"Boeing 787 Type Certification "
J. Randolph Babbitt, Seattle, WA
August 26, 2011

Boeing 787 Type Certification

Remarks as Prepared for Delivery

Thank you, Jim (Albaugh) for that kind introduction.  It’s great to be here on this momentous occasion.  And it truly is momentous – not just for Boeing and the FAA, but also for the economy, and for the global aviation system. 

I want to begin by saying how very proud I am of the FAA team’s role in making this day possible.  Since the 787 first flew in December 2009, the six flight test aircraft have accumulated 4,645 hours.  FAA flight test crews flew 25% of those hours.  

The FAA also logged 200,000 hours of technical work in the 787 type certification project.  And our Transport Airplane Directorate developed 15 special conditions – essentially new design regulations to address innovations that existing rules don’t fully cover. 

I want to thank the FAA team for your hard work and dedication to this project. This is another example of the professionalism of our fine work force.

The Boeing 787 Dreamliner is an incredible technological achievement—one that sets a new standard for innovation on many levels. 

The 787 is the world’s first major airliner to make such extensive use of composite materials – over 50% by weight.  This technology results in an airplane that will fly as fast as today’s speediest wide body aircraft, while using 20 percent less fuel than airplanes of similar size.  The use of composite materials, engine technology advancements, and changes in systems architecture will also reduce noise. 

And here’s another important advance:  the 787 Dreamliner was designed to incorporate many of the capabilities that are foundational to our Next Generation Air Transportation System – NextGen.  NextGen is the fundamental transformation of our entire system, and the 787 is paving the way to how aviation will operate in the future.  Some of the Dreamliner’s NextGen features include:

  • Improved situational awareness with the electronic flight bag and dual Heads Up Display (HUD). 
  •  Communication capability that will support greater use of digital communication versus voice. 
  • Advanced navigation capabilities that are fully integrated with the flight management system. 

At the outset of this program, the FAA and Boeing developed a new way of working together.  Rather than wait for issues to arise, we started out by working collaboratively—and proactively—to identify certification issues expected to arise from some of the 787’s novel design features.  With this high level of technological innovation, it was not possible to anticipate everything.  But, we had a plan for working issues to a resolution that would ensure the result we always want:  a safe and compliant aircraft. 

And that brings me to the reason we are here today.  It is my privilege and pleasure first to present the FAA type certificate. 

And now I am delighted to present the FAA production certificate for the Boeing 787 Dreamliner.  

Congratulations to Boeing, to the FAA team, and to every person and organization here today who had a role in the creation of this magnificent machine.  I thank you for the opportunity to be part of this important day for aviation.