The first 787 test aircraft powered by GEnx-1B engines completed its first flight late Wednesday, landing at Boeing Field in Seattle at 6:29 p.m. local time following a 3 hr. 48 min. flight.|
The aircraft is the fifth of six 787s in the Dreamliner flight test program (ATW Daily News, April 22). A second GEnx-1B-powered 787 will take flight before the end of July, Boeing said.
Capt. Mike Bryan, the Boeing pilot who helmed the flight, said, "The airplane handled just like I expected. It was just like every other 787 flight that I've flown in the last several months: Smooth, per plan and excellent."
Boeing said the aircraft, ZA005, "will be used to test the General Electric engine package and demonstrate that the changes made with the new engine do not change the airplane's handling characteristics."
GE Aviation GM-GEnx Program Tom Brisken said, "The GEnx engine program has been designing, developing and testing the engine for five years so [first flight was] a testament to the team's extraordinary efforts." The GEnx-2B engine has been in operation since February powering the 747-8 freighter that is in the midst of its flight test program (ATW Daily News, June 15).
GE said it has received about 1,300 orders for the GEnx including 800 -1Bs to power 787s. It is the fastest-selling commercial aircraft engine in the company's history.