787 nears flight

June 8: As Boeing’s radical 787 ‘Dreamliner’ approaches its delayed first flight, another important step was completed with the ‘intermediate gauntlet phase’ of testing.

Pilots and engineers simulated multiple failure scenarios, using all of the aircraft’s systems as if the aircraft were in flight, including power, avionics and flight controls.

“The team has done an incredible job supporting an exhaustive test regime,” said Scott Fancher, Vice President and general manager of the 787 programme. “We will continue to take a hard look at the results, make adjustments and finish up our testing so we can get to first flight.” The Dreamliner was originally scheduled to make its first flight in August 2007, but re-design and delays have led to the near two-year slippage. It is now expected to fly by the end of June.

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