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The Boeing 787 Dreamliner departed Bush Intercontinental Airport 7:20 a.m. on Sunday, November 4

Boeing finally sent its 787 Dreamliner on its North American debut Sunday morning after several delays over the years

The Boeing 787 Dreamliner departed Bush Intercontinental Airport 7:20 a.m. on Sunday, November 4. The new plane carried over 200 passengers from Houston to Chicago, touching the ground two and a half hours after taking off. 

Shortly before the flight took place, United Airlines completed its Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certification process for the Boeing 787 Dreamliner.

"I want to thank my co-workers who worked so carefully and professionally to get United certified to operate the Dreamliner," said Jeff Smisek, president and CEO of United Continental Holdings Inc. (the holding company for United Airlines). "Many people from across the company put in a lot of work to help us induct and prepare to operate the 787, and I'm proud to share this important day with all of them."

The 787 Dreamliner was delayed for years before this official debut, mainly due to manufacturing and cost-related issues. Delays have dated back as far as 2008.

?787 Dreamliner business first cabin

The first 787 Dreamliner made its maiden flight in December 2009.

The 787 Dreamliner is an efficient airplane made of lightweight carbon composites, which features a whole new passenger experience with dimmable windows, LED lights, reclining business class seats and even higher humidity. These lighter materials mean airlines can use less fuel.

The Dreamliners have 36 first-class seats, 70 premium-economy seats and 113 economy seats. United said it ordered 50 787s. 

Source: United Hub

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RE: 787
By Solandri on 11/5/2012 9:06:47 PM , Rating: 4
And just to be clear, that wasn't by Airbus' choice either. When the 787 was announced, Airbus offered the A350 as a refresh of the A330 (which does match up with the 787). Same fuselage, different engines and wing.

The airlines all shot it down. They demanded that Airbus come up with something with a redesigned, larger fuselage. So they got the current A350 design which matches up more closely with the 777.

In a way it makes sense. The 777 has been absolutely crushing the A340 in the 300-400 passenger range. 1379 total orders in 17 years vs 377 in 19 years, and about 70/yr the last few years vs about 10/yr. And without the A340, Airbus has a huge gaping hole in its lineup between the A330 and A380. A hole filled by not one, but two Boeing aircraft (777, 747).

So the airlines may have been saying they wanted something to compete with the 787, but what they were really saying was they wanted Airbus to replace the A340.

RE: 787
By Keeir on 11/6/2012 2:25:51 PM , Rating: 2

It has to do with issues of scaling and technology.

The B767 is Aluminum Panels/Aluminum Frames/Aluminum Wing
The A330/B777 Aluminum Panels/Aluminum Frames/Composite Wing
The A350 is Composite Panels/Aluminum Frames/Composite Wing
The B787 is Composite Barrel /Composite Frames/Composite Wing

Assuming similiar levels of engines, etc. The B787 is a lighter technology base than the A350. Selling a A350 in the B787 range would be counterproductive.... The A350 would be an also ran and inferior from the moment it left the factory. Airbus would not sell significant more A350s in the 225-275 market than just taking the last profit from the A330 line. Taking aim at the 777 with the A350 XWB gives the A350 a chance to dominate a market as the market leader in technology and replace a very poor performer in the A340. Which also explains why the Airlines want an "all-new" 777. They believe Boeing can scale the 787 technology base onto a larger market plane and acchieve similiar success. In other words, they believe Boeing can leap-frog the performance of the A350 XWB rather than "match" or come close with a re-engine of the 777.

(Not surprisingly the A350 with the most orders is the A350-900, which takes aim at the 777-200. The least efficient 777)

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