How crashworthy is a Boeing 787

Boeing is not in the business of enforcing a crash on any of its aircraft but with the Boeing 787 soon to fly (mid November/mid-December) it needs to undergo a series of tests to see how the airframe performs in a crash landing compared to aluminium airframes.
Randy’s Journal, a blog written by Randy Tinseth is vice president, marketing for Boeing Commercial Airplanes in Seattle, has an interesting post entitled “Testing, testing” about how the 787 has been subjected to a suspended steel plate being rammed into the fuselage section.

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3 Responses to How crashworthy is a Boeing 787

  1. Aurora 19 September, 2007 at 4:05 pm #

    How “crashworthy” is any aircraft?

  2. Simon Finn 25 September, 2007 at 12:19 pm #

    The 787 is manufactured from newly developed materials, generically referred to as composites. This term means different things to different people/organisations based on their individual experiences in the field. Composites come in many different forms and possess many different properties depending on the exact material and construction technique used to produce them. US FAA has introduced airworthiness tests designed to examine the properties of the 787 fuselage construction in the event of a crash. These tests check the structural integrity of the fuselage and the resistance to fire damage among other properties. While I am not informed of the details of these tests, it seems unlikely that the tolerances allowed for “conventional metal” airliners would be relaxed in any way for the 787 – otherwise the travelling public and /or other industry competitors would rightly question the safety and/or airworthiness of the aircraft as well as the FAA’s motivation for relaxing such tests. Perhaps it’s naivity on my part but, this seems an unlikely set of developments to me.

    Comments as to the unsuitability of composites for the 787 fuselage construction are not likely to be valid unless they originate from parties with detailed knowledge of the specific materials being used on the new aircraft, rather than experience gained working with other composite materials that may possess quite different properties. Those speaking without such knowledge aren’t necessarily wrong, but such testimony doesn’t carry the same wait as it would had it come from a source with direct experience of the 787′s composite materials.

  3. Andreas Böhmeke 11 October, 2007 at 3:24 pm #

    Andreas Böhmeke Aerospace Engineer
    “The aims are not only to impart knowledge and competencies, but to influence people’s attitudes in such a way that they want to change things and make a difference. Through experiential training new perceptions and insights are provoked.” For more than 20 years Andreas Böhmeke has been successful as a service provider, trainer and human being.
    He is a consultant to top companies in Germany and a multitude of companies and institutional
    clients from all fields. He distinguishes himself through his in-depth professional competence and inexhaustible creativity, constantly considering tasks and questions from new angles. In so doing, he develops exceptional, at times spectacular, programmes such as “Begging, scrounging, fixing deals”, “Learning from Olympic winners” or “The somewhat different Christmas party”. With his choice of training locations too, he sets new yardsticks, whether in a hay hotel, on a bus, on a sailing ship or in an underground harbour. Again and again he weaves his social commitment into events, building bridges between entrepreneurial ethics and responsibility for the community.
    Andreas Böhmeke not only makes things possible which others have already frequently given up as impossible. Until today no one has stopped him from demonstrating and impressively proving the successful implementation of his ideas and concepts. With his activities and customer events, he attracts great interest in the press, radio and TV.

    North German economic affairs council, aerospace spokesman
    Head of the INP Institute, aerospace unit
    Consultant for Lufthansa Technical Training

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