Boeing ships first South Carolina 787
Work on the Boeing South Carolina Final Assembly and Delivery Center began in November 2009, production of the first South Carolina-built 787 began in mid-2011 and the completed airplane rolled out of the factory in April. That facility fabricates, integrates and assembles the midbody and aftbody fuselage sections for all 787 Dreamliner and completed sections are joined in South Carolina Final Assembly or transported to 787 Final Assembly in Everett, Washington. Boeing South Carolina will increase final assembly production to three 787s per month by the end of 2013.
"Within just three years of breaking ground, we have flown and delivered our first airplane built at Boeing South Carolina," said Jack Jones, vice president and general manager, Boeing South Carolina. "This is a tribute to the remarkable Boeing South Carolina team and the support we have received from our airline customers, our supplier partners and the Boeing enterprise, as well as the relationship we have with the State of South Carolina."
Dinesh Keskar, senior vice president of Asia Pacific and India Sales, Boeing Commercial Airplanes, praised Boeing's long, successful partnership with Air India, including delivery in September of its first two of 27 Dreamliners. "With two 787s successfully introduced to Air India's fleet, passengers are enjoying breakthrough features such as larger windows, lower cabin altitude and unprecedented flying experience," said Keskar. Today's delivery marks the 28th 787 Dreamliner delivered to date.
After months of delays, this is a big step for Boeing and Air India helped a lot. The airliner was waiting, made the Indian government to approve the compensation deal - they expected first planes in 2008 - got a $500 million financing bridge and, according to Airfinance Journal, asked Boeing for a loan of about $100 million to finance its third 787. With such partnership it would be impossible to complete the job.
"We're delighted to be the first airline in the world to take delivery of a Dreamliner from this beautiful factory and look forward to taking many more," said Air India Board Member K.M. Unni. ■