After the FAA decided to ground all Boeing 787 Dreamliners last month, a massive investigation began to determine the cause of the battery failures inside the new planes. It turns out that the batteries were overheating and literally melting. However, in order to get all 50 Dreamliners back up in the air, Boeing will be redesigning the battery as a temporary fix.
The battery redesign would minimize the risk of a meltdown happening, thus reducing the risk of a fire on board, which is what was suspected of happening in the past on the new planes. Again, it's not Boeing's permanent solution, but they say it's the quickest way to get the planes back up in the air the safest way.
The redesigned batteries will have more space and separation between cells, and Boeing is also planning to add enhanced heat sensors. Plus, the company also plans to make the battery cells more rigid to keep them from moving around. We're not sure if the cells were prone to moving around beforehand, but either way, it looks like Boeing is fully committed to using lithium-ion batteries in the 787, rather than nickel-cadmium batteries found in most other planes.
Boeing has hundreds of engineers and other experts working around the clock to resolve this issue, but there's no word one when the new planes will be ready to fly again. The last we heard, investigations were going smoothly, but there was no rush to get the aircrafts back in service, so it could be a while before we see them in the air again.