Latest 787 Fire Pits Boeing With Fresh Challenges

Less than two months after Boeing 787s began returning to revenue service with batteries modified to prevent fires like the ones that prompted the grounding, burn damage in another part of the aircraft is again posing a challenge to the U.S. manufacturer. This time, a fire related to 787's emergency locator transmitter caused extensive heat damage near the aft crown just forward of the vertical tail.

Check out Aviation Week articles about the search for the latest fire's cause and the questions Boeing will face in determining whether and how to fix the damaged Ethiopian Airlines jet. You can also view a video of our 787 pilot report. Bookmark this page to keep up with developments on the 787.

Articles & Resources

Aug 22 - FAA Preparing To Follow Canada’s Call To Broaden Honeywell ELT Inspections

Aug 19 - Europe Joins Canada In Extending Checks On Honeywell ELTs Beyond Boeing’s 787

Aug 14 - 787 Wiring Problem Triggers More Inspections

July 26 - ANA Finds Damaged ELT Wiring During 787 Inspections

July 26 - FAA Mandates Inspection Or Removal Of Honeywell ELTs From Boeing 787s

July 22 - Boeing Switches To Repair Mode After 787 Fire

July 21 - Pinched Wire May Have Caused 787 Transmitter Fire

July 18 - AAIB Calls For Deactivation Of 787 Emergency Locator Transmitters

July 14 - Investigators Rule Out Battery In 787 Fire

July 12 - Ethiopian 787 In Heathrow Fire Incident

June 24 - FAA Adapts Maintenance Requirements For New Part Used In 787 Battery Fix

May 24 - Boeing Tackles 787 APU Overheating Issue

May 22 - Boeing Tackles 787 APU Heating Issue

May 15 - Boeing Starts Delivering 787s

May 10 - Boeing On Track To Produce 10 787s Monthly By End Of Year

May 8 - NTSB Says No Change In 787 Battery Tempo

May 7 - NTSB Accelerates Search For 787 Battery Problems

Apr. 26 - FAA, Boeing Grilled About Battery Certification

Apr. 26 - Boeing’s Battery Fix Preserves 787 Systems

Apr. 26 - Most 787 Operators Hope To Resume Flying In May

Apr. 26 - About 100 Batteries Returned To Boeing Since 787 Deliveries Started

Apr. 25 - Boeing Uses New Test For 787 Batteries

Apr. 25 - Boeing 787 Lithium-Ion Battery Modification Gains EASA Approval

Apr. 24 - Boeing Expects 787 Battery Fix To Be Completed Mid-May

Apr. 23 - Boeing Admits Flaw In 787 Battery Short Circuit Testing

Apr. 22 - Boeing Engineers Begin Work On 787 Fix

Apr. 22 - Battery Modifications Underway On ANA, JAL 787s

Apr. 19 - FAA Approves 787 Battery Fix

Apr. 19 - Boeing Ready For FAA Approval Of 787 Battery Fix

Apr. 12 - Boeing Poised To Begin 787 Fleet Battery Mods

Apr. 5 - Boeing Completes 787 Battery Certification Tests

Apr. 1 - Boeing Plans Further 787 System Flight Tests

Mar. 29 - 787 ETOPS Threat Dismissed As Speculation

Mar. 25 - Boeing 787 Makes First Flight With Revised Battery

Mar. 24 - Boeing Sets Up For 787 Battery Flight Test

Mar. 21 - Boeing Readies For 787 Ferry And Test Flights

Mar. 18 - Boeing Reveals 787 Battery Fix Details

Mar. 14 - Boeing Expects 787 Battery Tests To Be Completed In Weeks

Mar. 13 - FAA Approves Boeing Plan For 787 Battery Fix

Mar. 7 - NTSB Plans April Investigative Hearing And Forum On 787 Battery

Mar. 1 - Boeing Readies 787 Test Plan

Mar. 1 - Continued 787 Grounding Causes ANA New Problems

Feb. 22 - Boeing Encouraged By Talks With FAA On 787 Battery Modification

Feb. 21 - Boeing Pushes For FAA Green Light On 787 Plan

Feb. 20 - Air India Will Seek Compensation From Boeing For 787 Disruptions

Feb. 20 - Boeing Heading To DC For 787 Fix Approval From FAA

Feb. 15 - Girding For 787 Delivery Delays

Feb. 15 - As Boeing Works On 787 Fix, Regular Reaction Still To Be Determined

Feb. 15 - Airbus Drops Lithium-Ion Batteries For A350

Feb. 12 - Micro-Structures Identified As Possible Cause Of 787 Woes

Feb. 8 - Boeing Prepares To Resume 787 Flight Tests

Feb. 8 - Boeing Tells Customers To Expect 787 Delivery Delays

Feb. 7 - FAA Gives All Clear For 787 Test Flights

Feb. 7 - FAA Approves 787 Ferry Flight

Feb. 6 - Boeing Seeing Approval For 787 Test Flights, Says Japanese Regulator

Feb. 4 - Boeing Stays Loyal To Lithium As Probe Continues

Feb. 4 - Failure Modes Featured In 787 Battery Reassessment

Feb. 4 - 787 Suppliers Told: Maintain Pace

Feb. 4 - Business Aviation Wary Of New Batteries

Feb. 4 - Groundings of U.S. Commercial Transports Are Rare

Feb. 4 - Reliability ‘Key’ To Space-Qualified Li-Ion Batteries

Feb. 1 - Airbus Studying Battery Alternatives

Jan. 31 - JAL's Chairman Sees No Immediate Resolution To 787 Battery Issues 

Jan. 30 - Boeing Reaffirms Commitment To 787 Battery Technology

Jan. 30 - Boeing Chief Confident Of New Programs Despite 787 Problems

Jan. 29 - Japanese Safety Board Draws Blank in 787 Safety Probe

Jan. 28 - 787 Investigation Progresses But Solution Is Elusive

Jan. 28 - Calls For More Tests Of Lithium-Ion Batteries

Jan. 28 - 787 Investigation Progresses But Solution Is Elusive

Jan. 21 - Battery Mod Looms As 787 Grounding Shifts Focus

Jan. 21 - FAA Bypasses Legacy Review On 787

 Jan. 18 - Battery Fix Becomes A Priority For Boeing After 787 Fleet Is Grounded

Jan. 17 - All Boeing 787 Operators Ground Fleets

Jan. 17 - FAA's 787 Directive Prompts Global Groundings

Jan. 16 - FAA Grounds 787s

Jan. 16 - Battery Problem Grounds Japanese 787 Fleets

Graphic: All Nippon Airways and Japan Airlines 787 Incident Aircraft Details

Jan. 14 - Boeing, NTSB Probe JAL 787 Battery Fire

Jan. 9 - Boeing's Billion Dollar Dilemma

Jan. 8 - Boeing Probes New 787 Electrical Incident

Dec. 10 - Aviation Week Evaluates Boeing 787

The last time the FAA grounded a commercial fleet was in 1979, after a McDonnell Douglas DC-10 crashed shortly after takeoff from Chicago's O'Hare International Airport. The suspension was reported in the June 11, 1979 issue of Aviation Week & Space Technology. Click here to read the full article.

787 Deliveries: Air India, 6; All Nippon Airways, 17; Ethiopian Airlines, 4; Japan Airlines, 7; LAN Airlines, 3; LOT Polish Airlines, 2; Qatar, 5; United Airlines, 6

Reference: DOT/FAA/AR-09/55 Report: Flammability Assessment of Lithium-Ion and Lithium-Ion Polymer Battery Cells Designed for Aircraft Power Usage (pdf)

Boeing 787 Pilot Report

Fly along with Aviation Week's Fred George as he tries out the 787's advanced features.