By Sumaila Ogbaje
Abuja – The Boeing 787-10, the third and largest 787 variant, has gained the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certification, clearing the way for first delivery to Singapore Airlines during the first half of 2018.
A statement by Boeing on Tuesday and made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), disclosed that other aviation regulatory agencies were expected to follow the FAA’s lead and certify the airplane before it entered service.
According to the statement, an 18-ft. stretch of the 787-9, the 787-10 is designed to seat 330 passengers in typical two-class configuration.
“It has 6,430 nautical miles (11,910 km) of range. Boeing noted that it ‘retains over 95 per cent commonality’ with the 787-9 while allowing for more passengers and cargo”.
The company said the certification came after a flight test programme that began March 31, 2017 in North Charleston, South Carolina, where Boeing’s 787-10 final assembly line is located.
It explained that the certification campaign involved three flight test aircraft accumulating about 900 flight hours.
According to the manufacturer, Boeing’s flight test program team took the airplanes through a series of tests to confirm the airplane’s handling, systems and overall performance met internal requirements and certification standards to ensure safety of flight.
“There are more than 170 orders for the 787-10 from nine customers while Singapore Airlines has committed to 49 787-10s, North American launch customer United Airlines has 14 on order.
“Other 787-10 customers include Air France-KLM (seven on order), Air Lease Corp. (25), All Nippon Airways (three), British Airways (12), Etihad Airways (30), EVA Air (18) and GE Capital Aviation Services (10),” it said.