September 23, 2013
Credit: Leo Dejillas/Boeing
Boeing kicked off the 787-9 test and certification program on Sept. 17 with an ambitious 5-hr., 16-min. first flight. Crewed by 787-9 Senior Project Pilot Mike Bryan and 787 Chief Pilot Randy Neville, the aircraft took off from Paine Field in Everett, Wash., at 11:02 a.m. local time and returned to Boeing Field, Seattle, at 4:18 p.m.
The flight included evaluations normally conducted during a standard “B-1” Boeing production test sortie as well as assessments related to specific differences associated with the propulsion system and handling characteristics of the longer airframe. The aircraft, designated ZB001, is 20 ft. longer overall than the baseline 787-8, and is powered by the newly certificated, higher-thrust “Package C” version of the Rolls-Royce Trent 1000. Maximum altitude reached during the flight was 20,400 ft., and maximum airspeed was 250 kt.