Boeing said a critical problem related to the 787 Dreamliner's brake software has been resolved, putting the plane one step closer to first flight.
Boeing said a critical problem related to the 787 Dreamliner’s brake software has been resolved, putting the plane one step closer to first flight.
“The issues with the brake software are largely behind us,” said Boeing spokeswoman Yvonne Leach.
The 787 Dreamliner — the jet maker’s most successful new-sales campaign ever, with about 900 sold before the jet has flown — uses new electric brakes rather than hydraulic as on most planes.
Pat Shanahan, the program manager, said in May that the brakes and power system were the last two problem areas as Boeing prepares for first flight and aims for a first delivery in the third quarter of 2009.
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Testing on the 787’s electric system, built by United Technologies’ Hamilton Sundstrand unit, was finished in June.
Electricity plays a bigger role on the 787 than on any other commercial aircraft, with power levels that are five times higher than on the 767.
The plane also is the first to be built mostly with lighter-weight composite materials, which will help reduce fuel consumption.
Shanahan said in July that subcontractor Crane Co. hadn’t been able to get software it was developing for the brakes certified for use. Leach said Friday that “all known software problems are resolved,” and the brakes are now being tested.
The progress was reported Friday by FleetBuzz Editorial blog, which said the problem had been “due to a traceability anomaly” in “highly advanced software being rewritten for the brakes.”
The 787 has been delayed three times due to parts shortages and problems with the new production process, which uses suppliers around the world to build large sections of the plane and ship them to Everett for assembly.
The plane was already 15 months late before the Machinists at Boeing went on strike Sept. 6. The striking workers will vote today on a contract proposal.