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#1 fountainhall

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Posted 01 September 2012 - 09:42 PM

The first 787 Dreamliner deliveries were to ANA and Japan Airlines. Would you have guessed that the next airline on the delivery list was - Ethiopian?

I admit I have never flown Ethiopian but am told is is in fact a good airline (it gets 3-stars from Skytrax). But it just seems strange that such an advanced plane would join an airline whose medium- and long-haul fleet until recently was primarily ageing 767s and 757s. That said, it has in the last two years also added five 777s.

#2 Bob

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Posted 02 September 2012 - 12:10 AM

Just read an online article in which United was announcing which domestic routes (Houston to Chicago first) it would use it's first 787 (which they said they'd have by the end of this month).

#3 fountainhall

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Posted 02 September 2012 - 03:19 PM

SInce the 787 is intended for long-haul point-to-point flights, I assume airlines use their first deliveries on short-haul routes so that pilots can clock up some actual miles, rather than simulator miles, before setting off on longer flights.

Back to Ethiopian. I am sure there is little comparison, but I can't help thinking back to the early 1970s when Turkish Airlines took delivery of one of the early DC10s. It was originally intended for United which was not ready for it. So it was leased out to Turkish. In 1974 it crashed after take-off from Paris with the loss of 346 lives. the worst plane crash ever with no survivors.

The DC10 had experienced earlier problems with a faulty cargo door design. Prior to Turkish receiving delivery, the NTSB had issued a service bulletin mandating changes. An investigation by the Turkish plane's insurers found that these changes had not been made. Furthermore, when Turkish staff also had difficulty closing the cargo door, its maintenance staff filed down the locking pins so they withstood a mere 15 lbs of pressure instead of the design limit of 300 lbs. So, whilst failure of the cargo door was the primary cause, it was determined that Turkish Airlines lack of experience in operating a sophisticated aircraft and modifications made to increase its passenger capacity were underlying causes.

#4 lexusgs

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 04:51 PM

The first 787 Dreamliner deliveries were to ANA and Japan Airlines. Would you have guessed that the next airline on the delivery list was - Ethiopian?

I admit I have never flown Ethiopian but am told is is in fact a good airline (it gets 3-stars from Skytrax). But it just seems strange that such an advanced plane would join an airline whose medium- and long-haul fleet until recently was primarily ageing 767s and 757s. That said, it has in the last two years also added five 777s.



Ethiopian has a long history of American backing/aid from it's inception.

This info from Wiki:

The carrier was eventually founded as Ethiopian Air Lines on 21 December 1945, with aid from both Transcontinental Air Transport and Western Air Express, which later merged into TWA.The airline relied upon American pilots, technicians, administrators and accountants; it even had TWA General Managers On its 25th anniversary in 1971, the company was ready to continue without foreign assistance. Since then, Ethiopian Airlines has been managed and staffed by Ethiopian personnel. The first Ethiopian General Manager was Semret Medhane, who served in this position for the period 1971-1975.

#5 fountainhall

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Posted 15 December 2012 - 09:47 AM

As for the Dreamliner, I said I'd wait till it had been in service for a couple of years or so before taking it. I did the same for the A380 and now it's my favourite aircraft.


Like most new aircraft, the 787 has started to experience a number of problems which a Boeing executive has described as “minor teething problems”.

Not so, says the Ai Baker, boss of Qatar Airlines which has won the Skytrax Award for Best Airline in the World for two years running. Baker has described the problems as “unacceptable” and warned that Boeing “has got to get its act together very fast because we at Qatar Airways will not accept any more defects.”

Qatar’s third 787 was found to have a failure as soon as it was delivered. It has been grounded since December 9, Repair may take another three days.

“These problems are unacceptable because this aircraft has been flying for the last 14 months,” Al Baker said.


The 787 uses five times as much electricity as older jets and the fault seems to be in electrical components in one of the generators, all of which helps the aircraft save fuel. A United 787 was forced to land on December 4 after a similar failure. A week ago, a separate fuel-leak problem led the FAA to order inspections and repair on all 787s.

Some months ago, ANA grounded five 787s for an engine problem. At roughly the same time, a 787 test flight trashed a GE engine on a test flight from Boeing's plant in North Carolina.

“Two aircraft having the same problem — the same major problem — so quickly is a cause of concern,” Al Baker said, adding that Doha-based Qatar Air will ask Boeing to cover its losses. “Definitely we will demand compensation. We are not buying airplanes from them to put in a museum.”


http://seattletimes....html?prmid=4939

Note: My quote above comes from the “T+L's Best Airlines” thread.

#6 z909

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Posted 15 December 2012 - 01:56 PM

Well if the US president isn't permitted to fly on any aircraft type that's not being in service for 5 years, I'll adopt the same policy. The Dreamliner is on my blacklist for now.

#7 Mysteryman

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Posted 15 December 2012 - 07:14 PM

http://tinyurl.com/bobw6ql is an intresting site. It has a lot of advertising, so it might be slow to load.

#8 fountainhall

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 02:33 PM

A fire broke out last night on a Dreamliner operated by JAL as it landed at Boston . According to CNN

 

"Upon arrival, we observed a heavy smoke condition in the entire cabin," said Bob Donahue, chief of the Massport Fire Rescue Department. "We found a fire condition about midship in the avionics compartment underneath. We advanced an aggressive, offensive fire attack."

 

Batteries used to start the auxiliary power unit, which provides electricity for ground operations, are located in the small area in the belly of the plane.

 

"We did have a flare-up. There was a small explosion -- one of the batteries -- and we again went in with a secondary attack and were again able to knock it down," Donahue said . . .

 

"This is an extremely serious situation," Kevin Hiatt, a former pilot and vice president with the Flight Safety Foundation, told CNN. "If there is any problem I think you will see something come out very shortly."

 



#9 z909

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 01:31 AM

Just let other people put mileage on these planes for a few years yet.   It's their choice.



#10 KhorTose

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 10:21 AM

Well so far no one has died yet, so I would still call the problems minor.  Many of the reviews I have read have been good, and I would fly it if I got a chance.  However, have to agree a five year time period with no crashes would be a nice thing to have first, but what the hell I'm not a president.



#11 fountainhall

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 05:24 PM

Now a second JAL Dreamliner has encountered problems - again at Boston Airport. Only 24 hours after the first had an on board fire, a second had take-off cancelled because of a fuel leak. Apparently 150 litres of fuel (40 gallons) spilled and the plane had to be towed back to the gate. JAL called the problem "a mechanical issue!"

 

The plane finally took off for Tokyo 3 1/2 hours late.

 

http://www.guardian....-fire-fuel-leak



#12 fountainhall

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Posted 12 January 2013 - 10:20 AM

Following yet more small problems with Dreamliners - including a cracked windscreen and an oil leak in a generator - the FAA has ordered a probe into the "design, manufacture and assembly" of the Dreamliner. Naturally everyone has said the plane is safe! The probe will concentrate particularly on the electronics which the Dreamliner uses in place of the hydraulics on most other aircraft, and the composite materials which make up much of the structure. On CNN last night, an FAA spokeman said they will pay particular attention to the latter to ensure there are no issues with delamination which occured on one 787 last February.

 

http://money.cnn.com...dreamliner-faa/



#13 thaiworthy

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 11:10 AM

CNN reports two Japanese airlines have grounded their fleets of Boeing 787 Dreamliners after an emergency landing Wednesday.

An All Nippon Airways 787 made an emergency landing in Japan after an alarm signal on a battery activated, an ANA spokesman said. ANA has 17 Dreamliners.

Japan Airlines also announced it is grounding its seven 787s.

Dreamliner troubles dating back four months include a battery fire last week and earlier reports of an oil leak, a fuel leak, engine cracks and a damaged cockpit window, (see Fountainhall's post above.)



#14 kokopelli

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 11:37 AM

and a damaged cockpit window, (see Fountainhall's post above.)

A cracked window made me recall an incident on one jetliner where the cockpit window blew out due to faulty screws. The pilot flew out the window and his ankles hooked on the window edge as the other crew members held onto him until they could land the plane. Luckily they were close to an airport and not above the middle of the Atlantic. No, this was not a 787.

#15 fountainhall

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 01:00 PM

That incident took place over the UK and it was an absolute miracle that the captain survived the ordeal. The crew held on to the captain's legs for dear life. Had they let go, it was 99% certain he would have been sucked into en engine with the total loss of the plane as a result.

 

But, as thaiworthy points out, there is much more serious news today about the Dreamliner. Japan has grounded all its 23 Dreamliners from today. In yesterday's incident on a Japan domestic flight, there was apparently an erroneous indication of a battery malfuction. But smoke was also detected in the cockpit - hence the emergency landing.The battery concerned was of the same type that caused the fire on a JAL flight at Boston last week.

 

Amateur vdo of the evacuation has now been seen all round the world and must lead to far greater problems in the public's mind for Boeing and the aircraft.

 

"I think you're nearing the tipping point where they need to regard this as a serious crisis," said Richard Aboulafia, a senior analyst with the Teal Group in Fairfax, Virginia. "This is going to change people's perception of the aircraft if they don't act quickly."

http://www.cnbc.com/id/100382532

 

That said, though, both airlines have announced they expect the planes may be back in the air from tomorrow following checks.



#16 fountainhall

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 07:00 PM

This site has a graphic interactive display of the dozen faults found on Dreamliners

 

http://www.guardian....lts-interactive



#17 z909

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 02:49 AM

On the subject of cracked windows, I think at least one of the "new generation" planes is running higher cabin pressure than the older ones.  So if a window did fail, presumably the pressure differential will be higher.

 

Whatever, just be glad that it's still relatively simple to avoid flying A380s and Dreamliners right now.

 

When someone puts a new plane into the high volume 737 - A320 market, I fear it may be more difficult to spot them before booking.



#18 fountainhall

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 09:00 AM

The Dreamliner has the higher cabin pressure than other aircraft and this is one its selling points. Seems it's equivalent to around 6,000 ft. as against 8,000 ft. or so for others. Yet, I have heard one commentator say he noticed little difference!

 

Cabin humidity is also usually set at 15%, which must make a difference as the norm is around 4%/ Have you ever seen a newspaper in the cabin after a 12-hour flight? The pages are crinkly and brittle. That's what happens to your skin and is the best reason for always using a face and hand moisturiser when on long flights.

 

I've just completed two more A380 flights. I really love that aircraft!



#19 thaiworthy

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 09:53 AM

CNN reports that U.S. regulators have ordered airlines to stop flying their Boeing Dreamliner jets until they can show they've fixed a fire risk linked to battery failures aboard the jets.

The move by the Federal Aviation Administration follows an emergency landing in Japan that prompted that country's two major airlines to ground their fleets of 787s, and a similar problem aboard a Dreamliner on the ground in Boston nine days earlier.

The FAA said United is the only U.S. airline operating the 787, with six in service.
 



#20 fountainhall

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 11:44 AM

Whatever Boeing and the airlines now say, this is far more serious than they will claim. The FAA directive only covers the USA, but the CNN report adds, “its directive also signals international aviation authorities to take 'parallel action' regarding their own airlines.” Chile’s LAN and Air india have followed suit with 3 and 6 Dreamliners respectively. The withdrawal of so many aircraft will give the airlines' schedulers one huge headache. And I wonder if any of the airlines with Dreamliners on order will now start to consider alternative aircraft for their fleets. The longer this goes on, the less confidence will the flying public have in the aircraft.

 

The last time I can remember such an FAA action was in the summer of 1979 when airlines were ordered to ground the DC10 for several months. But that action came after a number of total loss crashes, including a Turkish Airlines flight on take-off from Paris and an American Airlines crash on take-off from Chicago.

 

No sooner were the aircraft flying again, a New Zealand DC10 crashed in Antarctica, again with total loss of life. These accidents all but killed that aircraft, leading MacDonnell Douglas to hasten the production of the improved MD-11.

 

But the electrical problems on the Dreamliner do not appear to be anywhere near as serious as the design issues on the DC10. So I expect they’ll be flying again quite soon.






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