Large-aircraft manufacturing managed to avoid severe pain in 2009, says Teal Group analyst Richard Aboulafia, but Boeing Co. could be facing a more trying year ahead. Among the challenges: Cutting 777 production, opening a new factory in South Carolina and responding to a potentially negative ruling from the World Trade Organization. Looming over all else is the 787, which faces a "tough and unpredictable" regimen of flight tests. "Whatever else happens in 2010, it will be counted a successful year for Boeing if Japan's All Nippon Airways gets its first 787 in the fourth quarter," writes Dominic Gates.

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