Back in January, Boeing's 787 Dreamliner jets were grounded by the FAA after experiencing issues with batteries overheating, which posed a fire risk. It took a couple months, but last week the FAA approved Boeing's new battery design, and yesterday it lifted the ban it had in place. Now Japan has given the go-ahead for resuming flights after the modications and changes needed are made.
This approval follows the FAA's statement, with Japan's Transport Minister Akihiro Ohta saying: "We have reached a conclusion that there is no problem with the judgment by the FAA. We believe all possible safety measures would be taken to prevent recurrence of similar problems." Before the planes can take to the skies, batteries must be changed and an approved system must be installed that will keep the lithium ion batteries from overheating and potentially catching fire.
This is particularly good news for the two Japanese airlines who have the Boeing jets. A total of 50 787 Dreamliners are in service across the globe, with nearly half of them being located in Japan. According to the Associated Press, Japan Airlines has seven 787 Dreamliners and All Nippon Airways has 17 of them, making a total of 24 grounded jets.
On top of the requirements that have been set forth by the FAA, Japan is also making the two aforementioned airlines do some additional changes, which includes a new system that allows those on the ground to monitor the voltage of the batteries on the plane. Estimates have it that the jets will be sky-ready by summertime, with All Nippon Airways saying it'll take about one week to repair a single plane.
[via Yahoo News]