Boeing's 787 programme has completed the first one-third of test and certification requirements for the US FAA in advance of the flight-test phase.
The airframer's chief executive, Jim McNerney, confirmed last week that about 35% of the 787's requirements to obtain airworthiness certification are complete. "Seventy per cent of the certification doesn't have to come from the flight-test programme," said McNerney, addressing Boeing's full-year financial results. "It can come from things we are doing today and we've got about half of that done. We're feeling pretty good about it."
But Boeing still has a heavy workload when the flight test phase begins in June, if it remains on the latest schedule. Boeing plans to complete about 3,100h of flight tests and 3,700h of ground tests to complete certification.
The flight-test programme must not only certificate two new engines, but also qualify the aircraft to perform extended-range, twin-engine operations. The 787 also features new advances in materials, with a mostly composite airframe, and in systems. Boeing plans to build six aircraft for the flight-test phase and to obtain certification in early 2009.
Everything about the Dreamliner at flightglobal.com/787