On Friday, Boeing completed the final certification test required by the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for approval of the company’s lithium-ion battery modifications for the 787 Dreamliner aircraft. The test flight was made using a Boeing-owned production airplane built for LOT Polish Airlines with the company reporting that the test was “straightforward and the flight was uneventful.”
The flight marks the latest phase in the events following the grounding of the 787 fleet earlier this year after battery overheating problems occurred aboard a number of the aircraft. With a crew of eleven aboard, the test flight took place from Paine Field, Everett, Washington and lasted for one hour and 49 minutes with the craft being put through normal and unusual flight conditions. Its purpose was to see how well the new battery and battery compartment modifications stand up in real world conditions.
Boeing says it will gather and analyze the test flight data and send it on to the FAA for final approval in the next few days. If all goes well, the 787 Dreamliners could re-enter service shortly.