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B787 Type-Certification Progress  
User currently offlinePart147 From Ireland, joined Dec 2008, 499 posts, RR: 0
Posted (5 years 6 months 5 hours ago) and read 6351 times:

Right now, we have a great opportunity to understand just how precise and well planned the type certification process is for a brand new airliner. High, consistent standards are the norm across every aspect of aviation. After all, new aircraft types are tested in every detail to make sure they meet or exceed minimum safety/strength/operational requirements and nothing is left to chance!

It's essential to maintain those standards by keeping ourselves informed, especially during training. However it's a bit difficult sometimes to find good clear information that can be used for training/informational purposes on something as important as this.

I think it would be useful if we could keep a choronological list of each technical milestone that the B787 passes along with a brief explanation as if talking to someone with no prior knowledge. Extra commentary would be good too, but as we all know here on A.net, it sometimes gets in the way of the thread 'flow'. Pictures/video/links to stories would be excellent!

I'll start with Boeing's own website...
http://www.boeing.com/commercial/787family/news/
...it's a nice site, but a bit light on technical content since it includes PR/marketing stuff

So right now, she's just been re-sprayed and will soon be out in the sunshine!...


It's better to ask a stupid question during training, rather than make a REALLY stupid mistake later on!
14 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlinePart147 From Ireland, joined Dec 2008, 499 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (5 years 5 months 4 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 6210 times:

21st March 2009 - out of the paint shop!

Okay I missed this one, She'd been out in the sunshine nearly a week ago!
http://www.flightglobal.com/blogs/fl...he-road-to-first-flight---mar.html



It's better to ask a stupid question during training, rather than make a REALLY stupid mistake later on!
User currently offlinePart147 From Ireland, joined Dec 2008, 499 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (5 years 5 months 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 5784 times:

20th April 2009

Okay, I don't know where she's been for the past month but the gaunlet begins - detailed info here
http://www.flightglobal.com/blogs/fl...etting-from-here-to-there-787.html

These are some announcements beforehand ...
http://www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/thread456421/pg1
http://www.flightglobal.com/blogs/fl...-road-to-787-first-flight---1.html

...and the actual story from this morning...
http://www.flightglobal.com/blogs/fl...boeing-confirms-za001-factory.html

At last, we have something to look forward to - especially the 8-day continuous systems test check is part of the process!

[Edited 2009-04-20 16:13:42]


It's better to ask a stupid question during training, rather than make a REALLY stupid mistake later on!
User currently offlineStitch From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 31003 posts, RR: 86
Reply 3, posted (5 years 5 months 4 days ago) and read 5687 times:
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Another web report noted that Initial gauntlet testing was completed in 12 hours which was ahead of schedule.

User currently offlinePart147 From Ireland, joined Dec 2008, 499 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 5442 times:

29th April 2009

At Last, some firm certification details... It seems that 60% of the paperwork has been completed, so how much more needs to be done before it flies?
http://blog.seattlepi.com/aerospace/...rchives/167597.asp?from=blog_last3

I only have one worry...
Quote "As the 787 development now exceeds a five-year period from when the certification process was begun, talks are underway to evaluate if the aircraft should be subject to rules subsequently adopted regarding emergency egress lighting."

Hmmm? Personally I think that Boeing should ENSURE it complies with ALL current requirements, instead of trying to go along with older rules. After all, it's supposed to be the most up to date airliner in the world yes!? Surely the 787 isn't starting out with obsolete/outdated systems. Surely they can change the design of future aircraft before any metal is cut (or should I say composites) so to speak?



It's better to ask a stupid question during training, rather than make a REALLY stupid mistake later on!
User currently offlineTdscanuck From Canada, joined Jan 2006, 12709 posts, RR: 79
Reply 5, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 5384 times:



Quoting Part147 (Reply 4):
Hmmm? Personally I think that Boeing should ENSURE it complies with ALL current requirements, instead of trying to go along with older rules.

That's totally unrealistic, since requirements are changing all the time and not at all synchronized to any particular aircraft development cycle. What would you do if they brought out a new regulation the day prior to type certification?

Quoting Part147 (Reply 4):
Surely the 787 isn't starting out with obsolete/outdated systems. Surely they can change the design of future aircraft before any metal is cut (or should I say composites) so to speak?

Compliance with FAR's has nothing to do with obsolescene/dated-ness of systems. It just means that you and the FAA agree which set of FAR's you're going to work to and the FAA gives you five years to do it. If you run past five years, you talk about any differences that came up in the intervening five years and figure out if you need to bring yourself up to date.

If you're that concerned about this aspect of the 787, keep in mind that you've got aircraft running around that were certified under the FAR's of 20 years ago.

Tom.


User currently offlinePart147 From Ireland, joined Dec 2008, 499 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 5337 times:



Quoting Tdscanuck (Reply 5):
If you run past five years, you talk about any differences that came up in the intervening five years and figure out if you need to bring yourself up to date.



Quoting Tdscanuck (Reply 5):
If you're that concerned about this aspect of the 787, keep in mind that you've got aircraft running around that were certified under the FAR's of 20 years ago.

That's true, and many more twice that age! But my initial reaction was prompted since it seemed to be a very minor issue, and yet was considered important enough to include in a positive spin type report! So maybe I'm reading too much between the lines here...?

Quoting Tdscanuck (Reply 5):
Surely they can change the design of future aircraft before any metal is cut

I still stand by this statement - I personally think it is important to at least maintain CURRENT legislative standards rather than try to apply 5-year old standards to a brand new aircraft.
Otherwise, why bother coming up with new regs if they can be just ignored?

Good certification procedures ensures compliance with state-of-the-art best practices leading to safe & efficient air transportation



It's better to ask a stupid question during training, rather than make a REALLY stupid mistake later on!
User currently offlineJoeCanuck From Canada, joined Dec 2005, 5471 posts, RR: 30
Reply 7, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 5327 times:



Quoting Part147 (Reply 4):
Quote "As the 787 development now exceeds a five-year period from when the certification process was begun, talks are underway to evaluate if the aircraft should be subject to rules subsequently adopted regarding emergency egress lighting."

I'm not too worried if egress lighting is the biggest issue.



What the...?
User currently offlineOldAeroGuy From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 3526 posts, RR: 66
Reply 8, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 5295 times:



Quoting Part147 (Reply 6):
Quoting Tdscanuck (Reply 5):
Surely they can change the design of future aircraft before any metal is cut

I still stand by this statement - I personally think it is important to at least maintain CURRENT legislative standards rather than try to apply 5-year old standards to a brand new aircraft.
Otherwise, why bother coming up with new regs if they can be just ignored?

Good certification procedures ensures compliance with state-of-the-art best practices leading to safe & efficient air transportation

The problem with your idea is that there are many "flavors" of regulation changes. Many are of the "nice to have" variety that have a small or insignificant effect on overall safety while others are in the "must have" category and address some newly discovered serious safety issue.

Those in the "nice to have" category may be difficult or very expensive to implement on airplanes that are already designed and/or built. As a result, they are not made retroactive to inservice airplanes and the five year rule protects airplanes in the design process.

The "must have" changes are applied to the inservice fleet via Airworhiness Directives while Special Conditions may be written against airplanes in the design stage.



Airplane design is easy, the difficulty is getting them to fly - Barnes Wallis
User currently offlineTdscanuck From Canada, joined Jan 2006, 12709 posts, RR: 79
Reply 9, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 5245 times:



Quoting Part147 (Reply 6):
I still stand by this statement - I personally think it is important to at least maintain CURRENT legislative standards rather than try to apply 5-year old standards to a brand new aircraft.
Otherwise, why bother coming up with new regs if they can be just ignored?

Because they can't be ignored forever...they're driven into all new designs, and forced into any derivative of existing designs. The alternative is to update all aircraft, everywhere, for all regulation changes when they happen. That's an economic and technical non-starter, and has a marginal safety benefit, at best.

Quoting Part147 (Reply 6):
Good certification procedures ensures compliance with state-of-the-art best practices leading to safe & efficient air transportation

Well, no, they don't, unless you want to take the position that all current certification procedures are bad.

Tom.


User currently offlinePart147 From Ireland, joined Dec 2008, 499 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 5205 times:



Quoting Tdscanuck (Reply 9):
Because they can't be ignored forever...they're driven into all new designs

To me, that sounds as if manufacturers resist change

Quoting Tdscanuck (Reply 9):
Quoting Part147 (Reply 6):
Good certification procedures ensures compliance with state-of-the-art best practices leading to safe & efficient air transportation
Well, no, they don't, unless you want to take the position that all current certification procedures are bad.

Ummm, well leave out 'Good' and just say 'Compliance with' Certification Procedures then, i didn't intend to infer any regs are bad - they're there to ensure safety



It's better to ask a stupid question during training, rather than make a REALLY stupid mistake later on!
User currently offlineStitch From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 31003 posts, RR: 86
Reply 11, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 5188 times:
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Quoting Part147 (Reply 10):
To me, that sounds as if manufacturers resist change...

They do, in no small part because so do the operators, who have to spend the money to implement those changes on their in-service aircraft and pay more for their new deliveries because of the extra costs the manufacturer will pass on.


User currently offlineFlybyguy From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 1801 posts, RR: 1
Reply 12, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 5043 times:



Quoting Part147 (Reply 6):
I still stand by this statement - I personally think it is important to at least maintain CURRENT legislative standards rather than try to apply 5-year old standards to a brand new aircraft.
Otherwise, why bother coming up with new regs if they can be just ignored?

Good certification procedures ensures compliance with state-of-the-art best practices leading to safe & efficient air transportation

Unfortunately the lead time and costs are so great that this isn't always possible. Let's say you complete a design that took 2 years... tested the blasted thing to bits and got something that performs it's intended function and is compliant to a particular amendment level of the FARs. Somehow the amendment level changes during the course of that time and new compliance needs to be found... suddenly the 1,000s of hours design work mean nothing and if the new amended regs weren't pegged during testing, all your tests (which by chance cost a boatload) mean nothing and have to be redone. This is unnecessary rework unless some major safety issue is discovered.

Certification is extremely straightforward and intuitive on paper, but in reality it is not. That's why any new airplane program that's run into snags and surpasses the 5 year limit on certification will be heavily dependent on exemptions and FAA concurrence on equivalent levels of safety. This by no means suggests that the plane is unsafe, but means that an airplane must demonstrate that it is capable of performing similarly had the design followed the amended regulations to a "T".



"Are you a pretender... or a thoroughbred?!" - Professor Matt Miller
User currently offlinePart147 From Ireland, joined Dec 2008, 499 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (4 years 9 months 1 week 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 3970 times:

Okay - she's finally flown and I think it's a nice time to bring this thread back, so what are the next steps the her getting a type certificate?...


It's better to ask a stupid question during training, rather than make a REALLY stupid mistake later on!
User currently offlineTdscanuck From Canada, joined Jan 2006, 12709 posts, RR: 79
Reply 14, posted (4 years 9 months 1 week 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 3896 times:



Quoting Part147 (Reply 13):
Okay - she's finally flown and I think it's a nice time to bring this thread back, so what are the next steps the her getting a type certificate?...

The next step is Type Inspection Authorization...that's what formally opens up the certification portion of the flight test program.

Tom.


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