Boeing is considering a fix for the batteries in its Dreamliner jet that appears to take into account criticism by Elon Musk, founder of Tesla and SpaceX.According to the Wall Street Journal, Boeing may increase the amount of space between the cells in the lithium-ion batteries, as a way to limit the spread of “thermal runaway,” the term for when uncontrollable heat damages the battery.
In a recent email to the aviation publication Flightglobal, Musk wrote:
Unfortunately, the pack architecture supplied to Boeing is inherently unsafe. Large cells without enough space between them to isolate against the cell-to-cell thermal domino effect means it is simply a matter of time before there are more incidents of this nature.
In a Wall Street Journal video report today, Jon Ostrower reported Boeing has told stakeholders and clients it hopes to have a fix for the battery in place by the end of February, but that it is also focusing on finding to root causes of the failures.
Meanwhile, the NTSB’s probe of the lithium-ion batteries continues. The Board is expected to announce Thursday that its investigation will turn its focus to the initial decision by the Federal Aviation Administration to approve the plane for flight.
Boeing did get a spot of good news today: The FAA has approved a one-time “ferry flight” for the 787, so a grounded jet can be moved from Texas to Everett, Washington, where Boeing is based, on Thursday.
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