On Monday, Continental Airlines offered
delegates at the 2010 National Business Travel Association (NBTA)
International Convention & Expo a sneak preview of its Boeing 787
aircraft interior. Continental will be the first U.S. carrier to
take delivery of the new 787 Dreamliner beginning next year.
“Continental is excited to unveil the Boeing 787
Dreamliner to some of our best customers,” said Dave
Hilfman, Continental’s senior vice president of worldwide sales.
“The Dreamliner’s unrivaled customer experience and
superior economic performance will change the future of
Benefits of the 787 Dreamliner’s cabin
Lower cabin altitude: Lowering the cabin altitude to 6,000 feet
reduces the adverse physical effects of pressurization on
Increased luggage storage: The overhead
storage bins are some of the largest in the industry, allowing
space for every passenger to fit a standard-size carry-on bag in
the bin above.
More space and freedom:
Architectural design elements such as sweeping arches and
more natural light create a feeling of spaciousness.
Larger windows: The 787 windows are the largest on any of today’s
airplanes (although Airbus claims the windows on the
A350 XWB will be slightly larger), giving passengers a view to the horizon from
any seat on the plane. Rather than pull-down window
shades, electrochromatic shades give passengers the ability to dim
the window and still enjoy the passing terrain.
Simulated cabin sky: The cabin ceiling is illuminated by ambient
LEDs that create a sense of the sky overhead. The flight
crew, able to control the brightness and color of the
cabin sky, can give passengers a sense of daylight when desired or
help passengers rest by simulating a night sky.
Cleaner, less dry cabin air: Innovative air purification systems
maintain cleaner cabin air, and the air system allows for
higher cabin humidity levels to combat the effects of
dryness on passenger comfort levels.
Sound quality: The
787 improvements lower noise both inside and outside the
cabin. Less cabin noise equates to reduced passenger fatigue,
while decreased engine noise creates significantly quieter
takeoffs and landings, improving the experience for
airport communities and employee ground crews.
With expanded range capabilities,
improved fuel efficiency and superior operating
economics, the 787s will allow Continental to target additional
long-haul markets or replace older, less-efficient
widebody aircraft. Constructed mainly of lightweight, carbon-fiber
composite materials, the Dreamliner is aerodynamically
refined to minimize drag and maximize speed. This,
combined with the aircraft’s reduced weight, allows the 787 to fly
farther using 20% less fuel and emitting 20%
less carbon dioxide than similarly sized airplanes.
Continental has firm orders
for 25 Dreamliners with delivery scheduled beginning third quarter 2011. The aircraft will have 228 seats, including 36
of Continental’s new flat-bed BusinessFirst seats
for the best rest on long-distance flights.
Continental plans to begin nonstop Boeing 787 flights to Auckland,
New Zealand, and Lagos, Nigeria, from its Houston hub.
Both routes are expected to start in November 2011 and are subject to government approval.
“The 787 is an integral part
of our international growth strategy,” said Greg Hart,
Continental’s vice president of network strategy. “This next
generation of aircraft positions Continental for new
long-haul business opportunities - Auckland and Lagos are two great
examples of global markets the 787 will enable us to
Following the display at the 2010 NBTA International
Convention & Expo, Continental will exhibit the 787
mock-up fuselage at its Houston hub in Bush Intercontinental
Airport’s Terminal E.
See other recent news regarding: