After a two month hiatus, I wanted to provide an update on where things stood with the 787 program. Early October gave us a six month delay announcement from Boeing. The timeframes below reflect new program expectations (as Boeing says, there is always risk involved in any projection of expectations)
Dreamliner One - ZA001
ZA001 was lowered back on to its landing gear and moved to position three in Building 40-26 just prior to the October 10th press conference call. This was the first step to make way for delivery of new structural components.
Brackets are being installed in the fuselage and some rack shelves for avionics and flight test equipment is now in the cargo bay. Installation of flight test sensors is underway in the wings as well as wiring on the forward side of the wing spars.
Flight deck installation has begun as of last week. A photograph taken in early November and shared with Flightblogger, shows the progress in the concluding structural and early wiring phase. Boeing Chairman and CEO Jim McNerney visited the factory floor to check in on progress on the factory floor, as well as offer his personal thanks and appreciation for the hard work of the 787 team.
Internal schedules point to a production power on in late January, though limited power on testing has begun to test circuit breakers and other electronics in the wings. Though unconfirmed by official sources, Dreamliner One is tentatively scheduled to be flight ready by late February. Word from the factory floor confirms this time frame is on target with expectations.
UPDATE: See Explaining 787 Flight Readiness
787 Cabin Mockup In Dubai
According to an interview with ATWOnline, BCA President Scott Carson has said that:
Boeing is pleased with the progress on the 787's new production and first flight schedule and is bullish that timelines will be met.
...the center fuselage section and sections immediately fore and aft are complete and ready for insulation blankets. He conceded that there are "a few more fasteners" to be replaced but said, "they are in easy-to-access areas of the aircraft."
He also told [ATWOnline] that the electronics bay is being assembled and Honeywell is on track with the software. Boeing expects the 787 to fly at the end of March.
Static Airframe - ZY997
The vertical fin and rudder were attached to ZY997 in late October. As of print date, it is still at position one. Doors No. 3 and 4 have not yet been attached. According to schedules in Everett, the fatigue airframe should move to position two mid-November. At position two, the static airframe will receive its landing gear. This will be the first time since just before the roll out the body join station has been open for a new airframe. It is expected to move out of 40-26 for 40-23 on or before an evening in early December to begin static testing.
Fatigue Airframe - ZY998
The wings arrived in Everett from Nagoya in late October and delivery of nose Section 41 happened today, November 14. (Photo 1, Photo 2, Photo 3, Photo 4, Photo 5) Delivery of section 47/48 should take place later this week.
The aircraft has had its passenger doors and cargo doors installed as well. This will be the first airframe to ship with doors pre-installed. The center fuselage is currently in a "shake down" to prepare it for shipment to Everett. It is expected to leave Charleston for Everett just before Thanksgiving. Mechanics are cleaning and removing all temporarily installed brackets and fittings and are boxing them up for shipment separately.
Installed door on ZY998
The nose section should be loaded into the final body join rig after ZY997 moves to position two, to be joined shortly there after by the delivery of the center fuselage from Charleston. Following the loading of all the fuselage sections, the wings will be moved into final body join. A process that took roughly two weeks to complete for Dreamliner One.
Fatigue testing of the horizontal stabilizer will take place in Italy in early January 2008.
Dreamliner Two - ZA002
The center fuselage is in the third assembly position in Charleston in what's known as "Cell 30." The assembled sections are currently performing travel work and installing systems (air conditioning packs), flight test sensors and insulation. The cargo door has been installed on the center fuselage as well. According to those who have seen section 41 in Wichita, the nose section is extensively wired and the flight deck has its rudder pedals installed. Final assembly is set to tentatively begin in Everett just before Christmas.
Dreamliner Three - ZA003
Sections 43, 44, 45/11 and 46 arrived in Charleston from Italy and Japan in mid-September. To date, work is continuing on the body join. Sections for Dreamliner Three should be making the trip to Everett around early January.
Dreamliner Four - ZA004
Center fuselage sections for Dreamliner Four arrived in late September. ZA004, the second aircraft destined for Northwest Airlines is also in first assembly position in Charleston. Work has just begun on the joining of all the sections. The last section to be installed, section 44, should be installed later this month.
Dreamliner Five - ZA005
Two LCFs are expected to carry out the delivery of ZA005 parts to Charleston in conjunction with delivery of the center fuselage for ZY998 to Everett.