787 Dreamliner Dress Rehearsal Planned

EVERETT, Wash. --

Boeing is about to take a big step on the road to finally delivering a 787.

Boeing announced just after midnight Thursday that it is planning to work with All Nippon Airways on a "dress rehearsal" for the Dreamliner.

The "Service Readiness Validation" exercise will take place in a little over a month.

They'll be using the second Dreamliner, “ZA002”, which is painted in All Nippon's livery.

ANA crews, working with Boeing employees, will operate the airplane just as if it were in scheduled airline service, except with no passengers.

They'll fly it between Haneda Airport in Tokyo and airports in Osaka, Okayama, and Hiroshima.

ANA's maintenance crews will also practice maintaining and servicing the 787.

The idea is to work out any unanticipated issues, before paying customers step on board.

This is set to happen the week of July 4th and is considered a major final step before the plane enters into service.

All Nippon Airways is the launch customer for the 787, and has 55 of the jets on order.

One other piece of news is in the very last sentence of the release.

It says Boeing expects to deliver the first 787 to ANA “In the August to September timeframe”.

That would keep the delivery on track with Boeing’s most recent projections that it would happen in the third quarter of 2011.

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