North Charleston lands final assembly of 787-10

  • Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Final assembly of the Boeing 787-10, the newest and longest member of the 787 Dreamliner family of airplanes, will take place exclusively in North Charleston.

The announcement was made July 30.

“That Boeing is committing the future of the Dreamliner to our state — the first place, ever, outside of Washington State that Boeing has built a commercial airplane — lets the whole world know that South Carolina workers are the best around. The success that Boeing South Carolina has become in less than five years is a testament to the Boeing leadership and above all, the Boeing employees whose talent and dedication make all of us so proud,” Gov. Nikki Haley said in a statement.

Boeing will continue to assemble both 787-8s and 787-9s in Everett, Wash., and North Charleston. Design of the 787-10 is underway in Everett, with final assembly of the first 787-10 scheduled to begin in South Carolina in 2017.

“We looked at all our options and found the most efficient and effective solution is to build the 787-10 at Boeing South Carolina,” Vice President and General Manager of the 787 program Larry Loftis said in a statement. “This will allow us to balance 787 production across the North Charleston and Everett sites as we increase production rates. We’re happy with our growth and success in South Carolina, and the continued success at both sites gives us confidence in our plan going forward.”

The 787-10 will be 18 feet (5.5 meters) longer than the 787-9. With 10 feet (3 meters) of that increase in the midbody section, the 787-10 midbody is too long to be transported efficiently from North Charleston, according to the company.

The 787 production system includes three production lines: two in Everett (including a temporary surge line) and one in South Carolina. The integrated production system currently operates at a production rate of 10 airplanes per month. As announced last year, the 787 production rate will increase to 12 airplanes per month in 2016 and 14 per month by the end of the decade.

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