Boeing's new 787 Dreamliner passenger aircraft has successfully completed its first test flight in the US. The three-hour flight started from Everett, north of Seattle, and the plane landed at Boeing Field, just south of Seattle. The 787 project had been delayed by two-and-a-half years following a series of hitches, including design problems. Boeing has pegged its hopes to the Dreamliner, which promises to be one of the world's most fuel-efficient planes. The two test pilots carried out a number of basic system checks, including testing the landing gear and flaps. "The airplane responded just as we expected," said Randy Neville, one of the pilots. "It was a joy to fly." The Dreamliner will now go into nine months of continuous testing, with six planes flying around the clock. The Dreamliner has attracted some 840 orders from all over the globe, although some have been cancelled because of the delays. Its popularity is partly thanks to its lightweight design. Made of carbon and titanium, it should reduce fuel consumption as well as save on maintenance costs. The design aims to make the plane nimble and able to fly long distances without refuelling.


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