January 17, 2007 Given that we’ve been reporting on Boeing’s swing-tail Large Cargo Freighter known as the Dreamlifter since the project began (here, here, and here), we’re pleased to announce that Boeing yesterday delivered the first major assemblies for the all-new 787 Dreamliner to its partner Global Aeronautica, completing the first-ever delivery cycle using the Dreamlifter, a specially modified 747-400.
"The Dreamlifter proved beyond a doubt that it is the right transportation solution for the lean, global production system we are using to build the 787," said Scott Strode, vice president of Airplane Development and Production for the 787 program. "We can now do in hours what used to take weeks."
The load consisted of section 43, a forward fuselage section made by Kawasaki Heavy Industries, and section 11/45, the center wheel well and center wing tank made by KHI and Fuji Heavy Industries and joined at FHI. The Dreamlifter left Nagoya, Japan, on Friday. It successfully performed some required flight testing in Seattle over the weekend, and headed to Charleston late Sunday. The parts were unloaded yesterday.
"The arrival of our first 787 shipment from Japan is an important milestone," said Randy Smith, chief operating officer of Global Aeronautica, LLC. "Our employees are ready to start work on the first Dreamliner and are honored to be a part of Boeing's worldwide team that's delivering on its promise to bring the most technologically advanced aircraft to customers in 2008."