Boeing 787 vice-president and general manager Mike Bair says that weight reduction efforts for the twinjet are consuming "several hundreds of millions of dollars" in additional research and development costs, but he adds: "We are still inside the commitments we made to the board when we launched the programme."

Parts are being redesigned or "optimised" to reduce weight, and in some cases more titanium is being used in place of aluminium. "But we're confident we will meet all our targets," says Bair, adding that a revised, lighter-weight seat track design is one example of the redesigns now being implemented. These and other features will be incorporated into the first six flight test aircraft during post-test refurbishment, but will be standard from the first aircraft to be delivered direct to the customer.

Source: Flight International