|Quoting MD80fanatic (Reply 2):|
APU startup is considered a "milestone". Hmmm, sensationalistic reporting I'd say.
It was a huge mile stone for Hamilton Sundstrand since that is one of the most sophisticated parts that the company is putting on the airplane. Although you will never see the Hamilton Sundstrand brand name on the 787, the company makes some of the most important electrical (and other) parts on the plane that are essential to operation. Some of these are small, but also some of the most expensive parts on the airplane. Hamilton Sundstrand announced this accomplishment with a press release today. That doesn't mean that you have to read it, but rather for those that want to know about the development progress of the 787, then it is good information to have.
The APU somehow warranted a press release while other key parts have not. However the release came out today yet the test was October 31. This is a huge deal for all of the engineers at Hamilton Sundstrand. It took a lot of work to get that done. The massive electrical generator for the 787 is in the test phase as well. I am working on that project and it is a huge undertaking spending millions and millions of dollars. While the generator isn't a significant milestone as far as the public is concerned, it is a huge deal within Hamilton Sundstrand. While it may not seem like a big deal to aviation enthusiasts, hundreds of engineers along with countless more people have been working hard to keep the various 787 power generation units on schedule.
I take pride in the fact that I as an individual am one person at Hamilton Sundstrand in a giant group encompassing multiple corporations that are working hard to get this plane ready to fly on and on schedule. I have definitely worked some late nights to make sure that parts on this plane does not fall behind schedule. I may be one small person doing a seemingly small part, but the test stands to test the generators (and other 787 electrical components) that I design and implement are extremely important. While I am not asking you to get incredibly excited over this event, I ask that you respect that fact that it is a major accomplishment that many people have dedicated months of their lives to see happen. I am proud of the fact that if the work I do doesn't get completed, then the 787 will not be able to fly. I love aviation and love the fact that I am working towards the future of air travel. It is not sensationalism to release a press release, so I request that people don't belittle the accomplishment.
Here is a copy of the press release that is almost exactly what the article says:
November 15, 2005
In a major program milestone, Hamilton Sundstrand successfully completed its first engine test of the APS 5000 auxiliary power unit (APU) for the Boeing 787 Dreamliner airplane.
This first test was performed on Oct. 31 at HS Power Systems facility in San Diego, California.
Hamilton Sundstrand was chosen by Boeing to provide a wide array of systems for the 787 and expects the program will generate more than $8 billion in revenues over its life.
The APU was started using the new HS auxiliary starter generator and operated at 100% speed under the control of the auxiliary power unit controller. Following an inspection, the APU will undergo a series of performance and load-transient testing.
"We have power!" said Walt Gillette, Boeing vice president and program manager for the 787, as he noted the successful test marked a significant milestone for the Dreamliner program. "To go from contract award to testing a system in only 22 months demonstrates the agility and skill of Hamilton Sundstrand and the Dreamliner team. Working with our international team of partners, we are making terrific progress on the airplane."
Tim Morris, president of HS Aerospace Power Systems, said, "This is just the start of many key milestones for an array of systems to be developed for the Boeing 787 Dreamliner and typifies the system integration capability that Hamilton Sundstrand brings to the program."
Bob Ridgeway, vice president and general manager of Hamilton Sundstrand Power Systems, said "Clearly, we could not have achieved this major objective without the outstanding leadership of Joan Inlow and the dedicated Hamilton Sundstrand APU team in San Diego, our suppliers and the guidance and support of Dan Buchacher and the Boeing APU team in Everett."
[Edited 2005-11-15 20:10:50]
If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!