Two days after the FAA cleared Boeing to fly 787 test missions over unpopulated areas, the company took prototype ZA005 on an “uneventful” flight over Washington state on Saturday. During the two-hour, 19-minute flight, 13 Boeing pilots and flight-test personnel used special equipment to observe and record details of the performance of the main and APU batteries during normal flight conditions.
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The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration is evaluating a request from Boeing to fly a 787 to test potential fixes to allow the airplane to re-enter service, the agency confirmed on Tuesday. The FAA gave no word on when it might respond to Boeing, however, nor would it confirm reports that the airplane could fly as early as this week.
Boeing has begun assembling 737NGs at a rate of 38 airplanes per month, the company announced Tuesday. Over the past two years, monthly production of the 737 has risen more than 20 percent, from 31.5 to 38 airplanes. Plans call for the rate to increase again to 42 airplanes a month next year.
Data from the flight recorder retrieved from the Japan Air Lines Boeing 787 that caught fire on January 7 while parked at Boston Logan International Airport shows that the airplane’s APU battery did not charge beyond its design limit of 32 volts, according to the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board.
Boeing has rolled out the first 777 built at the program’s increased production rate of 8.3 per month, or 100 airplanes per year, the company announced Thursday. Plans call for delivery of the airplane—a 777 Freighter—to Korean Air in February.
With 12 jet deliveries to completion centers and another 12 outfitted bizliners handed over to clients in 2012, Boeing Business Jets is celebrating what it calls “a monumental year.” Company president Steve Taylor described last year as “terrific,” noting that the company met its goal of “12 [green] and 12 [completed deliveries] in 2012.” In addition, with the delivery of eight new 747-8s for completion, 2012 was a record year for Boeing Business Jets in terms of delivery value, totaling more than $3 billion last year.
Associated Air Center, with two ACJ330 and Boeing 747-8 cabin completion projects currently under way, is positioning itself for more of the same large-cabin bizliner work in a bid to fill its Love Field, Dallas hangars this year and beyond.
Associated has invested “several million dollars” in facility improvements, including hangar expansions, tooling and training for large-cabin bizliners in production, and to support Boeing 777X and Boeing 787 structural requirements for new aircraft entering the executive completion market in the coming years.
L-3 Platform Integration has received a second Boeing 747-8 for cabin outfitting at its Waco, Texas completion center. The company claims to be the first center to have two 747-8s in simultaneous completion, and with more than half a million square feet of hangar space it can accommodate multiple twin-aisle bizliner completion and refurbishment projects. Outfitting of the cabins on the two airplanes includes cabin management and in-flight entertainment systems, LED lighting throughout and a customized noise-dampening package.
Leaders from the Society of Professional Engineers in Aerospace (SPEEA) are meeting with engineers and technicians working at various “choke points” within Boeing Commercial Airplanes in the Seattle area and Portland, Oregon, in preparation for a strike as early as February.
Sales of U.S. military aircraft will fall by 2.4 percent this year to $58.2 billion, the lowest level since 2006, according to a preliminary estimate of the Aerospace Industries Association (AIA). Sales are expected to decline by another 10 percent in next year as budget cuts force the Pentagon to reduce procurement spending, the association said in its year-end review and forecast, released earlier this month.