Boeing has announced a significant new delay for the first flight date of the 787 programme.
The delay has been caused by travelled work problems and completion of flight control software which means the aircraft's first flight will be delayed to mid-November/mid-December.
The delay has been Boeing’s original plan called for the first 787 to be ready by late-August to launch a nine-month airworthiness certification process ending with first delivery to All Nippon Airways in May 2008.
Earlier in the third quarter, Boeing acknowledged that the end of the window for first flight might slip from late September to early October, requiring the company to complete airworthiness certification in only seven months to remain on schedule for first delivery.
The first assembled 787 was rolled out on 8 July with great fanfare, but Boeing’s celebratory mood was to prove premature. The aircraft was assembled with thousands of temporary fasteners as Boeing’s main suppliers reported a major shortage of aviation-quality rivets for the main fuselage and wing structures.
Also in July, Boeing was still working to complete the aircraft’s software load and had not yet installed the avionics and wiring.
First delivery is still officially scheduled for mid-May.