Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, United States of America
Boeing's 787-9 Dreamliner is a stretched variant of the 787-8 aircraft. The aircraft will have a seating capacity suitable for 250-290 passengers.
It can travel up to a range of 14,800 to 15,750km. Boeing's 787-9 will offer new passenger-pleasing features and deliver high performance, while also consuming 20% less fuel than any other aircraft in its class.
The maiden flight of the 787-9 is scheduled to take place in the second half of 2013. The first aircraft is expected to be delivered in early 2014.
Orders and deliveries of Boeing's aircraft
In September 2012, All Nippon Airlines (ANA) placed an order for 11 additional 787-9 Dreamliners, bringing the total number of 787-9s ordered by ANA to 30.
The JAL Group (JAL) placed an order for 20 787-9 aircraft in January 2012. The order includes ten new purchases and conversion of ten Boeing 787-8s ordered earlier by JAL. Air New Zealand placed an order for two 787-9 aircraft in February 2012.
In December 2011, Boeing received a $2.8bn contract from Etihad Airway for ten 787-9 aircraft and two 777 Freighters. Boeing was also awarded a contract by Air France-KLM Group for 25 787-9 Dreamliners in the same month.
Boeing received an order from Saudi Arabian Airlines for eight 787-9 aircraft in November 2010.
In October 2006, Singapore Airlines placed an order for 20 Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners, plus purchase rights for 20 additional aircraft.
Design features of the 787-9 Dreamliner
The visionary design of the 787-9 incorporates a one-piece fuselage and low-swept back wings. The majority of the primary structure including the fuselage and wings are made of composite materials such as Carbon Sandwich, Carbon Laminate and a glass / carbon hybrid. These materials make up 50% of the 787's weight.
The composite wing structure provides the aircraft with a higher aspect ratio. Combined with high efficiency raked wing tips, the high aspect ratio wings enhance speed while reducing the consumption of fuel. The simple pivot trailing edge flaps provide the aircraft with high lift-to-drag characteristics without sacrificing performance.
The design and build work of the 787 employs new technologies for achieving efficiency in the production process. The use of one-piece barrel eliminated 1,500 aluminium sheets and about 50,000 fixings.
In June 2012, GKN Aerospace was contracted to supply parts for the horizontal stabiliser of the aircraft.
Boeing 787-9 flight deck technology
The 787-9 flight deck is equipped with navigation and communication technology and an avionics suite. The standard instrumentation includes a dual head-up display (HUD), flat panel multifunction displays, dual electronic flight bags (EFB) and an electronic check list.
The wide 12inx9.1in displays provide a clear view of the information related to the flight and navigation systems. The reprogrammable displays can be incorporated with future advancements without hardware modifications. The onboard fly-by-wire control system allows the pilot to actuate wing and tail control surfaces.
Cabin of Boeing's 787-9 Dreamliner
The 787's cabin features wider aisles and seats, large dimmable windows, spacious stowage and dynamic LED lighting. The typical seating arrangement includes Economy (214), Business (50) and First Class (16) seats. The aircraft will offer a total cargo volume of 153 cubic metres. Each passenger is provided with enough space for their baggage.
The overhead compartment can store one large roll-aboard bag. The new stowage bin design integrates touch points which allow passengers to easily open, load and close the bins.
The large dimmable windows of 787-9 are 30% bigger than a similarly sized aircraft on the market. The tint of the window can be changed by actuating an electrochromic window system with the touch of a button. The system also regulates the cabin temperature when the aircraft is on the ground in hot weather.
Engines and landing gear suppliers
The 787-9 Dreamliner will be powered by General Electric GEnx or Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engines.
Each engine type is capable of developing 55,000lb to 74,000lb of thrust. GEnx is a low-risk, high-value, high-bypass turbofan jet engine developed from the GE90 engine. It will deliver 15% better fuel consumption.
The Trent 1000 is the cleanest and lightest engine developed from the earlier Trent series engines. It is the launch engine for all models in the Boeing 787 family.
The main and nose landing gear will be supplied by Messier-Dowty, while landing gear actuation systems will be provided by Smiths Aerospace. The electric braking system from Goodrich and Messier-Bugatti will deliver advantages over hydraulic brakes.
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