787 Dreamliners grounded in January over battery fires
Boeing would need FAA approval of any proposed fix
Source says Boeing has multi-point plan for addressing potential battery problems
Boeing has several hundred Dreamliners on order globally, only 50 in service
Boeing will present a temporary plan to U.S. aviation safety officials this week aimed at getting its grounded 787 Dreamliners back in service.
The multi-point proposal for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) would address several potential causes of problems related to lithium-ion batteries, a congressional source with knowledge of Boeing’s plans told CNN.
The batteries are at the center of safety investigations in the United States and Japan of fires aboard two 787s that led to FAA action triggering the grounding of the fleet globally in January.
The Dreamliner is the newest and most technologically advanced aircraft on the market. There are only 50 in service, mostly overseas. But Boeing has orders for several hundred.
Lithium-ion batteries that help start the plane’s engines and deliver auxiliary power to other systems burned In two separate instances last month.
One incident occurred on an empty Japan Airlines 787 on the ground in Boston when the battery exploded and caught fire. The other took place on a All Nippon Airways 787 flying in Japan a few days later. The plane made a safe emergency landing after smoke was detected on board.
The FAA and Boeing would not comment the manufacturer’s proposed fix.
“Everyone is working to get to the answer as quickly as possible and good progress is being made,” Boeing spokesman Marc Birtel told CNN.
Dreamliners operate more systems with electricity than any other aircraft. Boeing needed special permission from regulators to use the more powerful lithium ion batteries.