The first Boeing 787 Dreamliner built in South Carolina completed its first flight on May 23.
Piloted by Tim Berg and Randy Neville, the Boeing 787-8 conducted a five-hour test flight. More than 5,000 Boeing South Carolina employees watched a live broadcast of the aircraft as it took off from Charleston International Airport.
“This is a proud moment for our Boeing South Carolina team and for Boeing,” said Jack Jones, vice president/general manager, Boeing South Carolina. “In April, we gathered on the flight line to watch this airplane roll out of final assembly. Today, we watched as this airplane successfully completed its first production flight – one step closer to delivering our first South Carolina-built 787 Dreamliner to our customer.”
The May 23 production flight-test profile tested the 787’s controls and systems in a series of scenarios designed to verify that the aircraft operates as designed. The tests occurred in all stages of flight and ranged from tests prior to taxiing out, through final landing and taxi in.
During the flight, the crew checked the functionality of onboard systems at high and medium altitudes. They also checked backup and critical safety elements including cabin pressurization, avionics, and navigation and communications systems. In addition, the crew shut down and re-started each engine during flight.
“First flight of this South Carolina-built airplane is a significant achievement and our teammates did a great job working together to make this happen,” said Berg. “The airplane performed exactly as we expected.”
The aircraft will be flown to Fort Worth in Texas to be painted in the Air India livery before returning to Boeing South Carolina for a mid-2012 hand-over to the airline.