ANA (All Nippon Airways) (Tokyo) according to this report by Reuters is planning to conduct from 100 to 200 test roundtrip flights in May after corrections are made to the battery system before the Boeing 787 is returned to revenue service in June.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Nick Dean. The pictured Boeing 787-8 N787EX (msn 34488) was the first to wear ANA colors.
Boeing (Chicago) has received approval from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) (Washington) of the company’s plan to test and certify improvements to the 787’s battery system. Successful completion of each step within the plan will result in the FAA’s approval to resume commercial 787 flights.
“Our top priority is the integrity of our products and the safety of the passengers and crews who fly on them,” said Boeing Chairman, President and CEO Jim McNerney. “Our team has been working around the clock to understand the issues and develop a solution based on extensive analysis and testing following the events that occurred in January. Today’s approval from the FAA is a critical and welcome milestone toward getting the fleet flying again and continuing to deliver on the promise of the 787,” he said.
Ray Conner, president and chief executive officer of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, said that the company’s focus has been on developing a permanent resolution.
“Working with internal and external experts in battery technology, we have proposed a comprehensive set of solutions designed to significantly minimize the potential for battery failure while ensuring that no battery event affects the continued safe operation of the airplane,” said Conner.
“Our proposal includes three layers of improvements. First, we’ve improved design features of the battery to prevent faults from occurring and to isolate any that do. Second, we’ve enhanced production, operating and testing processes to ensure the highest levels of quality and performance of the battery and its components. Third, in the unlikely event of a battery failure, we’ve introduced a new enclosure system that will keep any level of battery overheating from affecting the airplane or being noticed by passengers,” Conner said.
Design feature improvements for the battery include the addition of new thermal and electrical insulation materials and other changes. The enhanced production and testing processes include more stringent screening of battery cells prior to battery assembly. Operational improvements focus on tightening of the system’s voltage range. A key feature of the new enclosure is that it ensures that no fire can develop in the enclosure or in the battery. Additional details of the new design will be provided by Boeing in the days ahead.
Boeing made its certification plan proposal to the FAA in late February. Today the agency agreed that the proposed changes and the detailed test plans address the conditions that resulted in the suspension of 787 operations.
The FAA also granted Boeing permission to begin flight test activities on two airplanes: line number 86, which will conduct tests to demonstrate that the comprehensive set of solutions work as intended in flight and on the ground; and ZA005, which is scheduled to conduct engine improvement tests unrelated to the battery issue. Additional testing may be scheduled as needed.
The certification plan calls for a series of tests that show how the improved battery system will perform in normal and abnormal conditions. The test plans were written based on the FAA’s standards as well as applicable guidelines published by the Radio Technical Commission on Aeronautics (RTCA), an advisory committee that provides recommendations on ways to meet regulatory requirements. The RTCA guidelines were not available when the original 787 battery certification plan was developed.
“We have a great deal of confidence in our solution set and the process for certifying it,” said Conner. “Before 787s return to commercial service, our customers and their passengers want assurance that the improvements being introduced will make this great airplane even better. That’s what this test program will do.”
Copyright Photo: Nick Dean. ANA’s (All Nippon Airways) Boeing 787-8 JA801A (msn 34488) in the special Dreamliner special colors lands at Everett (Paine Field) with Boeing’s facilities in the background.
ANA (All Nippon Airways) has adjusted the number of Boeing 787-8 and 787-9 Dreamliners on order. The four 787-8s that were due to be delivered in fiscal year 2013 and onwards will now be replaced by four 787-9 aircraft. This will give ANA greater flexibility as it expands its international route network.
The total number of Dreamliners on order remains at 55 but now the order will be split at 36 787-8 and 19 787-9 aircraft. ANA has taken delivery of seven 787-8 Dreamliners. The new type has been assigned to domestic routes and also on the Tokyo (Haneda)-Frankfurt route. The carrier plans to launch new 787 service from Tokyo to both Seattle/Tacoma and San Jose, California in the current fiscal year.
Copyright Photo: Akira Uekawa.
ANA (All Nippon Airways (Tokyo) has decided to change 15 of its current orders for the Boeing 787-8 aircraft to the 787-9 model. ANA currently has a total of 55 orders for the Dreamliner.
The 787-9 aircraft is an extended body version of the 787-8 model, appropriate for short, mid-haul and long-haul international routes. The model will also meet the increasing need for 400 seat-capacity aircraft for domestic routes, and will further improve the flexibility of our fleet and network planning. Furthermore, like the 787-8 model, it is a highly fuel efficient aircraft which will enable ANA to reduce operating costs and carbon dioxide emission.
Copyright Photo: Gabor Hajdufi. The first 787-881 to appear in launch customer ANA’s colors is test aircraft ZA002 registered as N787EX (msn 34488). The airliner arrives at Seattle (Boeing Field-King County) after a test flight.
Boeing (Chicago, Seattle, Wichita and Charleston) said that it now expects delivery of the first 787 to ANA in the middle of the first quarter 2011.
The delivery date revision follows an assessment of the availability of an engine needed for the final phases of flight test this fall.
While Boeing works closely with Rolls-Royce to expedite engine availability, flight testing across the test fleet continues as planned.
Boeing said last month that the cumulative impact of a series of issues, including supplier workmanship issues related to the horizontal stabilizer and instrumentation delays, could push first delivery of the 787 a few weeks into 2011. The delay in engine availability has extended that estimate to mid-first quarter 2011.
Meanwhile, due to the new delay, Kenya Airways is threatening to cancel its order for the new airplane.
Copyright Photo: Gabor Hajdufi. Boeing 787-881 N787EX (msn 34488) (test aircraft ZA002) arrives back at Seattle (Boeing Field-King County) after a test flight.
ANA-All Nippon Airways (Tokyo) and Honeywell have signed a 10-year maintenance agreement for support of its equipment on ANA’s new Boeing 787 Dreamliners.
Honeywell will provide spares, logistics and repair services for its equipment on board the aircraft. Honeywell has flight control electronics, navigation radios, crew information systems and interior and exterior lighting.
ANA is expected to receive its first 787-800 in December 2010 or January 2011.
In other news ,ANA is seeking international investment from other partner airlines and investment funds to help set up a new LCC which will be launched in early 2011 according to the Nikkei Business Daily.
ANA is expected to take a 30-50 percent stake in the new LCC. The ANA name will not be used for the new airline.
On the financial side, ANA reported a fiscal first quarter net loss of slightly over $60 million.
Copyright Photo: Gabor Hajdufi. Test aircraft Boeing 787-881 N787EX (msn 34488) “ZA002″ arrives back at Seattle (Boeing Field-King County) painted in full ANA colors.
ANA (All Nippon Airways) Boeing 787-881 N787EX (msn 34488) PAE (Nick Dean), originally uploaded by Airliners Gallery.
Boeing (Chicago, Seattle, Wichita and Charleston) has stated delivery of its new 787 aircraft to ANA (All Nippon Airways) could be delayed into early 2011. Boeing is still hoping it can deliver the new type to ANA by year’s end.
Read the full report in the WSJ:
In other news, Boeing has chosen North Charleston, SC, as the location for its new 787 Dreamliner interiors fabrication facility. Boeing will purchase land from Stone Mountain Industrial Park Inc. BRPH will design the facility, and Pattillo Construction will provide construction services. Employees at the facility will manufacture and assemble airplane interior parts.
The new fabrication factory will be 10 miles (16 km) from Boeing’s 787 final assembly and delivery site in North Charleston (CHS). The close proximity of the two facilities will help improve the efficiency of the final assembly and delivery process in South Carolina. Charleston International Airport (CHS) will become the second 787 assembly plant in 2011 behind Everett (Paine Field) (PAE).
Copyright Photo: Nick Dean. Boeing 787-881 N787EX (msn 34488) is pictured at Everett (Paine Field) in ANA colors.
ANA (All Nippon Airways) Boeing 787-881 N787EX (msn 34488) PAE, originally uploaded by Airliners Gallery.
ANA (All Nippon Airways) (Tokyo) expects to take delivery of the first Boeing 787-881 Dreamliner in November. The new type will first enter revenue service on domestic routes in Japan followed by the first international service in March 2011.
Read the full report in Bloomberg/Businessweek:
Copyright Photo: Nick Dean. The first Dreamliner to receive an airline livery is this 787-881 registered N787EX (msn 34488) in ANA’ colors at Everett (Paine Field).
Continental Airlines, United Airlines and ANA (All Nippon Airways) yesterday (December 23) filed an application with the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) for antitrust immunity to enable the three carriers to create a more efficient and comprehensive trans-Pacific network.
The trans-Pacific joint venture – the first of its kind between the U.S. and Asia – also would enable United, ANA and Continental to compete more effectively with other global alliances, each of which has a significant presence in Tokyo.
Upon DOT approval of the companies’ immunity application, United, ANA and Continental will be able to jointly manage trans-Pacific activities including scheduling, pricing and sales, offering customers a greater selection of routings and a wider range of fare and service options.
Here is the full press release:
Related to this, ANA’s future Boeing 787-881 N787EX (msn 34488) developed some landing gear and brake problems on its previously-reported first flight according to this Seattle Times article:
Originally uploaded by Airliners Gallery
Boeing (Chicago, Seattle, Wichita and Charleston) yesterday (December 22) completed the first flight of the second 787 Dreamliner, designated ZA002 (but actually the pictured 787-881 N787EX, msn 34488). The all-new airplane, which features the 1983 livery of the Dreamliner’s launch customer, ANA (All Nippon Airways) of Japan, took off from Paine Field in Everett, completed a two-hour flight and landed at Boeing Field in Seattle.
Boeing stated “We are delighted that the second Dreamliner is in the livery of our launch customer, ANA,” said Scott Fancher, vice president and general manager of the 787 program. “We are honored by the airline’s support and look forward to delivering ANA the first production airplane next year.”
Captain Randy Neville was at the controls for the flight, with Chief Pilot Mike Carriker operating as co-pilot. Neville and Carriker took the airplane to an altitude of 13,000 feet (3,962 m) and an airspeed of 200 knots, or about 230 miles (370 km) per hour. The airplane took off at 9:09 a.m. PST and landed at 11:10 a.m. PST.
This is the second of six 787s being used in the airplane’s flight-test program. Each of the airplanes will be used for a specific set of tests, with this airplane focusing on systems performance. Like its predecessor, ZA001, the airplane is powered by two Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engines.
In other news, Boeing announced yesterday (December 22) it is taking full control of Global Aeronautica, the midfuselage plant in North Charleston, SC, by buying out its Italian supplier Alenia. In July, Boeing took over the Vought facility at North Charleston (CHS). CHS will be location of the second Dreamliner assembly plant.
Copyright Photo: Nick Dean.