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Dreamliner will need less maintenance

Dreamliner to be 30% less expensive to maintain

[December 24th 2008]

Boeing 787 Dreamliner

Aircraft manufacturer Boeing says its long awaited 787 Dreamliner will require less maintenance less often than similarly sized jets.

The news comes as the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approves the new 787 Dreamliner’s scheduled maintenance programme. The maintenance approval by the Maintenance Review Board Report (MRBR) of the FAA is one of the key requirements before the Dreamliner can be certified for commercial flights.

"The MRBR approval is a result of the most comprehensive maintenance programme development effort in the history of the industry," comments Boeing 787 director of services and support, Mike Fleming.

Boeing has designed the Dreamliner to be 30% less expensive to maintain than any comparable aircraft. The savings have been made possible because of the advanced design of the 787, which uses composite materials wherever possible.

"The 787 maintenance programme is one important aspect that ensures the continued airworthiness of the 787 while reducing overall maintenance burden on the operator. This programme will enable significant operational efficiencies for airlines that fly the 787," says 787 chief mechanic, Justin Hale.

Boeing says that because the Dreamliner needs less maintenance less often than comparably sized planes it will be available for service more often, “leading to significant financial and scheduling opportunities for airlines”.

The much anticipated Dreamliner has suffered from several delays since it was announced. Earlier this month Boeing said that the first flight of the Dreamliner had been put back to the second quarter of 2009 and deliveries to airlines would commence in the first quarter of 2010. This means the plane is now almost two years behind schedule.

Virgin Atlantic recently ordered 15 787-9 Dreamliners with anticipated delivery from 2011. The 787-9 Dreamliner burns about 27% less fuel and has a noise footprint 60% lower the A340-300, the aircraft it will replace in the Virgin Atlantic fleet.

Written by: Nick Purdom

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