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Air India to await US regulators’ report on Dreamliner

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The six Boeing 787 aircraft in the Air India fleet are operating normally and are not being pulled out of service, amidst reports of the newest civilian aircraft facing problems in the fleet of other international airlines.

In the last few weeks, there have been incidents, including an electrical fire, a brake problem and a fuel spill involving the Boeing 787 aircraft at various airports around the world.

Air India’s Boeing 787 aircraft, however, have not been involved in any of the reported incidents.

The incidents globally have prompted the American Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to conduct a comprehensive review of the Boeing 787 critical systems, including its design, manufacture and assembly.

In a statement, the FAA said the purpose of the review was to validate the work conducted during the certification process and ensure that the aircraft met the FAA level of safety.

A team of FAA and Boeing engineers and inspectors will conduct the review, with emphasis on the aircraft’s electrical power and distribution system.

The review is expected to begin in Seattle, but may expand to other locations, the FAA added.

“Air India is alert to the situation and watching the developments for directives from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation and FAA on what steps, if any, need to be taken,” a senior airline official said.

The six aircraft are used to operate regular domestic flights to Kolkata, Chennai and Bangalore, apart from connecting India with Dubai, Frankfurt and Paris.

A senior DGCA official said the regulator would wait for a report from the FAA and National Transport Safety Board before taking a view on whether any instructions need to be issued to Air India for making any changes on their Boeing 787 aircraft.

In a statement, Boeing said that 787 was a “safe and efficient airplane which has logged 50,000 hours of flight and there are more than 150 flights occurring daily”.

ashwini.phadnis@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on January 12, 2013)
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Comments:

Boeing 787 Dreamliner a design represents great leap forward in commercial airplane manufacturing technology. It is an audacious design daringly making best use the latest technology can offer. Dreamliner relies more than any other modern airliner on electrical signals to help power nearly everything the plane does. It’s also the first Boeing plane to use rechargeable lithium ion batteries, which charge faster and can be molded to space-saving shapes compared to other airplane batteries. The plane is made with lightweight composite materials instead of aluminum. An aircraft with path breaking design concepts of no air bleed and more electrical system architecture is bound to have teething problems in the initial period and all the issues are expected to be resolved. There is every reason to believe that Boeing 787 will be as much a bench mark design as Dakota or Boeing 707 commercial aircraft.

from:  N.G. Krishnan
Posted on: Jan 13, 2013 at 11:32 IST

Thank goodness that there have been incidents in America, because they will not be brushed under the carpet unlike in India. The B787 deal was only for the benefit of politicians and we all know how! Imagine buying an extra modern, extra expensive aircraft that cannot even fly long haul sectors! Is good only for short haul flights less than 8 hrs of flying and sink the national airline under a debt of40,000 crore. Mera Bharat Mahan!

from:  PRAGATI
Posted on: Jan 13, 2013 at 14:41 IST
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