Stephen Moynihan, Jetstar’s Manager for Communications in Australia, confirmed this August that his airline will be taking delivery of its first of 14 Boeing 787 Dreamliners in September which will progressively replace its fleet of A330s. The aircraft will operate on Jetstar long haul services to destinations including Thailand, Singapore, Hawaii and Japan.

To support the fleet modernization plan the Qantas Group has taken delivery of a B787 Dreamliner door trainer to help smooth the introduction of the new aircraft into the airline’s fleet. The RP Aero Systems-manufactured door trainer is essentially a replica of the B787 cabin door and includes a small section of fuselage which includes windows and scenes that can be changed depending on the training scenario required. Peter Chase, RP Aero Systems’ New Business Manager, told CAT the trainer consists of a 1L main door with cabin attendant seat, EDW (electronically dimmable window) dimming system, automatically retractable oxygen masks and will be a true representation of the new B787 Dreamliner aircraft. “It includes RP's advanced electronic door hinge and handle control system and out of the window visual system,” Chase added.

The trainer has been designed to be as user friendly as possible with a door auto-close facility, which allows the instructor to automatically reset the door to the closed, handle locked and disarmed condition ready for the next student. Likewise following deployment of the oxygen masks, the instructor can automatically re-stow these by selection on the Instructor's Operation Station touch screen.

“The B787 door observation window is fitted with a new EDW, which allows the view through the observation window to be dimmed and total obscured. This has been replicated on the trainer as some regulators consider this to be an important feature which must be included in crew training,” Chase added.

Moynihan also provided an important insight on how airlines use training and enabling technology to prepare their crews operate new fleet aircraft. For their part, Jetstar’s A330 trained cabin crews who fly internationally will undergo a five-day conversion course to operate on the B787 in accordance with Australian aviation safety regulations. “Cabin crew training will commence shortly ahead of Jetstar taking delivery of its first 787 by the end of September,” Moynihan commented.

The door trainer has been installed at the Qantas Group’s Flight Training Centre in Melbourne. This door trainer is able to be configured for a number of different cabin situations including a rapid descent or an emergency landing.

“RP Aero Systems have a long and successful relationship with the Qantas Group and this brings the total number of trainers supplied to the Qantas to nine, and total orders ( all customers) for the B787 door trainer to seven,” Chase concluded. – Marty Kauchak