By Guest Ambassablogger Cynthia of the Airport Authority’s Marketing & Communications Division
You may have heard the news or been one of the eager watchers here at the airport on March 12 when the new Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner flew into town. Boeing brought the aircraft in for a personal visit with those folks who helped build her. If you were not one of those special few, you will have a chance to see the Dreamliner beginning in December, when Japan Airlines starts nonstop flights between San Diego and Tokyo, Japan. Initial service will be four times a week, with daily service scheduled to begin in March 2013.
I watched the 787’s approach from the airports’ Operations Duty Managers Office. Her approach reminded me of watching a graceful ballerina during her final movements of a performance. The pilot touched down with a gentle landing and was rewarded with a round of applause — which I’m sure he was oblivious to. It was truly a treat to watch this aircraft maneuver across the runway and park in her overnight spot at Landmark Aviation.
Here are a few specs on the new Dreamliner so you can impress your friends or be prepared for your next round of trivia:
- The 787-8 will use 20% less fuel than the Boeing 767 it is designed to replace.
- It has a base passenger configuration of 224 seats, but airlines are configuring the aircraft with as few as 186 seats and as many as 240 seats, depending on the type of service they are providing.
- Its range is from 5,500 – 7,200 nautical miles, depending on the amount of passengers and cargo carried.
- It is 186 feet long and 56 feet high with a wingspan of 197’3” and has a cruise speed of Mach 0.85.
- The 787-8 has a larger sister that will be available in 2015. She has similar fuel economy, is 20 feet longer, seats 259 passengers in a standard configuration and can carry a greater payload over the same distances as the 787-8.
If you’re like me and always wanted to visit Asia, a nonstop flight to Tokyo’s Narita Airport, with its hub operations connecting to many Asian destinations, could be the first step in getting there. It’s time to start saving for the trip. Now where did I put that piggy bank?