Japanese Airlines Ground All Boeing 787 Dreamliners
January 16, 2013 9:19 AM
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ANA and Japan Airlines ground all 24 787 aircraft
Boeing's 787 Dreamliner has
suffered multiple problems across the aircraft fleet
this month. Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner got another ding on its record yesterday when an All Nippon Airways (ANA) aircraft had to make an emergency landing.
What is known about the emergency landing is that the cockpit display showed that the aircraft was having battery problems. Presumably, after the battery fire in Boston, pilots were taking no chances and landed the aircraft as soon as possible.
The batteries in these aircraft are especially important because the 787 Dreamliner fleet uses electrical systems rather than hydraulic systems found on most passenger aircraft.
All Nippon Airways 787 after emergency landing.
[Image Source: Kyodo News]
After these issues, all 24 of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft operated in Japan by ANA and Japan Airlines have been grounded for safety checks. ANA owns 17 of the 24 aircraft with Japan Airlines owning the remainder. These 24 aircraft are nearly half of the 50 787 Dreamliners that have been delivered and flown commercially around the world.
In response to the issues with the aircraft, the FAA has launched a comprehensive safety review of 787 Dreamliner’s critical systems. This review will include an evaluation of how Boeing designs, manufacturers, and assembles the aircraft. Boeing has pledged to fully participate in review stating that it believes the process would bolster public confidence in the aircraft.
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RE: Lithium Ion Batteries?
1/16/2013 10:43:09 AM
according to an article i just read on the german Spiegel news site, the FAA did not actually grant a regular certification to the 787. they gave it a special certification, which includes statements as to there being no adequate safety standards for the lithium ion batteries that the 787 uses, and that all other industries involved with lithium ion batteries (from cellphone makers to car manufacturers) have experienced safety problems involving the batteries.
the site also mentions that there were two fires on 787s in the rear electrical system in 2012.
the site says the FAA are currently looking at options; they might ground the whole fleet until safety tests can be carried out, and in an extreme case, boeing might have to redesign the whole plane. only redesigning the electrical system is not an option, as it is an integral part of the design, replacing many conventional systems with more efficient electrical ones.
i find it strange that the FAA would state in its own papers that the system is unsafe, yet still grant the plane a certification. maybe someone from boeing accidentally left a suitcase full of money in someone's office... ? wouldn't be the first time (remember philip condit?)
RE: Lithium Ion Batteries?
1/17/2013 9:49:10 AM
Considering there's, what, only 50 planes delivered to date? The FAA obviously skimped on its certification to ensure Boeing could get to market before it was possible to properly certify it without special treatment. Sounds like there is a conflict of interest at the FAA or undue political pressure being applied...
RE: Lithium Ion Batteries?
1/17/2013 3:40:29 PM
Your quote seems to indicate that the FAA did not feel that it had enough benchmarks to know if the batteries were safe or not. As a result, they issued the most specific and accurate certification they legally could.
Now, there is evidence which implies there may be an issue with the battery, so the FAA is investigating, just like the certification indicated/implied.
I do not see anything immoral here, the plans fly, no one has been hurt, and the FAA has done what was required by law.
"Well, there may be a reason why they call them 'Mac' trucks! Windows machines will not be trucks." -- Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer
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