Dreamliner Toilet Malfunction Grounds Japan Airlines Flight

The Dreamliner hasn’t been such a dream thus far. Problems have been popping up with the Dreamliner since its first flight. The latest problem occurred with a Japan Airlines flight departing from Moscow. The plane had to turn around mid-flight today because of a problem in the plane’s bathroom. The plane experienced a toilet malfunction, which is said to have been caused by an electrical glitch, according to Reuters. It’s unclear what the exact nature of the toilet malfunction was, but I think we can take it for granted that the toilet wasn’t working and that a nobody wants to be on a flight with a broken toilet.

We Must Be ‘Dreaming’: New 787 Boasts Rainbow Ceiling

Move over, Virgin. You’re not the only ones with in-flight mood lighting. The new 787 Dreamliner is taking ambient lighting to a new level, offering up a literal rainbow of color on the ceiling.

The inaugural 787 flight took off on Tuesday from Seattle to Tokyo after a day-long delay due to a faulty cooling valve.

Want to take a ride on the Dreamliner? You’ll probably have to tackle a long-haul route, but United will show off their shiny new plane on a flight from Houston to Chicago on Nov. 4, and alternate routes between Houston, Chicago and Newark over the next few months, USA Today reports.

A special thanks to Mary Jo Manzanares (Traveilng with MJ) for the tip.

United Airlines Puts First North American Dreamliner In The Air

Over the weekend, United Airlines put the first of 50 Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft in the air. Said to be the most technologically advanced aircraft ever built, the 787 will initially be used by United on international flights to Asia, Africa and Europe. But first, a series of domestic flights will showcase the aircraft around the United States.

“As the North American launch customer, we are delighted to be getting our first 787 Dreamliner,” said Jeff Smisek, president and chief executive of United in a Seattle Post Intelligencer article.” As we continue to build the world’s leading airline, we are excited for our customers and co-workers to experience this game-changing aircraft.”

And experience it they will. After an October filled with proving/validation flights and training activities, the new Dreamliner will fly out of United’s Houston (IAH) hub with daily service to San Francisco (SFO), Los Angeles (LAX), Denver (DEN) and Newark (EWR). Six times a week, the new aircraft will fly to Chicago (ORD) with special one-time flights to Washington (IAD) and Cleveland (CLE).In addition to unprecedented operating efficiency, comfort and lower emissions, the Dreamliner has a host of passenger-friendly features too. Passengers will notice 30 percent larger windows and larger overhead storage bins for today’s roll-aboard bags. Improved lighting, cabins pressurized at 6,000 feet rather than the 8,000-foot mark typical for commercial passenger aircraft and higher humidity levels will help with fatigue, headaches and jet lag.

“United now begins a new chapter with the 787 Dreamliner,” said Smisek, “the most technologically advanced commercial jetliner ever built.”

Here is video of that first 787 Dreamliner being rolled out of the paint shop at Boeing late last week:

Want to see inside the new Dreamliner? Go with Gadling’s Zach Honig Inside United’s First 787 Dreamliner At Boeing HQ

Photo- United Airlines

Boeing 787 makes first commerical flight

Our good friend Scott Mayerowitz over at the AP was lucky enough to get a seat on the first commercial 787 Dreamliner flight, and he’s just published an update on the experience. The special flight, which ran between Tokyo and Hong Kong yesterday, played host to a variety of media and airline enthusiasts and is a celebration to kick off widespread service of aircraft on All Nippon Airways. The airline is expected to receive 55 aircraft over the next several years and unroll the equipment out to a variety of medium and long haul routes.

Those hoping to fly on the Dreamliner in the United States will have to wait until the first domestic carrier, United Airlines, receives its equipment in early 2012. That aircraft, which is initially scheduled to fly between Houston and Auckland, just rolled of of the assembly line this month and is currently undergoing testing.

New with this airframe will be improved air conditions, wider windows, larger overhead bin space and a quieter, more efficient experience. Whether or not the airlines can successfully negate these benefits with fees and constraints is yet to be proven.

[flickr image via PYONKO]

Boeing’s 787: Engineering a quieter airplane

It has long been rumored that Boeing‘s new 787 Dreamliner will be the quietest commercial jumbo jet in its class. Take a look at the back of select engine nacelles on the airframe and you can see an obvious difference. That egg crate design is in place for improved acoustic performance, which means a better experience for not only passengers but the people living near airports and flight paths.

Boeing just published a video showing some of the other improvements and the testing that they’re working on. Take a look at the show above.