12:10 PM: Comment from ANA:
“We are disappointed that the first flight of the787 will be postponed, and urge Boeing to specify the schedule for theprogramme as a whole as quickly as possible.”
10:46 AM: Shanahan and Fancher confirm that the problem stems from 18 points where the center wing box (11) meets the wingbox (12) on each side of the aircraft. The fix, once identified, will be installed on location. ZA001 and ZA002 will be modified directly on the flight line. Boeing has not determined a final fix or the material it will use to fix the join. Fancher says the company is leaning towards titanium or aluminum and the fabriction division is ready to start manufacturing parts as soon as a final fix is identified.
10:01 AM: On the conference call now.
10:00 AM: Early indications from sources signal that the problem was first discovered during static testing in April on ZY997.The problem stems from a design fault in the wing-to-body join area between Section 11 (center wing box) and Section 12 (wing box).
9:40 AM: Boeing postpones 787 first flight citing modifications to the side-of-body section of the aircraft.
EVERETT, Wash., June 23 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — Boeing (NYSE: BA)today announced that first flight of the 787 Dreamliner will bepostponed due to a need to reinforce an area within the side-of-bodysection of the aircraft.
The need was identified during the recent regularly scheduledtests on the full-scale static test airplane. Preliminary analysisindicated that flight test could proceed this month as planned.However, after further testing and consideration of possible modifiedflight test plans, the decision was made late last week that firstflight should instead be postponed until productive flight testingcould occur.
Boeing says a new schedule will be available within several weeks once a modification is identified. Sources tell FlightBlogger that 787 customers were notified earlier today of the new delay. Key questions for the program will surround the timing on the flight test program, delivery schedule and further weight gain on the aircraft.
Boeing will hold a teleconference at 10:00 AM ET with Scott Carson, Pat Shanahan and Scott Fancher. Follow this page for coverage throughout the day.