Boeing [NYSE:BA] announced today that it has reached a major milestone in the design of the all-new 787 Dreamliner. The team has completed 25 percent of the releases required for the program. This means that one quarter of the pieces of information to build parts and tools for assembly have been completed and released to manufacturing organizations for fabrication or procurement.
Releases are the formal documents -- digital models in the case of the 787 program -- that allow purchases to be made, tools to be developed and parts to be built.
"We have seen tremendous progress by our international partners and the Boeing team working on the detailed design of this airplane," said Mike Bair, vice president and general manager of the 787 program. "Twenty-five percent release signifies that the largest elements - like fuselage and wing skins - are defined from the tooling requirements to the specific raw material elements."
The 787, scheduled for delivery beginning in 2008, provides passengers with a better flying experience and operators with a more efficient commercial jetliner. Using 20 percent less fuel per passenger than similarly sized airplanes, the 787 is designed for the environment with lower emissions and quieter takeoffs and landings. Inside the airplane, passengers will find cleaner air, bigger windows, more stowage space and improved lighting. To date, 29 airlines have logged 393 orders and commitments worth more than $55 billion at current list prices since the 787 launch in April 2004, making the Dreamliner the most successful commercial airplane launch in history.
"There is still a lot of work to do as we continue to finalize the design," said Bair. "I couldn't be more proud of our team. They are bringing tremendous energy and expertise to this effort."