocked more than 4,800 hours during some 1,700 flights since ZA001 took to the air for the first time on Dec. 15, 2009. Flight testing continues for 787s with GE engines and for Boeing test points not related to certification.
Boeing plans to resume 787 line movement this week after more than a month-long “pause” to replenish certain parts supplies and incorporate engineering changes. The Dreamliner production system continues to face certain “challenges” as the company prepares to increase output from two airplanes to 10 per month by the end of 2013.