Eight miles high

I think it’s fair to say that last week was a great example of the interesting dynamics of flight testing. Yes, we had some obstacles to overcome - dealing with remote maintenance activity on ZA001. We also had some firsts - three 787s flying on one day; reaching an altitude of 43,000 feet while maintaining a 6,000 foot cabin altitude; and reaching a speed of Mach 0.9 during flutter testing.

And of course we saw the first flight of ZA004.

You might want to check out the new video of that flight - including scenes from inside the flight deck - at the 787 flight test Web site.


Touchdown at Boeing Field for ZA004.

Our next 787 flight test airplane, ZA003, will fly soon. Its flight has moved into March because we had some work yet to complete and we decided to put some additional flight test equipment in now rather than after the first flight. That way, we’ll make more flights sooner and get the data from the airplane we need.

Bottom line, we’re making good progress and good decisions.

Comments (4)

Feki (Provo, UT):

What a great example of industry, especially pulling through hard times and set backs to enjoy future accolades.

Norman (Long Beach, California, United States):

Congrats to the captains and the new altitude and speed records for the 787.

Keith Warth (Sydney Australia):

She is such a lovely aircraft.

Kris Frederick (Tukwila, Washington):

"Eight miles high" - reminds me first of a song by the Byrds in 1966, of the same title.

It gives the plane (787) a bit of a surreal edge for me - but then, the accomplishments and abilities thus far demonstrated by the 787 are probably a bit surreal to the flying public - almost as if Boeing dared to be first, to go where no commercial airplane manufacturer dared go before - not only in composite construction, but in the way in which the 787 is manufactured.

Congratulations to us (Boeing) on such a world-changing airplane!

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