787 Dreamliner First Flight Delayed by Boeing
Boeing has delayed the first flight of its 787 Dreamliner once more, in order to reinforce part of the side-of-body section of the plane.
“First flight and first delivery will be rescheduled following the final determination of the required modification and testing plan,” Boeing said in a statement. “It will be several weeks before the new schedule is available.”
This marks one of several obstacles Boeing has faced in developing the Dreamliner jet, including previous delays, production problems, and a strike by the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers.
Originally, the Dreamliner first flight was to have taken place before the end of 2008, and was then postponed to the second quarter of 2009. According to Scott Carson, president of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, the structural reinforcements needed by the 787 Dreamliner, which comprises lightweight composite material rather than aluminum, are not a major issue.
“Structural modifications like these are not uncommon in the development of new airplanes, and this is not an issue related to our choice of materials or the assembly and installation work of our team,” Scott Carson, the president of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, said in a statement.
The 787 Dreamliner will purportedly be 20 percent more fuel efficient than other long-duration flying planes. Boeing has received around 900 orders for the Dreamliner jet since its first announcement in 2004.
News of the Boing 787 first flight delay was met with disappointment, with even Washington governor Chris Gregoire responding in a press release.
Boeing's stock dropped shortly after the delay was announced.
Boeing is posting a particularly steep loss, with the aerospace giant currently down 8.8 percent. At its low for the session, Boeing was at a nearly one-month intraday low.
The loss by Boeing comes after the company announced that the first flight of its 787 Dreamliner would be postponed due to a need to reinforce part of the aircraft.