ZA001 flies for a second time
I went down to Boeing Field today to catch an AirNav LearJet and ended up catching a 787. While waiting for the learjet on a sunny Seattle afternoon, I got a flight aware alert text message on my phone saying that BOE001 (787 Line No. 1) was due to depart 1400 local time to PAE [perform a touch and go there] and then head back to BFI. I later learned that the flight was originally due to depart at noon and the plan was to go to Grant County International Airport (MWH) in Eastern Washington to do a touch and go. The sunset in Seattle this time of year is at 1625 Pacific standard time. Boeing test flights normally never fly under the cover of darkness and especially so when the plane is still an experimental.
BOE001 left at 1450 local time and departed to the south off of Boeing Field's runway 13R. The rotation point was about 5100' (1554 meters) as they were followed out by by a Boeing Company CT-33 chase plane. After contacting Seattle Departure, they made a left hand turn heading North. I didn't follow the Boeing Telemetry room frequency on 123.325 Mhz very closely, but I did hear them cycle the landing gear, use autopilot and use the de-icing systems. The maximum ground speed reached was 258 knots with a maximum altitude of 15,000 feet (4600 meters), according to flight aware's tracking log.
After and hour and fifty minutes aloft, BOE001 returned to Boeing Field on a visual approach landing at 1640, never performing a touch and go at Paine Field. This was probably because of the low light at the time and not because of a mechanical problem.