Now, KING 5 News has learned that the first flight test to verify the system is expected to take off from Everett's Paine Field on Tuesday, followed by an official flight test for the FAA to demonstrate the system's performance.
The airplane being used for flight testing is built for LOT Polish Airlines, which as the first operator of the Dreamliner in Europe. LOT was hoping the plane would lead the carrier into a position of profitability.
LOT suffered embarrassment at Chicago's O'Hare airport on the night of the grounding as the airline was celebrating the start of Dreamliner service between Chicago and Warsaw. The inbound 787 from Warsaw never made the return flight and is still stuck at the airport two months later. The carrier says it's using leased Boeing 767s in the meantime.
Boeing says it plans to wrap up ground and flight tests by no later than the end of March, and then it's up to the FAA to certify the plane is again safe to fly, or request further changes and testing.
"I think by June we should be in good shape," said Michel Merluzeau, the managing partner and analyst for G2 Solutions in Kirkland.