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Originally published September 27, 2011 at 7:14 AM | Page modified September 27, 2011 at 10:35 PM

787 heads for Japan to begin passenger service

The first 787 Dreamliner delivered by Boeing took off early Tuesday for Japan, where All Nippon Airways (ANA) will launch it into passenger service late next month.

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The first 787 Dreamliner delivered by Boeing took off early Tuesday for Japan, where All Nippon Airways (ANA) will launch it into passenger service late next month.

The Dreamliner left Paine Field in Everett at 7:17 a.m. and is expected to make the 4,879-trip to Tokyo in 9 ½ hours.

Ramp workers cheered the takeoff, which was about 45 minutes later than expected. The plane climbed into an overcast sky, tipped its wings and headed west to Japan.

Scheduled to be on the flight is ANA Chief Executive Shinichiro Ito, who told Boeing executives and employees at Monday's delivery ceremony that the airline "will now carefully and lovingly take this plane to Japan ... and send her off to fly in the great wide world."

ANA's first commercial passengers on the 787 will take a special charter from Tokyo to Hong Kong on Oct. 26. Meanwhile, ANA will pick up its second Dreamliner on Oct. 14.

Satoru Fujiki, ANA senior vice president, said this week the airline will take four Dreamliners this year and eight more by the end of March. He said ANA will have all 50 of the 787s it has on order by 2017.

The new jet is the first commercial airliner built using strong, lightweight carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic rather than the typical aluminum skin.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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