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updated: 11/2/2012 10:02 AM

United gets 787 certification, sets first comercial flight Sunday

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Chicago-based United Airlines said it has received Federal Aviation Administration certification for its new Boeing 787 Dreamliner, and will begin flying the passenger jet Sunday morning from Houston to O'Hare International Airport.

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United's first Dreamliner arrived in Houston on Sept. 28 to begin a monthlong certification program that included noncommercial flights to several of United's domestic and international stations, totaling more than 100 flight hours. During this time, the aircraft underwent a series of test scenarios, including diversions and simulated mechanical issues, in thorough preparation for service.

"I want to thank my co-workers who worked so carefully and professionally to get United certified to operate the Dreamliner," said United's President and Chief Executive Officer Jeff Smisek. "Many people from across the company put in a lot of work to help us induct and prepare to operate the 787, and I'm proud to share this important day with all of them."

United has received two of the 50 Dreamliners it has on order from Chicago-based Boeing Co. Configured with 36 seats in United BusinessFirst, 70 seats in United Economy Plus and 113 seats in United Economy, the Dreamliner will revolutionize the flying experience for United customers and crews while delivering unprecedented operating efficiency, comfort and lower emissions. Customers will experience greater comfort with improved lighting, bigger windows, larger overhead bins, lower cabin altitude and enhanced ventilation systems, among other passenger-friendly features.

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