4 Jan 2014

Dreamliner to undergo hot weather testing in Australia

11:53 am on 4 January 2014

A new Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft is due in central Australia next week for hot weather testing.

The ABC reports Boeing chosen Alice Springs airport in the Northern Territory because the location meets specific requirements for both facilities and atmospheric conditions.

Daytime temperatures there have hovered around the 40 degree Celsius mark for the past week, but are forecast to return to about 36C next week.

Boeing spokesman Adam Tischler said the tests need temperatures of more than 38C for specific analysis to be done, so the project may have to be extended.

"We do not know how long the airplane will be there specifically because of weather conditions," he said.

"Ideally, we would take about a week to do the testing but ... we will need to get certain temperatures and we need to make sure that the testing goes as planned within those temperature parameters."

The ABC reports the 787-9 is a stretch version of the 787-8, which is now in service in Australia with Jetstar.

The new aircraft can carry more passengers and fly longer distances between refuelling.

The plane is expected to arrive at Alice Springs on Monday, following its world launch at Auckland on Sunday.

The ABC reports the first commercial flight of a new 787-9 is expected to be made in Air New Zealand livery.

The flight is scheduled for 15 October from Auckland to Perth in Western Australia.