Boeing introduces 787 Dreamliner, virtually

Posted by Mark Raby

Chicago (IL) - Unveiling two new major projects at once, airplane manufacturing giant Boeing recently showed off its new 787 Dreamliner model via its new virtual assembly line simulation.

The unveiling of the 787 happened through a powerful computer system, which showed a digital, remote glimpse at the assembly line of the new plane, which is scheduled to take its first test flight in the summer of 2007.

The 787 will have up to 20% better fuel economy and updated self-maintenance mechanisms, and will fit between 210 and 330 passengers, says Boeing. Much of the fuel economy will come from the use of composite materials and better engines. The company is also working on reduction of the noise level inside the craft on the new model.

Not to be outdone, the new virtual assembly line system also marks a new technological milestone for Boeing. It allows the manufacturer to double-check all components of the planes to help ensure assembly.

Boeing plans deliverability of the 787 Dreamliner to airlines across the globe starting in 2008, though orders already placed for the new model date all the way to the end of 2013.