Boeing’s New Dreamliner 787-9 Makes First Flight

By Richard Castellino,
Money and Investing Writer

Last week on Tuesday, September 17, Boeing Commercial Airplane’s (NYSE:BA) new 787-9 Dreamliner took flight for the first time. It was only in 2004 that Boeing launched the first of the Dreamliner series, the 787, which was an instant success.

The original 787 reached a record number orders from All-Nippon Airways, and additional orders globally. Overall, Boeing sold over 900 of the original 787, and earned over $200 billion in sales.

Boeing’s great success can best be attributed to their innovative products and superior designs. Boeing utilizes an elite team of international aerospace companies, whom ultimately build the planes at Boeing’s main facility in North Charleston, S.C.

The 787-9 encompasses numerous new features such as framework utilizing lightweight composite material, which makes up 50 percent of the aircraft.

Boeing also equipped the craft with a health monitoring system, which allows the aircraft to monitor its performance and maintenance schedule.

Through the health monitoring system, the aircraft is able to notify ground stationed computer analyst for technological evaluation. An additional improvement to the original Dreamliner includes new engines designed by both General Electric (NYSE:GE) and Rolls-Royce, which provide optimal performance and superior fuel economy.

Although the 787-9 is ahead of its time, the aircraft is much easier to manufacture compared to older designs. Traditionally, the 787 was manufactured by using an estimated 1,500 sheets of aluminum, and about 40,000 to 50,000 supports per sheet. The new 787-9 is manufactured utilizing multiple single piece sections.

The new Dreamliner is also equipped with seating for 250-290 passengers, and is capable of traveling 8,000 to 8,500 nautical miles. That is 40 more passengers and 3,000 more miles of flight range compared to the previous 787-8.

Boeing has already received numerous orders for the 787-9. Globally, 25 customers have already ordered 388 787-9s (40 percent of all orders placed for the previous 787).

The 787-9 is not the only air craft produced by the Boeing Company that has had an instant response from buyers.

Deutsche Lufthansa AG has expressed great interest in an upgraded version of Boeing’s 777X jet, and has agreed to purchase 34 of the jets prior to the craft’s approval from the United States plane maker’s board.

Similarly, a division of Lufthansa located in Cologne Germany has agreed to purchase 25 of Boeing’s Airbus SAS A350-900s. According to Bloomberg News, list prices suggest that this transaction has a value of about $19 billion alone.

There is no question that Boeing’s commercial planes are producing lucrative gains.  Boeing reported an estimated 7 percent gain, only in the first half of the year.

Overall, Boeing enjoyed a 16.5 percent increase in operating profits costs. Throughout 2013 Boeing’s stocks have been up consistently 57 percent, and show no signs of decline: a good sign for one of the main aerospace companies in the world.

A version of this article appeared in the Tuesday, Sept. 24 print edition.

Contact Richard at

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