Boeing to propose quick fix for 787 Dreamliners
Sunday, February 17, 2013
Boeing will propose to regulators, perhaps this week, a short-term fix to bolster the 787 Dreamliner’s defenses in case of battery fires such as those that have kept the jet grounded the past month.
The interim fix includes a heavy-duty titanium or steel containment box around the battery cells, and high-pressure evacuation tubes that, in the event of a battery fire, would vent any gases directly to the outside of the jet.
Boeing’s approach implies that four weeks after two batteries overheated, investigators have still not pinpointed the cause.
Even if the FAA agrees, the short-term fix will take at least three months to design, test, certify and retrofit, said a source who knows details of Boeing’s proposed solutions.
That would mean the earliest the Dreamliners could fly passengers again would be May.