Published on Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Hopes dashed of Dreamliner quick return

Fears are growing that the Dreamliner 787 will not be returning to service as quickly as hoped after Japanese and US air safety inspectors found no fault with the battery.

The battery was initially believed to be the problem with 787s owned by two Japanese airlines.

But according to BBC reports, Japan's transport ministry said inspections have now switched their focus to the electrical system that monitors the aircraft's battery voltage, charging and temperature.

The news has dashed hopes of a quick fix for the problem, which has seen all 50 787s in service grounded.

Aviation experts say the latest findings meant it could be difficult to identify the cause and Boeing could be forced to do a major re-design.

Boeing currently has orders for more than 800 Dreamliners. Thomson and British Airways are both major customers for the new aircraft.

Safety investigations started after one of the 787s operated by All Nippon Airways was forced to make an emergency landing when its main battery overheated and a battery in a Japan Airlines 787 caught fire while parked at Boston's Logan International Airport.

by Bev Fearis

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  • B787 Test programme

    The 787, like all new aircraft underwent a very extensive flight test programme prior to issue of its airworthiness cert. One wonders why these problems did not appear during testing, since they have shown themselves so quickly in service.

    By Colin Luke, Wednesday, January 30, 2013

  • This is often the way...

    ...with cutting edge technology, the more so when several thigs are changed at the same time. By being at the forefront of invention Britain suffered from this with the Comet and later the Advanced Passenger Train. Our failure meant that others were able to overtake us in both jet passenger aircraft and tilting train technology. Whereas I do feel a smidgeon of epicaricacy when I read of Boeing's problems, since it was they who benefitted most from the Comet's failure, my rational mind does wish them a speedy resolution to these present difficulties.

    By Richard English, Tuesday, January 29, 2013

  • Dreamliner grounding

    This is tough on Boeing, but still the right course of action. Until the root cause is found, and it could be something relatively easy to fix, the risk of airborne fires cannot be entertained.

    By mike carrivick, Tuesday, January 29, 2013

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