"Power on" begins

Yesterday, we got word that we’ve taken the first steps towards providing power to the first 787 Dreamliner in the Everett factory.

“Power On” is a milestone accomplished on all new airplanes. But this one is especially important because the 787 is a more-electric airplane, replacing the pneumatic, or bleed air, system with electronics.


Airplane 1, in the factory last month, getting ready to begin “Power On.”

There is a complex series of tasks and tests needed to bring power to Airplane #1 - as we begin to exercise the use of the electrical systems. Keep in mind this is a process and not a one-day event.

At each step of the process, power is allowed to flow into an additional area - and gauges are used to verify that the right level of electrical power reached the intended area.

When it’s completed, the Power On sequence will mark a major milestone on the path to first flight later this year. It’s really significant because it ensures the integrity of the airplane’s systems by verifying both that the electrical power distribution system is installed as designed, and that it functions as intended.

We’re confident that we’ll reach this point by the end of the month. And that will allow the airplane to move into ground-testing, a very familiar area for Boeing and one that we can clearly outline in terms of tasks and schedule.

When Power On is complete, we’ll have some interesting content to share with you, including insight into the actual tests, and interviews and commentary from experts and executives on the program.

Comments (12)

Norman (Long Beach, California, United States):

The 787 looks sharp and ready to power on.

It's been a long road, almost a year since roll out,
but the preparation for the first flight is underway. The next couple of weeks and months are going to be exciting.

James (Honolulu, Hawaii):

Can it be said we can see light at the end of the tunnel--and it's not an oncoming train?

Paulo M (Johannesburg, RSA):

This is great. Being at this point means many important milestones have been passed so far as the structure is concerned. Something to follow in the flight test journal!

Ashley Palmer (USA):

It's good to see power-on come. There have been a lot of people work diligently under a lot of stress to get there. (I know - I was one of them). Good going 787 team!

Chris C (South Africa):

Congratulations! This is stupendous news. Can't wait until the super-efficient 787 is fully "powered-up"! Good, solid, steady progress...well done!

G (France):

When Power On is complete, we’ll have some interesting content to share with you, including insight into the actual tests, and interviews and commentary from experts and executives on the program.

We also hope the FTB (Flight Test Blog) will take off soon.

Tim (Baltimore Maryland):

It's good to see that forward progress on the 787 is being seen in tangible evidence by the fact that Boeing has reached the " POWER ON " milestone.

I was watching one of the podcast for the 787 and was wondering ? in one of the videos, were they show the inside of the 787 were a woman touches the tinting shade for the window, and wondered ? how come they didn't put a button for the tinting in the seat armrest ? unless they already did, because I don't think the passenger would be too comfortable who is sitting in a seat next to the aisle and reaching over to the window to tint it.

Charlie (Everett):

I sure hope this is not more of the previously empty pr news out of that program. It is time for that program to start producing. Time to walk the talk!

Hernan Saldana (Lima, Peru):

I am very glad to hear that!!

Randy, is Boeing going to open the Flight Test Journal as it did on the Worldliner? That would be excellent for Dreamliners' followers so we can follow the whole process step by step.

Hugh (Australia):

Thanks for the updates! Would love hear more and to see details on power on process. Like order of items, process to go through on each item etc. I am sure the electronic systems on this aircraft would be a great viewing.

Mark Delanay (MSY):

I'm not sure what the hoo hah is all about.

I thought a milestone was when something has been achieved and completed.

To "reach" power-on, to me, is far less impressive than "completing" power-on successfully.

Ergo, the champagne remains on ice in the Delanay household !

Get the thing flying...the wait is killing us !

Mike Fulbright (Waco, Texas US):

The hoo hah ?
Let's take a step back. Remember, almost everything about the manufacture of this bird is different. We all remember the disappointment of getting just a "shell" on 7/08/07. Reaching power-on testing means that the "stuffing" has made it to the table and has been installed. Indeed, a milestone. But I do agree that we'll all breathe a sigh of relief when we hear that testing is complete and much risk is retired.

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