Boeing has flown a flight-test 787-9 to Auckland, home of 787-9 launch customer Air New Zealand
The flight marks the 787-9’s international debut and its longest flight since the Boeing 787-9 flight-test program began.
The second of three aircraft dedicated to the Boeing 787-9 flight-test program, ZB002, flew non-stop from Seattle’s Boeing Field to Auckland Airport, departing on January 3 at 9:55 a.m. local time and landing some 13 hours, 49 minutes later at Auckland Airport (IATA code AKL), at about 8:45 p.m. local time on January 4.
Auckland lies in a time zone which is 21 hours ahead of the time zone in which Seattle lies.
The aircraft is scheduled to continue on to Alice Springs in the hot desert interior of Australia, for testing in hot weather.
With its fuselage stretched by 20 feet (6 meters) over the 787-8, the 787-9 will fly up to 40 more passengers an additional 300 nautical miles (555 kilometers).
The 787-9 has the same interior design as the 787-8, offering passengers features such as large windows, large stow bins, modern LED lighting, higher humidity, a lower cabin altitude, cleaner air and a smoother ride.
Boeing is on track to deliver the first production 787-9 to launch customer Air New Zealand in mid-2014.
To date, 26 customers from around the world have ordered 402 787-9s, which account for 39 per cent of all Boeing 787 orders.