The Boeing Company [NYSE: BA] announced today it will repair the 307 Stratoliner airplane to the condition it was in when the initial restoration was completed last year. The repair team has inspected the damage and determined there is only secondary structural damage to the airplane.
The 307 has been part of the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum collection since 1972 and is slated for display at the museum's new companion facility, the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, in Northern Virginia.
"We have ramped up our efforts to repair the airplane," said Dave Knowlen, the program manager for repairing the airplane. "Approximately 70 people, a combination of full-time employees and volunteers, are dedicated to this effort. Many of the volunteers are putting in endless hours to bring this airplane back to airworthy condition."
The repair effort involves cleaning, repairing and reinstalling parts. Boeing will supply the appropriate resources to accomplish the task in the summer of 2003, which is when the company originally planned to deliver the airplane to the Udvar-Hazy Center. The facility at Washington Dulles International Airport will open in December 2003.
Knowlen said the Boeing Stratoliner team is especially grateful to the volunteers working on the airplane and the public for the outpouring of support for the repair efforts
"The public's support has meant a lot to the team, realizing that there are many people around the world who appreciate this airplane's role in aviation history," Knowlen said.