Victoria Minister for the Aviation Industry Gordon Rich-Phillips
Dreamliner Pays Melbourne A Flying Visit
Victor P Taffa
Victorians had a first glimpse of the new 787 Dreamliner when Boeing’s ‘next generation’ aircraft touched down at Melbourne Airport today.
Minister for the Aviation Industry Gordon Rich-Phillips joined Jetstar officials to greet the plane on arrival and said the Dreamliner had great significance for Victoria.
Jetstar will be taking delivery of the 787 Dreamliner in 2013 and will be the first airline in Australia to operate the aircraft.
“The Victorian aviation industry is a key supplier to Boeing’s Dreamliner project and we are home to Jetstar soon to be the first local airline to operate the aircraft.” Mr. Rich-Phillips said.
“The Dreamliner is at the cutting edge of aircraft design and our involvement in manufacturing parts for the aircraft is testament to Victoria’s world class aerospace and aviation capabilities.”
With approximately 50 % of the 787’s primary structure made from composites, the Boeing 787 Dreamliner will use 20 % less fuel per passenger than similar sized traditionally constructed aircraft, produce less carbon emissions and have quieter take offs and landings.
Australia is Boeing’s largest operation outside the US and about half of the Australian employees are Victorian-based. Boeing Aerostructures Australia at Fishermans Bend in Melbourne is the sole supplier of the carbon fibre moveable trailing edge of the wing of the Dreamliner.
The technology underpinning this project was also developed in conjunction with the Co-operative Research Centre for Advanced Composite Structures headquartered in Fishermans Bend.
Mr. Rich-Phillips said the Dreamliner project was set to result in major benefits for Victoria via both Boeing and Jetstar.
“Boeing’s Fishermans Bend plant is set to become a designated centre of excellence for composites and Boeing has already invested more than $200 Million and expanded its workforce to gear up for Dreamliner component production.” Mr. Rich-Phillips said.
Mr. Rich-Phillips said Victoria was Australia’s aerospace and aviation centre, with the sectors contributing more than $600 Million annually to the Victorian economy, generating more than $230 Million in exports and directly employing around 22,000 people.
“The Victorian Government recognises the importance of aviation to Victoria’s economic development and is committed to seeing the industry prosper.” Mr. Rich-Phillips said.