EVERETT — The first flight of the Boeing 777X, the company’s largest twin-engine jet, has been rescheduled for Friday, but, again, the test is dependent on weather and other factors, the Boeing Co. tweeted on Thursday.
The twin-aisle jet, built at Boeing’s main wide-body assembly plant in Everett, was scheduled to take its first test flight on Thursday morning at Paine Field in Everett, but on Wednesday night Boeing postponed the event due to weather.
“Our #777X is ready to fly tomorrow, subject to weather and other factors,” the company tweeted. A live webcast is planned for 9:25 a.m. at Boeing.com.
The test flight is scheduled for 10 a.m., but that “is an estimate and delays can occur,” Boeing spokesman Paul Bergman said.
The test flight was scheduled to take place last summer but was delayed due to problems with the GE Aviation GE9X turbine engines. A component in the front of the engine’s compressor was prematurely showing signs of wear.
GE redesigned the blades, but they had to go through another round of tests and certification.
Our #777X is ready to fly tomorrow, subject to weather and other factors. Our live broadcast will begin at 9:25 a.m. PST. Join us as our new airplane begins the next phase of its rigorous test program.
— Boeing Airplanes (@BoeingAirplanes) January 23, 2020
The issue forced Boeing to delay the 777X first flight from mid-2019 until now. The program is behind schedule by about a year.
Even after a successful test flight, it can take a year or more for a new plane to be certified by the Federal Aviation Administration. After a certification process that gave a pass to a faulty control system on the 737 Max, the process for the 777X is likely to be more rigorous.
The 777X’s most distinctive design features are carbon-composite wings and 11-foot folding wingtips. The design increases lift and reduces fuel consumption while accommodating airports served by the present 777 series.
Janice Podsada; email@example.com; 425-339-3097; Twitter: JanicePods