Pre-Delivery and Test Flight of a B777

MUKILTEO, WA – On Tuesday of this week, our Aircraft Programs team did a customer walk on the B777-300ER (C-FKAU, FIN 749) Air Canada is receiving next week. Our team consists of various managers, mechanics, and engineers. The customer walk is an important step because it is basically a final inspection of the aircraft before delivery.

Air Canada and Boeing inspected the aircraft for the day and looked for snags and other issues on the airplane. We had to put a piece of red tape when we snagged something on the plane. We tested the mechanical characteristics of the seats, such as recline, headrest, armrest, and tray table. The team also tested the flight attendant call button and reading light from every seats. Over 400 seats were inspected during the day!

(Photo Credits: Jen Schuld)

Our Boeing 777-300ER landing at Paine Field after a successful test flight on May 18. (Photo Credits: Jennifer Schuld)

Test Flight (C1)

The next morning, I was aboard the customer test flight (C1) of the aircraft. It is the second test flight of the plane since it was built. The flight lasted around 2h45 with a touch-and-go and a go-around at Moses Lake (KMWH). The aircraft headed West of the state of Washington after takeoff from Paine Field. The Boeing 777 then followed the shoreline to the South before taking a left turn towards the East. At our cruising altitude of 39,000 feet, the pilots performed several tests on the aircraft.

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Flight path of the  aircraft via FlightRadar24.

Go-around at Moses Lake.

Go-around at Moses Lake.

Some of the tests included the extension of the flaps and the slats close to cruising altitude. The spoilers (speed brakes) were also deployed for a short period of time.

Extension of the flaps.

Extension of the flaps.

Extension of the spoilers.

Extension of the spoilers.

The landing gear was also extended during the flight. The cabin started to shake when the gear was deployed because the aircraft was flying in cruise phase at a higher speed than usual when the aircraft is about to normally land at a lower speed. The gear is the part of the aircraft that creates the most drag.

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Flying over the mountains in the beautiful state of Washington.

The flight crew decompressed the cabin at an altitude of 39,000 feet with a feeling for the passengers that the cabin was pressured at 11,000, 12,000, and 13,000 feet. The cabin is usually pressurized at 8,000 feet for the comfort of the passengers. At lower cabin pressure altitudes, passengers will feel better and rested after a long flight. The Boeing 787 is pressurized at 6,000 feet, which is an improvement from the current generation of aircraft.

Blue skies!

Blue skies ahead!

Flight deck of the Boeing 777-300ER (77W).

Flight deck of the Boeing 777-300ER during flight.

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Flight line of Boeing 787s at Boeing Everett Factory.

I am now heading back home to Eastern Canada for the long weekend (Victoria Day). I am not working on Monday since our office is closed for the Holiday! Next Tuesday, I am leaving the Aircraft Programs team and I will be joining the Network Planning group for the rest of the summer. During my trip, I had the opportunity to tour one-on-one the Boeing Everett Factory! Stay tuned for an overview of the factory tour as well as my first few days in the Network Planning department.

Nicolas


Contact the author at berniern@my.erau.edu

Short Trip to Seattle

This week, I am in the Seattle/Tacoma area from Monday to Thursday. I will be joining the Aircraft Programs team for the inspection of our 19th and last Boeing 777 to be delivered from Everett, Washington next week. It was the first time I was flying as a non-revenue passenger.

Beautiful sunset over the SeaTac area.

Beautiful sunset over the SeaTac area.

One of the perk of working as a summer intern for an airline are the travel privileges. Some airlines allow you to fly on standby on all of their flights if seats are available. Employees only have to pay taxes and other related fees. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to discover Air Canada’s network this summer since the air carrier requires its employees to work for six months before being granted flight benefits.

My first flight was from Montreal to Toronto. I then flew from Toronto to Seattle.  I was upgraded on both of my flights! For the short 53-minute flight to Toronto, I was flying on an Airbus A330 featuring fully lie-flat beds. The aircraft was completely empty. Only 10 of the 37 upfront premium seats were occupied. On the second flight I was onboard an Embraer 190, the smallest mainline aircraft in our fleet.

Cheese plate and nuts offered in Business Class from Montreal to Toronto.

Cheese plate and nuts offered in Business Class from Montreal to Toronto.

Chicken or pasta was served as the main course on the flight to Seattle.

Chicken or pasta was served as the main course on the flight to Seattle.

Paine Field is where I will spend the next couple of days. The airport is home of Boeing where it completes the assembly of the 747s, 767s, 777s, and 787s aircraft. The Boeing 737 family of aircraft is made in Renton, WA. Our team will be inspecting the aircraft because it wants to makes sure everything works well on the aircraft before delivery. I will write a story about this exciting trip very soon.

Until next time!

Nicolas


Contact the author at berniern@my.erau.edu

Summer Plans

Finals are now over for Embry-Riddle students! For some, it’s finally summer and it is time to rest and relax. For others, jobs and internships are starting in the following weeks.

In my last blog, I mentioned that I would be flying on Delta’s first Airbus A321 flight on May 2. However, the airline made a last minute equipment change and postponed the inaugural  flight. I therefore cancelled my trip to Atlanta on that day.

Last week, my friend flew down from Canada and visited me in Daytona Beach. We enjoyed the beach and warm weather before leaving Florida on Saturday to drive my car up to Canada. The drive from Daytona to Montreal is about 1,400 miles and two days of driving. The first day, we drove close to 1,000 miles and stopped for the night close to Philadelphia. The second day, we drove about seven hours to see my brother in Boston. The next day, we drove the last five hours to Canada. I was exhausted after arriving home in the late afternoon!

Photo Credits: Air Canada

Photo Credits: Air Canada

Now I barely have time to rest since I am starting a summer internship at Air Canada in Network Planning on Wednesday of this week. For the first two weeks of the internship, I will be working with the Aircraft Programs team. It is the department that buys and leases aircraft for Air Canada. After that, I will be spending the rest of my internship in Network Planning. Stay tuned all summer to learn more about my internship!

I hope everyone enjoys their summer!

Nicolas


Contact the author at berniern@y.erau.edu

Exploring the West

As my last adventure of the Spring semester, I had the privilege of traveling out west with the Admissions team. Our itinerary included Denver, Los Angeles, and Seattle during the course of five days. Needless to say, it was a lot of time spent in an airplane.

The beginning of our trip didn’t start out as planned, since our flight out of Daytona to Atlanta was delayed for three hours. After rebooking our flight twice, we finally made it to Denver with just a few hours to spare before the event. As an ERAU student, naturally I was excited to go to Denver International Airport, since there are so many conspiracies surrounding it. I was surprised when we landed to see that there was still snow on the ground! After admiring the snow and the Rocky Mountains, we got to the restaurant where we were going to be hosting our dinner event. A lot of families showed up, and I was able to talk with them about ERAU Daytona Beach Campus.

After a successful event in Denver, it was off to Los Angeles! We woke up very early in the morning to catch a flight to Salt Lake City, where we would be making our connection. I had never flown into SLC during the daylight hours, so I enjoyed the views of the mountains, and the lake.

Approach into SLC at sunrise

Once we made it to LA, we hit the ground running. After all, what else are you supposed to do when you have an entire free day in Los Angeles? First stop: In-N-Out Burger. A California classic. This restaurant was conveniently located at the end of one of the runways at LAX. So, we enjoyed plane-spotting while drinking our milkshakes. You could definitely tell we were from Embry-Riddle, since we oohed and ahhed when the 777s and 787s came in for landing. Once we got our burger fix, we headed out to explore the city, after a quick check-in to our hotel, of course.

Our first tourist destination was the Hollywood Sign. We drove up into the hills and took pictures of it in the distance from the Griffith Observatory. Somehow, we also managed to get into the Griffith Observatory to look around for a bit. We didn’t have much time to spare though, since our next stop was a tour at the Warner Brothers Studios. I had been to Los Angeles a couple times before, but had never done the tour before, so I was quite excited! Once we arrived at the Studios in Burbank, we were greeted with the bustling of television production. The tour lasted a couple hours, and we got to see Harry Potter costumes, sound stages where Pretty Little Liars, Friends, and the Big Bang Theory were filmed, as well as many other awesome things! Once the tour was over, we drove out to Santa Monica to visit the famous pier. Little did we know that there were severe wind advisories for that area! We were freezing! However, a little wind didn’t stop us. We ate at a restaurant on the pier and watched the sunset. It was the perfect end to a busy day, or so we thought. On the way back towards our hotel in downtown, we decided that we couldn’t leave LA without driving down Hollywood Boulevard. We got to see the stars on the sidewalks, the famous theaters, and Jimmy Kimmel Live’s studio!

View of the Hollywood Sign from the Griffith Observatory

Sitting on the Friends couch

Santa Monica Pier

Obviously, we maximized our free time in Los Angeles. The next day, we walked to the restaurant where we were hosting the luncheon. Our hotel was across from the Staples Center, so we also got to take some pictures of it while we were passing through. The event was very successful, and once again, I got to speak with many families about Embry-Riddle! It has turned into one of my passions. I love to see the excitement on students’ faces when they talk about attending ERAU.

Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles

After LA, we headed to our final destination, which was Seattle! I was excited to be back in my hometown, even if it was just for a day. Our hotel was in Pioneer Square, which is one of the most historic districts of Seattle. We were hungry after a long evening of travel, so we found the oldest bar in Seattle. However, we had to sit outside to eat, since I am not yet 21. The burgers were to die for, and our server was hilarious. It was around 50 degrees while we were eating, but it was definitely worth it. The next day, the event in Seattle was another luncheon. It was a smaller crowd, and it was special to me since my family was in attendance. My younger sister is going to be attending Embry-Riddle in August!

Once the event was over, my family joined us, and we all went to Pike Place Market and the Gum Wall. Thankfully it stopped raining just in time! We bought flowers, went to Beecher’s, and bought salmon from the famous Pike Place Fish Market. After a nice lunch on the pier, the ERAU Admissions team went to explore Seattle. We visited the Space Needle, of course. I also took them to see a lesser known tourist attraction: the Fremont Troll. It is a big troll that was sculpted underneath the bridge between Seattle and Fremont.

Approach into SEA over downtown

My sister and I at the Gum Wall

By that time, we were all exhausted just in time for our red eye flight back to Daytona! The entire trip was filled with laughter and good conversations. I enjoyed meeting some members of the ERAU Class of 2020! Now that the trip is over, I am looking forward to the next West Coast trip next year!

Until next time,

Lindsey

Flying high over WA State

Over the past two weeks, I have been spending a lot of time in the air. Although I’m not a pilot, I will never skip a chance to go flying. One of the best experiences I’ve ever had flying happened just two weeks ago.

Because Alaska Airlines operates over half of the flights at Sea-Tac International Airport, the two businesses have a close relationship. I’m thankful for this because Alaska Airlines took all of the interns (Port of Seattle, Alaska Airlines, and Horizon Airlines) on a delivery flight! Most people in the aviation industry never have the chance to go on a delivery flight of an aircraft, so I am very grateful I had the opportunity to.

The day started off at Alaska Airlines Headquarters, right across the road from Sea-Tac. We got to see all around the corporate building, then we got on a bus to head over to the Boeing 737 factory in Renton, WA. Boeing doesn’t offer public tours of the Renton factory, so it was pretty awesome to get to see inside. Unfortunately, we weren’t allowed to take photos, so I don’t have any to share with you all. After the tour, we headed over to the Museum of Flight at Boeing Field in Seattle. It is one of the best flight museums in the country. My favorite part is the 787 Dreamliner and Air Force 1 that they have on display for people to walk through outside. Have any of you ever been inside a 787? They’re huge!

Hanging out at Alaska Airlines Headquarters

Hanging out at Alaska Airlines Headquarters

A quote I love at the Museum of Flight

A quote I love at the Museum of Flight

After we were all toured out, we got on the bus and headed over to the Boeing Delivery Center building at Boeing Field. From there, we were able to go out on the ramp and meet our ride for the next hour. It was a brand new Boeing 737-900ER. We were able to take pictures in front of the aircraft, in the engines, as well as inside of the landing gear! It was amazing to see all of the wiring that goes into just the landing gear.

New Alaska Airlines Boeing 737-900ER

New Alaska Airlines Boeing 737-900ER

The wiring for the landing gear!

The wiring for the landing gear!

Sitting in the engine

Sitting in the engine

Once we had taken all the pictures we could, we boarded the aircraft. Just like new cars, it had that “new airplane” smell. We were able to sit wherever we wanted and roam about the cabin. Our flight route was leaving from Boeing Field, flying over the Cascade Mountain Range, and then looping back to Paine Field in Everett, were there are more Boeing factories.

Port of Seattle interns on the flight

Port of Seattle interns on the flight

During the flight, we were able to ride jump seat and talk to the pilots. Boeing also gave out gift bags with goodies and a full meal. It was awesome! We even played trivia over the speaker inside the aircraft. It was such a long, aviation-filled day, but I will remember it for a lifetime. I hope everyone gets the chance to go on a delivery flight, because you truly get to appreciate all of the work that goes into creating a brand new aircraft.

Up in the flight deck

Up in the flight deck

Now I mentioned I’ve been doing a lot of flying lately. I also was able to go on a few GA flights over the past few weeks. The first, we just did a few loops around my town and over the lake where I live. It’s crazy how different things look from the air!

The second GA flight I went on was incredible. We took a 172 up to Seattle and did a scenic waterfront flight. Normally, if anyone wanted to go on a Seattle flight, it would cost hundreds of dollars per person. However, the beauty of knowing pilots is that you get that whole experience and more, for a lot less! We flew north over Tacoma, the Puget Sound, around and under the Bravo airspace at Sea-Tac, and up to Seattle. It was so pretty, especially because we went at sunset. Seattle is one of the most beautiful cities in the country, and its even better from the air! We couldn’t get enough in just one fly-by, so we looped around for about 30 minutes, taking pictures and admiring the city from above.

Seattle waterfront from above

Seattle waterfront from above

Just a few friends in a 172

Just a few friends in a 172

Seattle, Washington

Seattle, Washington

 

A few years ago, I never would’ve thought I would be where I am today. I mean a delivery flight?! That’s a dream come true. Then flying over Seattle with some of my best friends, I never would’ve guessed. When I get to reflect back on all of the amazing aviation experiences I have had, I feel so blessed to be attending ERAU, where I’m making my dreams come true one by one. It is incredible all of the opportunities Riddle has given me, just in my first year. I cannot wait for the aviation-filled years to come!

Until next time,

Lindsey

R&R

By the time finals week rolled around here at ERAU, the library became completely packed, Starbucks was busy at all hours of the day (and night), and all of us students were eagerly packing our bags for our journeys home for the holidays. After all of the stress of finals week, our Fall 2014 Semester was finally complete and we were free to relax for a few weeks. I spent my break at my home in Lake Tapps, WA with my family and friends. Although it was filled with rest and relaxation, I also kept a somewhat busy schedule…

Before I left Florida, it only felt fitting to go to Walt Disney World one last time. I went with my boyfriend and we enjoyed looking at all of the spectacular holiday decorations Disney puts up. We also took time to ride a few rides (although it was very busy), visit Minnie and Mickey, watch the Electrical Parade, and end our night with the fireworks show.

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Once I finally got back to the Evergreen State, I was greeted with cool, crisp air the minute I walked out of the airport. As I got used to the cold over the next week, I had the chance to go to my first NBA game, which was the Portland Trail Blazers versus the San Antonio Spurs at the Moda Center in Portland, OR. It was a really cool experience getting to actually go to a game. I also went to The Nutcracker Ballet in Seattle, as well as a Michael W. Smith Christmas Concert with my family. My friends and I spent one night driving around Seattle to find the best Christmas light decorations around. We definitely found some over-the-top decorations. 

Our view at the NBA game.

Our view at the NBA game.

The curtain at The Nutcracker.

The curtain at The Nutcracker.

The week before Christmas was spent baking cookies, wrapping presents, having the annual gingerbread house competition, and watching Christmas movies with my family. It really is the best time of the year!

David and I's entry in the Gingerbread House Competition. We definitely won!

David and I’s entry in the Gingerbread House Competition. We definitely won!

Although we did not have a White Christmas at my house like I was hoping for, we did manage to get some snow in the Cascade Mountain Range with just enough time left for me to go skiing before I departed for the Sunshine State once again.

My dad, younger sister, boyfriend, and two other friends all went up to Crystal Mountain Ski Resort one day, and we had an amazing time. The mountain had just got over 20 inches of snow that weekend, so the snow conditions were wonderful! What wasn’t so wonderful was the weather… After a few runs on the small hill, we decided to head up the chairlift to the Summit. That day it was 7 degrees and very windy, however we did manage to make it a great day full of skiing.

David, myself, and Brian waiting to ride the Gondola to the Summit at Crystal Mountain.

David, myself, and Brian waiting to ride the Gondola to the Summit at Crystal Mountain.

The drive to Crystal Mountain.

The drive to Crystal Mountain.

All in all, I would call my break a success. It was full of rest and relaxation, family time, and adventures. Now that I am back at ERAU, I do miss the feeling of being stress-free and spending time with my family and friends, but I am also ready to see what this semester has in store for me!

Until next time,

Lindsey

It’s a Slow Season…

The last few weeks have been not quite as busy as before. Now that the Summer Games and USA Games have ended, things are really starting to breathe around the office until fall sports begin.

Last week, I celebrated my 21st birthday in Seattle, WA. I had a TON of fun and got to do a lot of exploring around. Seattle is definitely looking like a hopeful place to start a career post graduation. I even got to visit the Amazon Headquarters and see a snippet of how things work.

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At the Seattle Sea Wall near the Seattle Aquarium. It was such a beautiful day to be outside and enjoy all to offer!

A view of the Seattle Space Needle from the top of the Amazon Headquarters building.

A view of the Seattle Space Needle from the top of the Amazon Headquarters building.

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My cake from some heavenly bakery in Seattle. Chocolate with cherry filling. I’m pretty sure I had a slice every night until it was gone.

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The conclusion of Seattle’s Pride Week – Pridefest at the Seattle Center. We saw a couple get married, a bunch of crazy costumes, and other things that are better left unsaid. I also got my first “Seattle-Dog”, the best darn hotdog I’ve ever had!

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Got to be the guest volunteer for ComedySportz Seattle. I never knew I was so good at improve comedy.

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I couldn’t let the time go without showing my letters on the Puget Sound. Tri Sigma, Faithful Unto Death!

Since it has been a pretty slow week at SOKS (Special Olympics Kansas) and not much really going on, you can always check SOKS on Facebook (facebook.com/specialolympicskansas) for any upcoming events or just some good reads.

Saying Good-bye to Seattle – for now

Last week and a half in Washington State! Next Thursday is my last day here at Boeing. It’s a bittersweet moment. I’m very excited to get back to my life at Riddle in Florida, but I will definitely miss all the great people I have met this summer. Although I must admit that these past 13 weeks have gone by painfully slow at times, I really did enjoy myself here and I’m forever grateful at all of the opportunities I’ve been given this summer.

Enough with the cheesiness, let’s get to the fun stuff! July seems to be one of the busiest months in Seattle. There are a lot of events going on in the area every single weekend! Nathalie, another ERAU student, and I decided to take a trip to DragonFest—a chinese food festival in the heart of Seattle’s international district. Lots of great food at really great prices! We even got roses from a Buddhist monk booth!

DragonFest!

It was a very nice touch 🙂

As part of the Propulsion Systems Division’s internship program, they hold an annual intern competition. This year: build a glider out of balsa wood. Very EGR-101, might I add…if you don’t know what I’m talking about, refer to one of my first blogs here where I talk about my freshman-year glider for the class (wow I’m old!). Needless to say…this time around, things didn’t go as we planned. It took a very long time to carve out the thing! And to perfect it? Yep, lots of blisters and cuts ensued…My team and I ended up getting 4th place…which isn’t too shabby I suppose.

Anyways, remember how I said ERAU alumni stick together? Well I keep getting proved right! Jose, who is a shipside support manager for the 787 Dreamliner, has welcomed us all with open hands! He gave us a tour of the Dreamliner assembly line (we even got to see the first -9!) Thanks to him, I even got to job shadow a Dreamliner liaison engineer one day. I had a lot of fun.

The weekend after that, my dad came to visit. He is a huge aviation fanatic (although he is not in the industry). Sadly, he was only here for a few hours, but we got to go to the Flying Heritage collection here in Everett, where they have military airplanes and tanks on display. We even got to see a V-2 rocket!

P-51 Mustang from the Flying Heritage Collection

Alas, but the weekend wasn’t over! The rest of the weekend, I spent it actually exploring Seattle. We visited the space needle, the EMP museum, the science center, the museum of flight at Boeing Field and the aquarium. And that’s not even a shadow of what the city has to offer!

Dalek (from Doctor Who) at the EMP museum

Blue Angels!

The last flying DC-2 in the world

Pike’s Place Market – the infamous wall of gum

In just 10 days, though, I will be making my way back to Florida. I’m really excited about all the changes coming to Riddle! I heard the new observatory went up on the College of Arts and Sciences, and that Daytona Beach has a new roller coaster! It always amazes me how many things can change in a span of just a few months.

Another really neat thing going on is that campus has gone tobacco-free, effective Aug. 1 2013. I think it’s a really great thing, and very progressive of ERAU to be doing that. A lot of big-name companies out there like Boeing are doing the same thing! Boeing has been a tobacco-free workplace for some time now, and from what my coworkers tell me, it makes a huge difference not only in health, but as a courtesy to others and overall employee well-being. It will be really nice to be able to walk around and not have to gasp a cloud of second-hand smoke while walking to the library. The University will be offering workshops for those students who want to quit smoking as well. Way to go ERAU!

Bye for now Seattle!

If it ain’t Boeing, I ain’t going!

First real day on the job. The nerves start kicking in. What if I don’t know what to do? What if none of my co-workers like me?

Making new friends with the other Boeing interns

I met up with a fellow intern and rode into the Boeing Everett facility. I must say, my office is the most complicated place to find! But alas, I make my way into the area… at a very early 7 am (something I’m not very used to!). I met up with a lady from Human Resources, who showed me the way to my cubicle. With nobody there, I ask the person that sits behind me. Apparently, there was a mix up and they weren’t expecting me until a few weeks later! But all is good, as I get my laptop, keys and miscellaneous items.

A few hours later, my manager comes. Immediately, however, everybody goes out of their way to help me settle in. I work the traditional 8-hour day, but since everybody at the Everett plant seems to get to work super early (including me), I am out of the office by 3:30 pm every day! Kind of nice to have an afternoon off, and not have to go home straight to bed! That week, I do all my required training. And then…the weekend!

Of course…the weekend. Would be pretty nice, except for the fact that I am alone in my apartment until my roommates come! 🙂

It was rather uneventful, but I get all settled in and make last minute purchases for the apartment. I must say, the area isn’t the nicest, but I love my apartment!

Space Needle

The following week, I am given tours galore by some of my co-workers. We make our way to the Propulsion Systems facility, where all the Boeing engine components are added to the aircraft engines. Then, we make our way to the cream of the crop: the main factory, where almost all of the Boeing airplanes are built: the 767, 777 and 787. It’s one thing to say that this building is huge…but trust me once you walk in there, it’s HUGE. It’s incredible how much the concept of a moving assembly line has evolved from the days of Ford. I wish I had pictures to share…but alas no cameras allowed anywhere on Boeing property! You’ll have to come yourself and take the guided tour!

At the end of week two: woo the first roommates start to arrive! That second weekend, her and some of her fellow classmates from Puerto Rico (also interns) and I went to watch a Baseball game. It was some Texas team against the Seattle Mariners. My first ball game! It was quite interesting…but the Mariners won! Go team!

Go Mariners!

Well, that is all I have for now. More adventures to follow in a few weeks, so I’ll be sure to keep you updated! Also—if you have any questions about life at Riddle, hit me up by email at: osegueda@my.erau.edu. Or if you just need some advice about the many opportunities ERAU’s Career Services Office, be sure to check out their website for more information. Until then, “if it ain’t Boeing I ain’t going!”