Boeing expects to fly 787 test aircraft ZA002 to Tokyo, Japan for the start of service readiness operation validation (SROV) tests with ANA on July 2. The aircraft is being prepped for the tests with the latest software loads and, according to Boeing, will begin the SROV on July 4.
During SROV the aircraft will be flown between cities on four of ANA’s routes in southern Japan over a three-day period to simulate daily airline operations, and perform fit checks of ground equipment. The flights, which will include routes between Tokyo, Osaka, Kansai and Hiroshima, will emulate current domestic operations flown by 767-300s.
Round the clock preparations will see ZA002 make a pre-dawn departure for Japan (Mark Wagner)
Boeing also ferried ZA004 back to Everett from Victorville, Calif on June 30 following the completion of critical fuel burn validation tests of the upgraded version of the Rolls-Royce Trent 1000. This engine variant is destined to power the first long-haul Boeing 787s to be used by ANA in early 2012. Nautical air miles testing of the ‘Package B’ engine, designed to bring the Rolls-powered 787 to within 1% of Boeing’s original specification, comes as ETOPS and function and reliability (F&R) gets underway on the ninth 787, ZA102.
These are aimed at clearing the way to final FAA certification in the third quarter ahead of first delivery of the eighth 787, ZA101, to ANA in August or September. ZA101 will be the first of four initial aircraft to be delivered to Japan with the initial Package A set of preliminary performance improvements.
F&R testing, scheduled to cover around 300 flight hours, also simulates various normal and non-normal operations in a realistic airline-like flight environment. ETOPS testing, which is included within the F&R block, is designed to validate the ability of the 787 to safely divert for a variety of reasons, including long flights with one engine shut down.
Boeing is also continuing certification testing with General Electric GEnx-1B engines and will conduct a separate F&R/ETOPS test program for that version. Current GEnx-1B tests include in-flight re-starting of the engine using ZA006.