First production 787 completes maiden flight

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Boeing's newest 787 has completed its maiden flight, taking off from the company's Everett, Washington plant and landing just over one hour later.

The aircraft, designated ZA102, is a temporary member of the 787 flight test fleet and will help demonstrate extended operations (ETOPS), as well as complete function and reliability testing. Earlier test aircraft had unique configurations for other tests required by the certification programme.

Powered by Rolls Royce Trent 1000 engines, ZA102 wears a white fuselage and an All Nippon Airways tail. The aircraft's registration has been changed to N1006F from N6066Z. This is the seventh 787 to fly since the flight test programme began on 15 December 2009, and the ninth 787 produced.

787 N1006F Low Approach from Matt Cawby on Vimeo.

On 18 January Boeing released its latest delivery schedule for the 787, and aims to deliver the first aircraft to launch customer All Nippon Airways in the third quarter.

The new delivery date reflects the effects of an in-flight fire in November of 2010 that halted the test flight campaign. Boeing's revised schedule includes the time necessary to produce, install and test updated software and new electrical power distribution panels in the flight test and production aircraft.

Boeing expects to release additional information about anticipated initial 787 deliveries in its earnings discussion scheduled for 26 January.

The original 787 delivery date was May 2008, and programme delays have subsequently pushed back first delivery by roughly three years.