Boeing Completes Second Test Flight of Troubled 787 Dreamliner

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Boeing announced on Friday it had completed the second test flight of its troubled 787 as it tries to overturn a global grounding of the aircraft.

The flight was part of a series to test a new battery system, after problems with lithium-ion batteries in two 787s led to smoke and fire in January.

The flight, which began and ended in Everett, Washington, lasted for one hour and 49 minutes and was "straightforward" and "uneventful," Boeing said.

The company said it would now gather and analyze the data and submit it to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), which must give its permission before the planes can carry passengers again.

"We expect to deliver all of the materials to the FAA in the coming days. Once we deliver the materials we stand ready to reply to additional requests and continue in dialog with the FAA to ensure we have met all of their expectations," the company said in a statement.

Boeing completed the first successful tests of its troubled Dreamliner 787 since the jet was grounded last month.

The company had delivered just 50 of the jets when lithium-ion batteries on two of the planes caught fire. The two incidents, one in the US and another in Japan, triggered a global grounding for the Dreamliner.

The 787 is the first large passenger jet to make such extensive use of lithium-ion technology. Investigators in Japan and the US are still trying to determine the primary cause of the battery failures and have so far concentrated on the planes' battery system itself.

Boeing has not publicly given details of what measures it has taken to fix the issues. It has reportedly encased the battery in a steel box and divided the cells as well as adding a venting tube to dangerous fumes outside the plane.

Powered by article was written by Dominic Rushe, for The Guardian on Friday 5th April 2013 22.33 Europe/London © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010


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