Boeing’s first and third flight test aircraft, the latter of which is currently slated to represent the company at the 2010 Farnborough air show, are undergoing rework of it horizontal stabilizer following the discovery of a quality issue that threatened to reduce the fatigue life of the structure, Boeing confirms.
ZA001 and ZA003 were scheduled to be in a planned maintenance layup at the moment and the rework is being done concurrently, says Boeing.
ZA002, Boeing’s second 787 flight test aircraft which wears the colors of launch customer All Nippon Airways, is on reserve for the mid-July air show in case ZA003 is not out of rework.
However, Boeing estimates that the ZA003 will complete the rework by Friday, July 9, eight days before the aircraft is set to depart Boeing Field for Farnborough airport in the UK on July 17.
Meanwhile, ZA004 kicked off its flight loads survey today from Victorville Airport in Southern California after nearly a month of being outfitted with fresh instrumentation that will compare and measure the loads on the aircraft’s structure against design expectations.
ZA005 is currently undergoing flutter testing that began on July 2 to evaluate the airframe engine combination of the GEnx-1B engine. Additionally, first flight of the sixth flight test aircraft has slipped into early August, says program sources.