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Ready to Fly

What's new at United

UNITED’S NEW 787 DREAMLINER encompasses the latest, most advanced technology in the skies. And, according to United’s 787 Fleet Standards senior manager, Captain Dave Lundy, that’s precisely why United pilots are excited to get behind the controls.

More than 60 of United’s most experienced pilots have completed 787 training. Despite the 787 cockpit’s commonality with other aircraft cockpits, pilots must complete extensive preparation and training before taking control of a 787. Preparing pilots to fly the Dreamliner—a process known as “type rating”—is one of the many steps United is taking to integrate the 787 into the fleet.

That work started more than two years ago, when instructors and evaluators began 787 training with Boeing. That initial cadre of check airmen then prepared the manuals and training materials needed to complete the type-rating process for additional united pilots.

For Boeing 777 pilots, there are 12 days of computer-based training and lectures, as well as flying in full-flight simulators. For pilots not type-rated on the 777, the training to receive a 787 type rating takes 23 days. Later, pilots spend time flying the aircraft with a check airman before being cleared to fly.

On your next 787 flight, be assured that you’ll be in the world’s most advanced airplane with some of the airline’s most experienced aviators at the wheel.


With Captain Mike Bowers

Q: Why does the back of the 787 engine have a scalloped design?

A: The scalloped design is just one of the innovations built into the Dreamliner. While the 787 has many unique features to make your flight more enjoyable—including a more comfortable level of pressurization and humidity, a more spacious cabin with larger windows, and turbulence-suppression systems to give a smoother ride—it also benefits those who are not on the plane by producing less noise than other aircraft.

Typical turbofan engines have two exhausts. One comes from the core of the engine and is very fast. The second comes from the fan blades in the front of the engine, bypassing the engine core, and is not nearly as fast as the first. The meeting of the two exhausts at different speeds behind the engine creates noise. By blending the two exhausts, the 787’s scallops help reduce the associated noise.

Do you have a question for Captain Bowers? Write him at askthepilot@united.com.

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