Delivery ceremony held in Washington for 1st Boeing 787

Sep 26, 2011

EVERETT, Wash. — Hundreds of people who gathered Monday for the delivery ceremony of the first Boeing 787 took cover from rain under the wings of two of the new airplanes at Paine Field, near the factory in Everett, Wash., where they were assembled.

All Nippon Airways signed delivery documents on Sunday and plans to fly its first plane away Tuesday. It goes into service in November in Japan.

"Today we celebrate a significant moment in the history of flight," said Jim McNerney, Boeing chairman, president and CEO. "The 787 Dreamliner is the biggest innovation in commercial aviation since the Boeing 707 introduced the world to passenger jet travel more than 50 years ago. I want to thank ANA and all the employees of Boeing and our partner companies for the talent, technology and teamwork that have brought this game-changing airplane to life."

It's a long-awaited milestone for Boeing after three years of delays.

The jet is almost three and half years behind schedule and highly over budget – some estimates put cost overruns between $12 billion and $18 billion. And initial reports indicate Boeing won’t see profits on the Dreamliner until 2015.

Still, this new generation of 787 marks a number of improvements by Boeing: It’s got a new composite light-weight design, more fuel efficient engines, and state-of-the-art passenger areas, including digital entertainment systems. The changes were intended to keep the Dreamliner in competition with Airbus’s A350.

Boeing has orders for more than 800 Dreamliners from 53 customers and is sold out through 2019.

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