Boeing's 787 Dreamliner
Boeing's 787 Dreamliner - 
Listen To The Story


Bill Radke: Boeing's 787 Dreamliner is finally set to fly for the first time -- as early as tomorrow. That plane is more than two years behind schedule. Marketplace's Mitchell Hartman has our story.

Mitchell Hartman: The 250-passenger jet has sophisticated electronics and lightweight composite plastics that'll make it 20 percent more fuel-efficient than similar aircraft flying today. The 787 will go farther, and have better air quality in the passenger cabin as well.

Boeing spokesman Jim Proulx:

Jim Proulx: We're very excited to get the airplane in the air and begin our rigorous flight-test program so we can validate this game-changing airplane and get it in the hands of our customers.

Proulx says Boeing expects to deliver the first Dreamliners a year from now. Aerospace analyst Scott Hamilton isn't so sure.

Scott Hamilton: There have been so many things that have gone wrong, I know Boeing is going to try to move heaven and earth. But a flight-test program is designed to uncover problems.

Hamilton says those problems could mean more delays. Boeing already has 840 Dreamliner orders, but the delays have given European rival Airbus a chance to catch up with its new jet, which debuts in 2013.

I'm Mitchell Hartman for Marketplace.

Follow Mitchell Hartman at @entrepreneurguy