Boeing's 787 Dreamliner will later today take to the skies for the first time, almost two-and-a-half years after it was originally supposed to get airborne. The Boeing Dreamliner in All Nippon Airways livery. Source: Boeing The carbon composite and titanium aircraft is slated to leave the Seattle tarmac at 18:00 GMT at the end …
I can't help but think that London-SFO in one of those will be a lot more comfortable* than in an A380, especially the immigration/baggage scrum on arrival, with only 250 people to handle.
*This is comfort in relative terms, of course, since 10 hours in economy is not actually comfortable in any aircraft. Ever.
250 people my arse
It'll have 250 seats for about ten minutes, then they'll cram an extra few hundred in for better margins.
On external hardpoints?
I've done a flight home to Washington, DC from Paris on an Air France Airbus -- a 380, iirc -- and those damn' things were positively cavernous -- almost frighteningly so, especially considering my seat was in one of the "inside" blocks of seating, in between the aisles with absolutely no chance to check out the view. I was absolutely surrounded by people, and it felt really uncomfortable and disorienting somehow.
Still, it beat the hell out of my trip to Madrid on a Spanair DC9, which was the most absurdly cramped coach seating I'd ever ridden in. I could've sworn there was less space per person than in the old NASA Gemini capsule. At least the Gemini crewmen could almost fully extend their arms in front of them; good luck in coach aboard a DC9.
Stunts on the maiden flight?
What? They say they'll be stalling, steep turns and all that on the maiden flight? That's madness. Normally a maiden flight they don't even retract the undercarriage, nor go fast enough to need to, nor even go high enough to pressurise, do they? ...or have I spent too long reading history, when people were, um... careful?
Ain't it more likely that was a general statement about the whole flight-test programme, not the maiden flight specifically?
What's more likely here:
A) They're going to try a series of high-risk maneuvers in a brand-spanking new aircraft that hasn't even had its list of gremlins written yet.
B) Some PR flack has taken the testing "to do" list and the maiden flight announcement, put two and two together and come up with five.
Seems a tad brave ...
Do they really do mid-air stalls on a first flight?
"Do they really do mid-air stalls on a first flight?"
Yea, sometimes. The stalls are followed by dramatic footage of the flaming wreckage, still photos of the pilots gathering up their parachutes, and a press release from the company about "unforeseen setbacks in testing" leading to "significant delays in anticipated delivery dates of production models".
Mine's the one with the integrated 'chute.
You've got a picture of a 787-3... Not a 787-8 that's due to fly today (you can tell by the winglets)
I'll go and get my spotters coat... and watch the developing story on FlightBlogger www. flightglobal.com/blogs/flightblogger/ which has the full test breakdown over the next few months...
Not cancelled after all.
Good luck with getting it off the ground.
"Mid-air stalls, dives and steep banks" all sound fairly routine, if you're approaching Heathrow in a Boeing.
"Boeing 787 Dreamliner set for first flight"
"Spruce Goose"... Need I say more? Really?
It if's Boeing ...
I ain't going ...
Not from the reputation of their testing nowadays.
What's in a name?
Don't the people who name designs, ever learn, I mean including 'dream' in the name
was just tempting fate. It has been a nightmare for Boeing so far.
Where are the other two engines?
Looks like they forgot to bolt on the other two engines. A two engined aircraft to cross the Atlantic or Pacific - no thanks.
Engines Turn Or Passengers Swim...
dude, the boeing 777 is twin engine and has been crossing the atlantic for ages, so does the airbus 360
Turbine reliability has been improving for decades from a base level 10 times better than piston engines.
Hence the drop from 4 engines to 3 and now 2.
This was agreed sometime in the 1980 AFAIK, and implemented in 1990s.
Come on Reg!
Boeing absolutely does not practice stalls, dives, and other such nonsense on the first flight. Yes, it will all be part of the flight test program on the way to certification. However, it is not for today!
Today's highlight will be stowing the landing gear & retracting the flaps. Seriously.
The Reg can do better reporting than this.
"The airplane will use 20 percent less fuel for comparable missions than today's similarly sized airplane."
Sounds to me like Boeing have been hanging around USAF and NASA for too long. Commercial aircraft are used for 'Flights' or 'Services', but surely not 'Missions'.
BTW, it is an aeroplane, not an airplane; and the comparison is with a range of other systems, so the last word in the sentence should be plural, not singular (I suggest the word 'aircraft' might be appropriate). Also, as the damn thing is meant to fly today, they should have referred to 'previous' rather than 'today's'. Also... Oh stuff it, trying to teach 'Merkins to speak English is just a waste of time and effort.
So its an airplane alright...
We say 'airplane', you say 'aeroplane'...
...you say 'aluminium', we say 'aluminum';
Airplane, aeroplane, aluminum, aluminium...
...d'ahh, lighten up, you guys. We're all speaking English here...sorta kinda.
Any Australians care to chime in? Or Canadians? (they spell like you, they sound like us)
Pint of lager icon, because... what the hell, it's getting to be Saturday night here, and I've been shoveling snow most of the afternoon.
For certain values of "maiden" or "first"
I've seen this flying around here* for months now. Then again, perhaps it was just taxiing very, very fast.
Yep, took off at 10:28 AM local time (I'm in Seattle). It flew only 3 hours as bad weather in the cascades prevented its flying eastward as originally planned. (It instead went back and forth between Port Angeles and Whidbey island, staying mostly over the strait of Juan de Fuca.)
But do you actually want to fly in one?
Anyone who watched the news footage will have seen how much the wing bends, did everything but flap, and that in an unloaded aircraft. We know that the delay in the prototype flight was because the wing had to be stiffened at the root. OK the deflection of a plastic wing is going to be more than a metal wing, but so much? It looks unstable.
Won't get me in one, I'd rather fly by pig.
Cattle class...uh, that is, Coach class seating?
I just followed the link to the Boeing site, and I must say I really dig that Kubrick space-station look in the interior. About goddamn' time they dealt with the overhead bin issue, too.
Still, I've also noticed the emphasis on the improved first-class seating layout in the press-kit fotos. I think there's one image in there that offers a glimpse of what cattle-class seating will be like. From what I can make out, it doesn't look half bad. Of course, it doesn't look half-good, either, but it still looks like it beats the shit/e out of coach-class seating on a Super 80, or a 737 -- or the DC9 (or, as I like to call it, the Flying Slave Ship).