Boeing 787 Dreamliner: Innovation Gone Wrong?

Case Details Case Introduction 1 Case Introduction 2 Case Excerpts

<< Previous


The Making Of The Boeing 787 'Dreamliner'

On April 26, 2004, Boeing launched the 7E7 Dreamliner Program with a record order for 50 planes from All Nippon Airways (ANA) , the largest launch order for a new Boeing commercial jet. While developing the 7E7 Dreamliner, Boeing applied breakthrough technologies. The distinctive features of the airplane were expected to increase fuel efficiency, simplify operations, and considerably improve the air travel experience.

The twin-aisle, twinjet airplane could fly a range of up to 8,500 nautical miles and had a seating capacity of 217 to 257 in three-class seating. According to Walt Gillette (Gillette), Vice President of Engineering, Manufacturing, and Partner Alignment for the 7E7 Program, “The customer interest, the partner support, and the passenger eagerness for this airplane are great validation that once again we’ve fulfilled the value requirements of a new airplane’s key audiences".....

Operations Case Studies | Case Study in Management, Operations, Strategies, Operations, Case Studies
Operations Case Studies | Case Study in Management, Operations, Strategies, Operations, Case Studies
PayPal (9 USD)

Grounding Of Dreamliner

Since January 2013, the 787 Dreamliner had been beset with problems including issues with its brakes, electrical panel fires, and overheating batteries. In early January 2013, two 787 Dreamliners operated by Japan Airlines faced problems on two consecutive days – the first one caught fire at Boston Logan International Airport after a battery in an auxiliary power system exploded and the second one was reported to have leaked fuel. It was not only Japan Airlines, but also other airlines such as United Airlines and ANA that reported problems with the 787 Dreamliner.......

The Road Ahead

Despite a challenging start due to production delays and battery issues, Boeing continued to develop new versions of its fuel-efficient 787 Dreamliner, the 787-9 and 787-10. The 787-9 could carry 250– 290 passengers on routes of 8,000 to 8,500 nautical miles (14,800 to 15,750 km). The 787-10, launched in June 2013 with 102 orders and commitments from five customers, could carry 300–330 passengers up to 7,000 nautical miles (12,964 km).In May 2013, Boeing began final assembly of the 787-9. On September 18, 2013, the 787-9 made its first flight. While the 787-9 was on track to be delivered to launch customer Air New Zealand in mid-2014, the 787-10 would be delivered to customers in 2018. As of September 2013, Boeing had unfilled orders for 936 Dreamliners, worth about US$217 billion, from 57 customers in six continents of the world. While about 41% of the orders – or 388 planes – were for the 787-9, 50 orders were for the 787-10, and the rest of the orders for the 787-8.....


Exhibit I: Financial Highlights of Boeing: 2008-12
Exhibit II: Key Milestones of the 7E7 Program
Exhibit III: Visionary Design of Boeing 787 Dreamliner
Exhibit IV: Key Suppliers of Boeing787 Dreamliner
Exhibit V: Post-Launch Troubles of Boeing 787 Dreamliner